Not enough random bytes available. [GPG Signing]

This article was published 8 years ago. Due to the rapidly evolving world of technology, some concepts may no longer be applicable.

I’m currently following this awesome guide on how to set up encrypted Amazon S3 backups from a server. The first thing it asks you to do is to generate a GPG key. It was all going well until the following message came up:

Not enough random bytes available.  Please do some other work to give the OS a chance to collect more entropy! (Need 284 more bytes)

You can see the available entropy on a system by using the following command:

watch cat /proc/sys/kernel/random/entropy_avail

In my case, it did not seem to be increasing much, no matter how many times I ran dmesg, pinged google or listed a directory’s contents. I needed to find something with much more data throughput. The following did the trick:

find / > /dev/null

No sooner had I started the command, the GPG key generation finished and I could carry on installing Duplicity 🙂

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