Is mandatory to use pinentry with gpg2?
Why is pinentry better over legacy prompt?
Yes, the use of a
pinentry program is mandatory with GnuPG 2 and later.
This follows from the updated architecture in use nowadays:
pinentry-compatible program of the user’s choice.
The use of a
pinentry program ensures that your private key stays confined to the agent (if it knows about it at all of course), without your having to supply the private key and passphrase explicitly to the agent (as happens e.g. with
ssh-add). It also ensures that the requests for your passphrase are consistent, regardless of the source of the request (the amount of security that that provides is as usual up for debate).