[messaging] TOFU to ease PGP key discovery

Tankred Hase tankred at whiteout.io
Tue Feb 10 09:51:08 PST 2015

Thanks for pointing that out. I replaced keys.gnupg.net with the fedora server.

Is is just me or do most SKS servers just not believe in TLS? :)

2015-02-10 17:29 GMT+01:00 Daniel Roesler <diafygi at gmail.com>:
> Interesting. Thanks for the reply!
> FYI, keys.gnupg.net just CNAMEs pool.sks.keyservers.net, so you don't
> need both in your list.
> $ dig keys.gnupg.net ns +short
> pool.sks-keyservers.net.
> I'd also recommend https://keys.fedoraproject.org/, since they enable
> TLS with a cert chained to a root CA.
> -Daniel
> On Tue, Feb 10, 2015 at 2:26 AM, Tankred Hase <tankred at whiteout.io> wrote:
>> Hi Daniel,
>>> 1. Are you using the sks-keyserver server or did you roll your own HKP
>>> implementation. If you're using sks, can you elaborate on how you
>>> setup your internal infrastructure and API to the core sks-keyserver?
>>> If you rolled your own HKP, is there source code available? I'd love
>>> to find an alternative implementation for HKP that's not written in
>>> OCaml.
>> Our key server is written in node.js, uses MongoDB and runs on AWS
>> Elastic Beanstalk Infrastructure
>> (https://aws.amazon.com/elasticbeanstalk/).
>> Our server code is pretty specific to our service, so I don't know if
>> it would make sense to open source that. Right now we are open
>> sourcing only the client app.
>>> 2. You mentioned on HN that you gossip with other keyservers[1]. Since
>>> the gossip protocol is completely undocumented, do you know much about
>>> how it works? I've been trying to read the OCaml, but have been
>>> getting very lost. Hockeypuck[2] claims they can do this, but I don't
>>> think it's the same gossip protocol, right?
>> Our "gossiping protocol" is quite simple at the moment. We didn't
>> implement a standard. It just act as a proxy to five common SKS
>> servers. This is mainly because of the lack of CORS and reliability as
>> mentioned in the blog post.
>> If we don't find a verified public key in our directory, we proxy the
>> following GET request:
>> /pks/lookup?op=get&options=mr&search=<emailAddress>
>> To these five servers and return the fastest response:
>> 'https://pgp.mit.edu',
>> 'http://pool.sks-keyservers.net',
>> 'http://keys.gnupg.net',
>> 'http://keyserver.ubuntu.com',
>> 'http://pks.gpg.cz'
>> These were the most reliable servers in my tests. Especially the
>> ubuntu key server seems to be the fastest most of the time.
>>> 3. When gossiping, do you accept new keys from other sources that have
>>> a @whiteout.io domain? If I create a public key for "John Smith
>>> <john.smith at whiteout.io>" and upload it to pgp.mit.edu, will that be
>>> synced with your database?
>> We don't sync. We proxy requests for fetches and uploads.
>>> Third, FYI, there is CORS support for sks keyservers as of 1.1.5.
>>> Also, many keyservers are mirrored on port 443 and using root CA
>>> signed certs. I created an ajax publickey.js demo[3] using the
>>> https://keys.fedoraproject.org/ keyserver. You're right, though, that
>>> you can't just use hkps.pool.sks-keyservers.net, since the TLS
>>> certificate in that pool must be signed by the SKS CA (which isn't a
>>> root CA in pretty much every browser).
>> Good to know thanks!
>> Tankred
>>> Thanks again!
>>> Daniel
>>> [1]: https://news.ycombinator.com/item?id=9013852
>>> [2]: https://hockeypuck.github.io/
>>> [3]: https://diafygi.github.io/publickeyjs/
>>> On Mon, Feb 9, 2015 at 12:58 AM, Tankred Hase <tankred at whiteout.io> wrote:
>>>> Hi,
>>>> we've added HKP key server support to Whiteout Wail and have written a
>>>> post about usability. Though I'd share it here:
>>>> https://blog.whiteout.io/2015/02/06/making-pgp-key-management-invisible-so-johnny-can-encrypt/
>>>> Thanks for any feedback!
>>>> Tankred
>>>> --
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>>>> Grafinger Str. 6
>>>> D-81671 München
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>> --
>> Whiteout Networks GmbH c/o Werk1
>> Grafinger Str. 6
>> D-81671 München
>> Geschäftsführer: Oliver Gajek
>> RG München HRB 204479

Whiteout Networks GmbH c/o Werk1
Grafinger Str. 6
D-81671 München
Geschäftsführer: Oliver Gajek
RG München HRB 204479

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