what is the proper way to load gpg-agent with systemd

Paulo Lopes pmlopes at gmail.com
Tue Mar 17 19:43:02 CET 2015

On Tue, Mar 17, 2015 at 7:19 PM, Doug Barton <dougb at dougbarton.email> wrote:

> On 3/17/15 7:48 AM, Paulo Lopes wrote:
>> Hello,
>> I've been using my gpg card with success in Ubuntu for a while but as
>> everyone knows the init system is switching from upstart to systemd as
>> it is happening on Debian and the vast majority of other distributions.
>> In the "past" one could start gpg-agent from the script that boots Xorg
> Are you using the ssh-agent capabilities? If not, you don't need to do
> anything special to start the agent, it will use the socket method by
> default.

So what I did was to create a user unit file like this on ~/.local/:


ExecStart=/usr/bin/gpg-agent --daemon --enable-ssh-support
--scdaemon-program /usr/libexec/scdaemon --use-standard-socket --log-file
~/.gnupg/gpg-agent.log --write-env-file %h/$
ExecStop=/usr/bin/pkill gpg-agent


Now what happens is that i start a java application "IntelliJ" and when i
try to get git to fetch some code it complains that the it cannot sign the
key. However if i use "pass" then the pinentry popup shows i enter my pin
and from there the git stuff works from intellij.

So it feels quite strange that i need to do all this juggling to get it
working :/

But i read about socket activation in your message so i guess my unit file
is wrong, could you share how to use socket activation? And if does that
how do you set the SSH agent variables?

> Also, do you have any evidence that the method you are currently using
> won't work with systemd? X starts well after the low-level system stuff is
> up and running, I'm having a hard time imagining why you couldn't continue
> doing what you're doing.
> Doug

Paulo Lopes
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