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gem install issue

October 7, 2012
[web] [network] [ruby] [gem] [proxy] [issue]

This day I finally made a decision to start posting some notes on computer related stuff and mainly about how I solved some minor issues with software. Several month ago I already picked statically generated sites and GitHub pages as a hosting (I don’t expect other people to read this, I just don’t want to forget anything of it :-), so such hosting is enough for my needs). So I found a post Setting up Github Pages written by David Winter and started following steps described there.

Unfortunately, I failed at the very first step with command:

gem install jekyll

And got this error message from gem:

WARNING:  Error fetching data: Errno::ECONNREFUSED: Connection refused - connect(2) (

I tried using wget to download the file:


and it worked greatly. So the next thing to try was running some of gem commands that work locally:

gem list --local
gem list -l

Which are worked fine, while these commands:

gem list --remote
gem list -r

failed just like gem install jekyll. After searching on the Internet to find out possible reason on an issue a note about possibly incorrect setup proxy was found (here). I didn’t actually use any proxy, but since I was playing with privoxy some time ago and remembered something about $HTTP_PROXY environment variable I decided to check contents of my ~/.bashrc and ~/.profile and found this line in the ~/.profile file:

export HTTP_PROXY=""

I don’t know why other software didn’t complain about not working proxy, it seems like it just tried to use the proxy and then silently switched to direct connection configuration.

Anyway, after removing that line from the ~/.profile and running


command in the working terminal I was able to successfully install jekyll gem.