Verify a downloaded ISO

When you download an ISO, download the accompanying SHA512SUMS and SHA512SUMS.sign to verify your downloaded files.


Check the downloaded file for corruption with sha512sum.

$ sha512sum -c SHA512SUMS --ignore-missing
debian-live-9.6.0-amd64-xfce.iso: OK

GPG signature

You may need to get the signing key from Check the debian verify page for updated IDs and fingerprints. On that page, you’ll find key listings looking like this:

pub   4096R/6294BE9B 2011-01-05
    Key fingerprint = DF9B 9C49 EAA9 2984 3258  9D76 DA87 E80D 6294 BE9B
uid                  Debian CD signing key <>
sub   4096R/11CD9819 2011-01-05

In the example above, the key ID is 6294BE9B

$ gpg --keyserver --recv 6294BE9B
$ gpg --verify SHA512SUMS.sign

GPG will warn you that the key is not trusted. That’s correct. Verify the fingerprints against the ones show on the page now. You may also check the fingerprints obtained through a different internet connection, eg. your smartphone’s 3G.

Make bootable USB

When everything is verified properly, make your bootable USB stick. Be careful and select the proper <device>, otherwise headaches will ensue.

sudo dd if=debian-live-9.6.0-amd64-xfce.iso of=/dev/<device> bs=4M status=progress; sync


Failed to start the dirmngr

While importing the GPG key, you may get the following error:

$ gpg --keyserver --recv-keys 0x673A03E4C1DB921F
gpg: failed to start the dirmngr '/usr/bin/dirmngr': No such file or directory
gpg: connecting dirmngr at '/run/user/1000/gnupg/S.dirmngr' failed: No such file or directory
gpg: keyserver receive failed: No dirmngr

You need to install dirmngr.

$ sudo apt-get install dirmngr