This example uses KeepassX but works the same for other projects which use
.sig signature files (another example is OpenResty).
First install GnuPG for your OS. Ubuntu has it usally installed from scratch. For OS X use Homebrew and install it with
brew install gnupg.
Get the public key of the owner first. According to this page the public key is
83135D45. So import the public key from a public keyserver (here from MIT):
Download KeepassX install file and its signature file from www.keepassx.org/dev/projects/keepassx/files.
Verify signature (in this example with beta2, OS X):
The last command should tell you that the file was correctly signed. You can also recheck that everything is ok by printing the exit code of the last command with
echo $? which should be 0. Otherwise you have a WRONG file without valid signature! Redownload it and check again, if it fails again do not install it!
One note: Most likely you will also get a warning (but no error!) like:
this is something you cannot prevent because it tells you basically that you trust the owner of the key and that the owner is really him (do you know him personally? Me neither ;) so please ignore this last warning. You can read more about this little warning here.
So this whole file checking is a little bit safer than a normal md5 or sha256 checksum because it involves the private key of the KeepassX owner. As always in computer science and life: Nothing is 100% safe.