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I have an encrypted home directory, and today when I came to my computer, there was a prompt I had never seen before labeled "Restore Test", which asked me to input my home directory decryption key.

Well, I put in the decryption key, and pressed OK, and the prompt went away, never reporting success or failure. Now I'm a bit suspicious of the program.


  1. Is this a legitimate part of Ubuntu and not some spear phishing attack?
  2. How can I be sure?
  3. If this is just a bad UX, where do I report this as a bug so others don't have to worry as I currently am?


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That sounds like you are on Ubuntu 12.10 and are using encrypted automatic backups. Every two months, the backup system performs a Restore Test which will prompt for your password (see below for why). You should have also seen in that same dialog a checkbox to disable such tests.

However, you should have seen a success or failure dialog at the end of the test (which may take some time). It would have been a dialog that asked for attention in the launcher bar on the left, but would not have popped above your current window. Maybe you didn't notice the dialog before logging out? Else maybe there is a real bug.

(The restore test is done without using any saved passwords. That is why it asks you. This is done in part to confirm that the user has not forgotten the password and would able to restore on a fresh system.)

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