gnupg cannot connect to keyserver

keyserver receive failed: Connection refused

On a docker project where i had to add gnupg keys i always got an error keyserver receive failed: Connection refused. After a while of troubleshooting, i realized it’s not a connection or DNS problem. But that the Dirmngr did not use the configured DNS servers of the system.

gpg --keyserver --recv-keys "3D06A59ECE730EB71B511C17CE752F178259BD92"
gpg: keyserver receive failed: Connection refused

This option forces the use of the system’s standard DNS resolver code.

echo standard-resolver >> $HOME/.gnupg/dirmngr.conf;

If you have already try to recive keys, you need to kill the dirmngr with pkill dirmngr.

We can now retrieve keys again:

gpg --keyserver --recv-keys "3D06A59ECE730EB71B511C17CE752F178259BD92"
gpg: key CE752F178259BD92: 51 signatures not checked due to missing keys
gpg: key CE752F178259BD92: public key "Isaac Bennetch <>" imported
gpg: no ultimately trusted keys found
gpg: Total number processed: 1
gpg:               imported: 1

Dockerfile example

FROM alpine
RUN apk add --no-cache gnupg

RUN mkdir $HOME/.gnupg; \
    chmod 700 $HOME/.gnupg; \
    echo standard-resolver >> $HOME/.gnupg/dirmngr.conf;

RUN gpg --keyserver --recv-keys "3D06A59ECE730EB71B511C17CE752F178259BD92"