A supported PGP passphrase agent is not running

By | 2008/07/21

This post is published in the hope that it’ll help others solve an issue I’ve been dealing with for the past few weeks.  I have searched and searched for a solution and only recently found one workaround for the problem.  The bug that I have found is here.  Hopefully with some more attention it’ll be properly fixed.

The issue that I have been running into is that no supported PGP passphrase agents were running.  In other words I was not able to unlock my PGP keys for email signing and encryption.  You will have noticed this problem if you use email signing and encryption with tools such as Enigmail, etc.

The solution that I found, which is also outlined within the bug, is to remove a file that is apparently being loaded when the X session starts.  For some reason this file conflicts with the seahorse key caching system, and neither work.

To fix the issue simply move the conflicting file elsewhere:

sudo mv /etc/X11/Xsession.d/90gpg-agent ~/90gpg-agent.bak

Once this file is moved you should be able to restart X and have your key-caching functionality again.  If anyone else has a better fix or other suggestions please comment.

2 thoughts on “A supported PGP passphrase agent is not running

  1. Diti

    I have 60seahorse-plugins or 90×11-common_ssh-agent instead… is it worth to delete/remove one of them and see if it works? I'm afraid of messing up everything.

  2. Crimer

    It's simpler:
    sudo aptitude purge gnupg-agent

    The file named in this post will go away and the issue with it. It's an incompatibilty between gnupg-agent (also called gpg-agent) and seahorse-agent. ssh-agent can run without any problem, I think.

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