[pacman-dev] [PATCH] pacman-key: change signing key to ed25519

Eli Schwartz eschwartz at archlinux.org
Thu Nov 5 00:40:56 UTC 2020

On 11/4/20 5:47 PM, Geert Hendrickx via pacman-dev wrote:
> On Wed, Nov 04, 2020 at 16:30:19 -0500, Eli Schwartz wrote:
>> Currently pacman assumes gpgme from >= the year 2010, is that sufficient
>> to read ed25519? (idk, it's shelling out to gpg and thus likely doesn't
>> care?) Maybe we should bump this anyway in the expectation that requiring
>> a ~2015 version of gpgme will naturally lead to gpg versions that support
>> generating such keys.
> This change only affects new installations, existing ones will continue
> using their rsa2048 (or recently rsa4096) master keys, until they re-run
> pacman-key --init.

That's really not my point at all. My point is that rerunning --init
does something the project dependencies don't describe as a requirement
to support.

>>> This will also become the default in the next version of GnuPG.
>> I see such a commit on GnuPG's master branch but not on the stable
>> branch. When do you expect this to be released...
> Good question, I don't know.  The point is that the trend is clearly
> towards EdDSA rather than larger RSA.  And GnuPG (as well as openssh
> etc) need to be conservative, as they must be interoperable with other
> or older implementations, pacman doesn't even have that limitation.

Why doesn't pacman have this limitation? Because it is only used in Arch

Untrue, there is an active MSYS2 community using it, and we support
running on macOS/BSD and occasionally get people posting compilation
fixes on those platforms. Who knows what version of GnuPG various minor
users might have?

It's not ridiculous to consider *if* we can declare a dependency on the
proposed, updated runtime workflow requirement.

Likewise, I think "GnuPG did not actually change this default and won't
for some time" is a meaningful point of discussion; Jonas pointed out
the key strength actually decreases, while the smaller key size is not
obviously beneficial as it is only used for web of trust signing.

TBH, I'm -1 on any change that is being done without any rationale other
than "because it's the modern way of the future". Changes should be done
because they are better, or safer, or some other practical application.

This may or may not be the case here, I haven't pondered it much yet.
But... it's not being highlighted in the current discussion.

Eli Schwartz
Bug Wrangler and Trusted User

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