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Verify Virtual Machine Images on the Command Line

From Whonix

< VirtualBox



In order to verify the Whonix image, GnuPG must be installed. GnuPG is the common OpenPGP implementation for Linux: it is installed by default in Debian, Ubuntu, Whonix and many other distributions.

1. Import the signing key.

Refer to the Whonix Signing Key instructions.

2. Download the cryptographic (OpenPGP) signature corresponding to the virtual machine image you want to verify.

3. Save the signature in the same folder as the virtual machine image.

VirtualBox

4. Start the cryptographic verification.

This process can take several minutes.

cd [the directory in which you downloaded the .ova and the .asc]
gpg --verify-options show-notations --verify Whonix-*.ova.asc Whonix-*.ova

5. Check the output of the verification step.

If the virtual machine image is correct, the output will inform that the signature is good:

gpg: Signature made Mon 19 Jan 2015 11:45:41 PM CET using RSA key ID 77BB3C48
gpg: Good signature from "Patrick Schleizer <adrelanos@riseup.net>" [unknown]
gpg: Signature notation: issuer-fpr@notations.openpgp.fifthhorseman.net=6E979B28A6F37C43BE30AFA1CB8D50BB77BB3C48
gpg: Signature notation: file@name=Whonix-15.0.0.4.9.ova
gpg: WARNING: This key is not certified with a trusted signature!
gpg:          There is no indication that the signature belongs to the owner.
Primary key fingerprint: 916B 8D99 C38E AF5E 8ADC  7A2A 8D66 066A 2EEA CCDA
     Subkey fingerprint: 6E97 9B28 A6F3 7C43 BE30  AFA1 CB8D 50BB 77BB 3C48

This output might be followed by a warning as follows.

gpg: WARNING: This key is not certified with a trusted signature!
gpg:          There is no indication that the signature belongs to the owner.

This message does not alter the validity of the signature related to the downloaded key. Rather, this warning refers to the level of trust placed in the Whonix signing key and the web of trust. To remove this warning, the Whonix signing key must be personally signed with your own key.

warning Check the GPG signature timestamp makes sense. For example, if you previously saw a signature from 2019 and now see a signature from 2018, then this might be a targeted rollback (downgrade) or indefinite freeze attack. [1]

The first line includes the signature creation timestamp; see the example below.

gpg: Signature made Mon 19 Jan 2015 11:45:41 PM CET using RSA key ID 77BB3C48

warning Note: OpenPGP signatures sign files, but not file names. [2]

From Whonix version 9.6 onwards the file@name OpenPGP notation automatically includes the file name. This helps to confirm that the file name has not been tampered with; see the example below.

gpg: Signature notation: file@name=Whonix-15.0.0.4.9.ova

If the Virtual Machine image is not correct, the output will inform that the signature is bad:

gpg: Signature made Sun Nov 25 21:48:54 2012 UTC
gpg:                using RSA key 77BB3C48
gpg: BAD signature from "Patrick Schleizer <adrelanos@riseup.net>"

Troubleshooting[edit]

When a GPG error is encountered, first try a web search for the relevant error. The security stackexchange website [archive] can also help to resolve GPG problems. Describe the problem thoroughly, but be sure it is GPG-related and not specific to Whonix ™.

More help resources are available on the Support page.

Footnotes[edit]

License[edit]

Whonix ™ VirtualBox/Verify the virtual machine images using the command line wiki page Copyright (C) Amnesia <amnesia at boum dot org>
Whonix ™ VirtualBox/Verify the virtual machine images using the command line wiki page Copyright (C) 2012 - 2019 ENCRYPTED SUPPORT LP <adrelanos@riseup.net>

This program comes with ABSOLUTELY NO WARRANTY; for details see the wiki source code.
This is free software, and you are welcome to redistribute it under certain conditions; see the wiki source code for details.



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This is a wiki. Want to improve this page? Help is welcome and volunteer contributions are happily considered! Read, understand and agree to Conditions for Contributions to Whonix ™, then Edit! Edits are held for moderation.

Copyright (C) 2012 - 2019 ENCRYPTED SUPPORT LP. Whonix ™ is a trademark. Whonix ™ is a licensee [archive] of the Open Invention Network [archive]. Unless otherwise noted, the content of this page is copyrighted and licensed under the same Freedom Software license as Whonix ™ itself. (Why?)

Whonix ™ is a derivative of and not affiliated with Debian [archive]. Debian is a registered trademark [archive] owned by Software in the Public Interest, Inc [archive].

Whonix ™ is produced independently from the Tor® [archive] anonymity software and carries no guarantee from The Tor Project [archive] about quality, suitability or anything else.

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