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Re: Shipping SSL certificates in the base system
On 07/04/17 21:15, Benny Siegert wrote:
>> There are other stories as well, but that's a good illustration of
>> why it's a bad idea to just hand over a bunch of CA's to users without
>> any mechanism for keeping the CA database, and CRL's, up to date.
> I expected this argument, but it is finally irrelevant. This is because most users do one of two things:
> (a) do nothing and effectively trust all certificates, because none are installed;
> (b) install the mozilla-rootcerts package and trust the mozilla set.
> Maybe add
> (c) users who consciously select a subset of those certificates — probably a tiny minority> Compare with root certificates in the base system:
> Users in (a) gain cert verification. Users in group (b) do not have to do a manual step. Users in group (c) lose nothing, because they still can futz with root certificates manually.
> I assert that having a somewhat outdated set of Mozilla’s root certificates is better than having none at all and implicitly trusting everyone — or worse, trusting no one and having, say, Mercurial refuse to clone repos over https by default.
Perhaps, but I think you're mixing two different issues together.
If users choose to disable certificate verification, that's on them.
If TNF takes on the role of a trusted CA source, then that implies a
lot of responsibility that they don't currently have. They can't say
"here, have a bundle of outdated root certificates; we ship them only so
that some programs will shut up." -- that's irresponsible and it's
certain to cause unflattering comments.
Don't take me wrong, I want a solution which would make the X509
experience in NetBSD smoother. But being a trusted CA source means
splotlight and willingness to answer questions if something goes wrong.
I wouldn't be willing to take on that responsibility myself, so I'm not
going to ask TNF to do it. (Though I would obviously be delighted if
they assigned a Chief PKI Officer role and offered a proper CA
With all that being said, you're not wrong about the complexities of
X509 actually lowering security in many instances, but it's still the
user's choice to do so.
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