Take the 2-minute tour ×
Super User is a question and answer site for computer enthusiasts and power users. It's 100% free, no registration required.

I can't get mcrypt to work on a FreeBSD server ([Bus error 10]). GPG doesn't work, it says it cannot open /dev/tty.

Any ideas?

Also, I kind need to be able to decrypt the file on (Ubuntu) Linux. I tried enigma/crypt on FreeBSD, and then when I copy the file to Linux, crypt cannot decrypt it.

share|improve this question
Regarding gpg, do you use gpg in a script or from a GUI? There is a "--no-tty" option that might help –  arved Dec 9 '11 at 12:49

1 Answer 1

up vote 0 down vote accepted

For symmetric encryption you could use enc(1) which is part of openssl. To encrypt a file with aes256-xts cipher:

openssl enc -aes-256-xts -in foo.txt -out foo.txt.enc

And to decrypt it:

openssl enc -d -aes-256-xts -in foo.txt.enc -out foo.txt

Pretty easy huh?

One other neat feature is that it supports base64 which means it'll use only ascii characters. Just add -a to the list of arguments and then look at the encrypted file.

enc(1) is a versatile program. I use it often when I quickly want to copy a file or a small compressed tar archive from one terminal screen to the other, I simply only use base64.

Let's say I want to quickly copy a directory /home/drumfire/test which contains a few files, and can't use scp or other tools. It's trivial to run this through a compression program and encode it:

tar cf - /home/drumfire/test | xz -9ec | openssl enc -a

The result is a blob of ascii text. I select to copy it, and then on the target system I can simply do:

openssl enc -a -d | xz -dc | tar xvf -

In this case Openssl will wait for input from stdin. so I hit Shift+Insert which pastes the text, then I press press CTRL+D two times and voila, it extracts.

Neat stuff. B-)

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.