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Manage passwords on Linux with Password Store

Password Store is a simple password storage tool for Linux. It follows the Unix philosophy and encrypts passwords with GPG. This guide will show you how to manage your passwords on Linux with Password Store.

Installing Password Store on Linux

The Password Store application is available on all major Linux operating systems. Password Store is a terminal-based application. To get Password Store set up on your Linux PC, you’ll need to open up a terminal window on the desktop.

Unsure about how to open up a terminal window on the Linux desktop? Press Ctrl + Alt + T on the keyboard. Alternatively, the terminal window can be opened through the Linux app menu.

Once the terminal window is open and ready to use, the installation can begin. Follow the installation instructions that correspond to the Linux OS you use.


On Ubuntu, users will be able to install the Password Store application via the “pass” package. Using the apt install command below, set up the latest version of Password Store.

sudo apt install pass


On Debian Linux, the Password Store application is available for Debian 11, Debian 10, and Debian Sid users as the “pass” package. To install it on your system, use the following apt-get install command.

sudo apt-get install pass

Arch Linux

The Password Store application is installable via the “pass” package using Arch Linux. Run the following pacman -S command in a terminal window to get it working on your system.


Those on Fedora Linux can install the Password Store application via the “pass” package. To get the Password Store application set up on your Fedora system, run the following dnf install command.

sudo dnf install pass


On OpenSUSE Linux, the Password Store application is available to install; however, unlike other Linux OSes in this article, it is distributed via the “password-store” package rather than “pass.” To get it working on your OpenSUSE, use the following zypper install command.

sudo zypper install password-store

Setting up Password Store on Linux

Password Store saves your passwords in a plain text file. However, this plain text file is encrypted with a GPG key. As a result, users need to generate a GPG key to use with the application.

To generate a GPG key, open up a terminal window and use the gpg –full-generate-key command.

Note: if you do not have the GPG application installed on your Linux system, install the “gnupg” package before running the command above.

gpg --full-generate-key

Once the command above is run, an installation wizard will appear on the screen. The GUI will say, “Please select what kind of key you want.” It will also give you four choices to choose from. These choices are:

  • (1) RSA and RSA (default)
  • (2) DSA and Elgamal
  • (3) DSA (sign only)
  • (4) RSA (sign only)

Choose option one for your GPG key. Otherwise, if you are a GPG expert, feel free to choose a different option. After choosing your encryption type, follow the rest of the prompts to set up your key.

Using Password Store on Linux

To use Password Store on Linux, you must open up a terminal window. Press Ctrl + Alt + T on the keyboard, or launch it via the app menu. Once the terminal is open, follow the step-by-step instructions below.

Step 1: Type the pass init command to start the Password Store. Be sure to include the email address you added to your GPG key during the generation process.

pass init "your-gpg-key-email"

Step 2: After starting up the Password Store, use the pass insert command to add a new login to your password list. For example, to add a password for your business, the “Cheese Whiz Factory,” do the command below.

pass insert Business/cheese-whiz-factory

e.g: pass insert FOLDER_NAME/password-name

Step 3: Password Store will ask you to input a password once the pass insert command is entered. If you would like to generate a password, open a second terminal window and use the command below to generate one.

pass generate Business/cheese-whiz-factory

e.g: pass generate FOLDER_NAME/password-name

Step 4: Input your password into the text box to add a password. Repeat these four steps to add as many passwords as needed to Password Store.

Viewing passwords

To view an entered password in Password Store, do the following.

Step 1: Open a terminal window and run the pass command to view your passwords in the Password Store.

Step 2: Type the name of the password into the prompt with the pass command.

pass FOLDER_NAME/password-name

Alternatively, use the pass -c command to copy the password directly to your keyboard.

pass -c FOLDER_NAME/password-name

Step 3: After writing the command above, you will be asked to enter your password. Enter the password for the GPG key you generated earlier to view the password.

Removing passwords

Need to delete a password? Do the following.

Step 1: Enter the pass command to view your Password Store.


Step 2: Enter the pass rm command and the password’s name to delete it.

pass rm FOLDER_NAME/password-name

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