Get rid of GNOME keyring password reminder

Jack Wallen
May 23, 2010
Updated • Dec 5, 2012

Are you tired of that pesky GNOME keyring reminder popping up everywhere you go? You know what it does right? The GNOME keyring manager manages passwords for things like ftp connections, email password logins, wireless network authentication, and much more. Typically this is set up encrypted - by default this is the case with the keyring. But there is no way to enter that password and make it stick from session to session. Well, there is a way to do this, but I will warn you that doing this will store your password unencrypted. This is fine if you trust anyone that might be on your machine, or if you are not overly paranoid. If, however, you are of the paranoid persuasion you might want to skip this article all together.

If you do want to get rid of that pesky (but crucial to best-practice security) keyring manager, then read on brother, read on. NOTE: This will also delete any stored passwords that you have (outside of browser passwords), so if you do want to do this, make sure you know all of those passwords - otherwise you will be kicking yourself that you did this in the first place.

First steps

As I mentioned earlier, the first thing you will want to do is collect any password that might be stored in the keyrings. Outside of that, there is nothing more to prepare.

Find the files

What you are going to be doing is deleting the keyring files held within the ~/.gnome2/keyrings directory. I will show you two ways to do this - from the Nautilus file manage and from the command line. Both methods are simple. Which method you choose will depend upon which method you are most comfortable with. I will start with the GUI, since most people are more comfortable with that method.

Using Nautilus

Open up your Home directory in Nautilus. You can do this by clicking Places > Home. Now click the <Ctrl>h key combination to show hidden files. In the ~/ directory you will now see the ~/.gnome2 directory. Double click on that and then into the keyrings directory. In this directory you will see a number of files listed. Delete all of these files and then close out Nautilus. Once Nautilis is closed, close out all of your other applications and then reboot your machine. Once you reboot your machine attempt to connect to wireless or make a network connection that would normally ask for your keyring. When you do you will be asked to set a password. Instead of entering a password, just hit OK. When you do this another window will open warning you of the dangers of storing unencrypted. If you are sure you are okay with this OK that window and continue on.

Command line

This method is actually much more simple. Follow these steps:

  1. Open up a termina.
  2. Issue the command rm ~/.gnome2/keyrings/*
  3. Now reboot your machine.

That's it.

The "gotcha"

The downfall of this setup?  If anyone pokes around your machine, and knows to look in the ~/.gnome2/keyrings folder they will be able to read those files by simply opening them in a text editor. Those files will contain passwords for wireless and other password-enabled systems. You need to ask yourself if you trust your machine to unencrypted files of this nature. Myself? I don't trust this so I go ahead and deal with the keyring manager every time it decides to pop up. Is it a nuisance? Sure. But it is a necessity if you want to keep your passwords for these applications and systems encrypted.

It's your call. But remember, you've been warned about unencrypted password files. ;-)


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  1. titan said on December 10, 2012 at 9:15 am

    The gnome-keyring manager doesn’t normally bother users , until the user changes his login password. The best way to get rid of this pesky notification is to change the keyring password to the new login password , if you have changed your password

  2. oll said on May 24, 2010 at 11:01 am

    It’s better to use pam-keyring imho.
    It allows to automatically unlock your keyring with your session password.

  3. Bob Smith said on May 24, 2010 at 12:12 am

    1.Open up a “terminal ” not “termina”
    2.Use twitter more often cuz its second to email.

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