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9.4.8 Get and compare software versions.

The GnuPG Project operates a server to query the current versions of software packages related to GnuPG. gpgconf can be used to access this online database. To allow for offline operations, this feature works by having dirmngr download a file from, checking the signature of that file and storing the file in the GnuPG home directory. If gpgconf is used and dirmngr is running, it may ask dirmngr to refresh that file before itself uses the file.

The command --query-swdb returns information for the given package in a colon delimited format:


This is the name of the package as requested. Note that "gnupg" is a special name which is replaced by the actual package implementing this version of GnuPG. For this name it is also not required to specify a version because gpgconf takes its own version in this case.


The currently installed version or an empty string. The value is taken from the command line argument but may be provided by gpg if not given.


The status of the software package according to this table:


No information available. This is either because no current version has been specified or due to an error.


The given name is not known in the online database.


An update of the software is available.


The installed version of the software is current.


The installed version is already newer than the released version.


If the value (the empty string should be considered as zero) is greater than zero an important update is available.


This returns an gpg-error error code to distinguish between various failure modes.


This gives the date of the file with the version numbers in standard ISO format (yyyymmddThhmmss). The date has been extracted by dirmngr from the signature of the file.


This gives the date in ISO format the file was downloaded. This value can be used to evaluate the freshness of the information.


This returns the version string for the requested software from the file.


This returns the release date in ISO format.


This returns the size of the package as decimal number of bytes.


This returns a hexified SHA-2 hash of the package.

More fields may be added in future to the output.

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