Wednesday, February 10, 2010

GPG agent and pin entry

I recently hosed my X installation trying to get fglrx drivers to work. Turns out, that ubuntu stable is running a super old version of the x server, with which the latest fglrx drivers simply will not work. Somehow in the kernel locking and hard reboots, I managed to hose.... something. I had to manually remove a bunch of packages (dpkg --purge) and rebuild before I could get things working again.

The "solution" to this first part was to stick with an old version of the driver until the next Ubunto long-term release. :(

After all that hacking, my nice GPG interface went away. It used to have:

  • A pretty gnome-looking window for entering password,
  • Short (like 15-30 minutes?) cache time for future gpg commands
  • A little tray icon with a lock I could use to clear the cached pass phrases.

That's all gone. pinentry-gtk2 simply doesn't work. When installed, it flashes up a window, which accepts no input, and then disappears leaving a "bad passphrase" message on the terminal. The little tray thing is also gone.

The "solution" to all this is the pinentry-qt package, which pops up a KDE-looking window for entering the password. Lacking the system tray icon, I've found that sending a kill -hup to the gpg-agent directly will make it dump its cache.

So at least things are kind of working.