Nitrokey Storage, Linux#

  1. To access the OpenPGP smart card of the Nitrokey, install the package libccid. On Debian/Ubuntu based Distributions type in terminal: sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install libccid

    If your distribution has a rather old version of libccid (<1.4.21) you have to add the device information by yourself (for example if you are using Ubuntu 14.04 or older). In this case please follow these instructions.

  2. Download and start the Nitrokey App.

  3. Open the About window from Nitrokey App’s menu and check if you have the latest firmware installed. If it’s not the latest, please update.

  4. Use the Nitrokey App to change the default User PIN (default: 123456) and Admin PIN (default: 12345678) to your own choices.

Your Nitrokey is now ready to use.


For many use cases described, it is necessary to have either OpenPGP or S/MIME keys installed on the device (see below).

Key Creation with OpenPGP or S/MIME#

There are two widely used standards for email encryption. While OpenPGP/GnuPG is popular among individuals, S/MIME/x.509 is mostly used by enterprises. If you are in doubt which one to choose, you should use OpenPGP.