What does seahorse do?

Mario Vukelic mario.vukelic at dantian.org
Thu Nov 27 12:01:12 UTC 2008

On Thu, 2008-11-27 at 11:33 +0000, Chris G wrote:
> Well, sort of, however I don't understand how it "Cache your
> passphrase so you don't have to keep typing it".  Is it doing this
> completely transparently or what?  It hasn't asked me for my
> passphrase, how/when do I get it to do this, I can't find this
> anywhere in the help.

      * Someone sends you a gpg-ecrypted email
      * You click the message in a mail client that integrates with
        Seahorse, e.g., evolution
      * A dialog pops up asking you for your passphrase
      * Depending on your preferences, it will ask every time or cache
        the passphrase

See menu System -> Preferences -> Encryption and Keyrings, as well as
Applications -> Accessories -> Passwords and Encryption Keys. (Yeah, the
integration might have room for improvement)

> So kind!  :-)  

Glad you liked it :)

>  It's, I suspect, because I do most things from the
> command line.  I.e. I have ssh key based login set up to several
> systems and, when I move to a new system, I do all the key copying
> etc. on the command line.

I think that applications must explicitly integrate with Seahorse to
make use of its features. Nautilus does so for ftp, ssh, etc. Network
Manager uses Seahorse to store WLAN keys. Evolution stores email
passwords and uses GPG integration. I would expect Pidgin also to use
Seahorse. And so on ...

> While there are (obviously) a lot of processes that get started up by
> the system (before you even log in) I like to have control over the
> 'extras'.  E.g. it's up to me whether I install and run sshd, if the
> default installation did this I would be unhappy.  It seems to me that
> seahorse lies in the same area.

But by not starting convenient services automatically (which of course
should be secure), you would exclude all the non-expert users. I prefer
the current way: make it just work by default, and give experts the
control to turn stuff of. See System -> Preferences -> Sessions and
uncheck Gnome Keyring Daemon. Or go the the mentioned preference panels
and configure it how you want it.

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