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With Macports, I realize that there are ports gnupg and a newer gnupg2. I'd like to use GnuPG to encrypt files. Should I install both, or just one is enough? If I installed both, are both compatible with each other? Does it matter which one I install first matter at all?

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up vote 4 down vote accepted

gpg2 is a redesigned version of gpg -- but changes are mostly on internal level. The newer version is split into multiple modules, for example there are also modules for X.509 (used by S/MIME).

From man gpg2:

In contrast to the standalone version gpg, which is more suited for server and embedded platforms, this version is commonly installed under the name gpg2 and more targeted to the desktop as it requires several other modules to be installed.

gpg will stay for embedded and server usage, as it brings less dependencies and smaller binaries.

From man gpg:

This is the standalone version of gpg. For desktop use you should consider using gpg2.


To directly answer your question:

Should I install both, or just one is enough? Does it matter which one I install first matter at all?

Just install both. They don't interfere anyway. Install gpg (if not installed anyway) for other applications that access it (like package managers, mail clients, ...), and gpg2 for "direct use" on the command line.

If I installed both, are both compatible with each other?

Both implement the OpenPGP protocol, so they're compatible to each other regarding data shared among them. Additionally, they're (mostly) using the same commands and options, so most of the time you could switch between them arbitrarily.

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