This affected me as well, after upgrading a digital ocean VM from 14.04
I straced the call, as well as using inotify tools to capture the
temporary files created. An interesting line in the strace is:
[pid 2608] execve("/usr/bin/apt-key", ["/usr/bin/apt-key", "--quiet", "
--readonly", "verify", "--status-fd", "3", "/tmp/apt.sig.CbTOUo",
"/tmp/apt.data.rwmcWB"], [/* 25 vars */]) = -1 EPERM (Operation not
Can post the entire strace dump if people think it would be helpful. The
apt.sig file was empty, whereas the apt.data file was 13k.
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apt-key works fine, yet apt fails with "Could not execute 'apt-key'"
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