password - You need a passphrase to unlock the secret key for user

  • NewBiL

    From launchpad I have an email containing OpenPGP encrypted key. I received that email in gmail. But gmail wont decrypt it. Then I setup Thunderbird for gmail account and installed Enigmail for decrypting pgp key. All works fine, but when trying to open that specific message it pops up with a message

    you need a passphrase to unlock the secret key for user

    and give a password field to enter. But my root password or mail password anything won't work there and I am not clear about this passphrase.
    However, what can I do now?

  • Answers
  • André Stannek

    If the E-Mail was send to you it was encrypted with your public key and can only be unlocked using your private key. You have to enter the passphrase you choose when creating the key pair.

    If it is not encrypted with your key, the sender got it wrong or it was not meant for you in the first place. You'll have no way to decrypt it without the matching private key and it's passphrase.

  • Related Question

    11.10 - How do I decrypt a openpgp email?
  • nik90

    I recently installed quickly to develop an ubuntu application (my first). I looked at the tutorial videos at I followed all the steps and then ran quickly release at which point it asked me to create a OpenPGP key. So I created one and it took some time to get it uploaded to the Ubuntu keyserver. Now, I imported the key to launchpad. I got an email to my hotmail account which I need to decrypt. I have no idea how to do it.

    In the email, it provided a link showing the instructions but they were specific to an email client like thunderbird, evolution etc. So I forwarded the email to my gmail account which I have configured in thunderbird. I installed the enigmail plugin. But I still do not know how to decrypt the message.

    Why can't this be a bit more simpler. I mean all the instructions up until this were clear and easy to follow but this one step is really annoying. Please help.

    Edit: I have Thunderbird 7 and Enigmail 1.3.2 installed. I do not see the option to automatically decrypt the email.

  • Related Answers
  • Rory Alsop

    By default enigmail will decrypt - see for guidance. If it doesn't, check the OpenPGP → Automatically Decrypt/Verify Messages option is checked.