Re: [Cfrg] Fwd: Rev RFC 7539?

"Stanislav V. Smyshlyaev" <> Thu, 19 January 2017 10:50 UTC

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From: "Stanislav V. Smyshlyaev" <>
Date: Thu, 19 Jan 2017 13:50:17 +0300
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Subject: Re: [Cfrg] Fwd: Rev RFC 7539?
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Document: draft-nir-cfrg-rfc7539bis-00
Reviewer: Stanislav Smyshlyaev
Review Date: 2017-01-19

The purpose of the document is to address a set of of errata for RFC 7539.
It has been done systematically and correctly - all errata have been

RFC 7539 is an extremely important document providing some
(optional/"standby") diversity, so, I totally support the work and the
adoption of the new rfc7539bis as a CFRG document.

My only concerns related to the changes are the following (these two have
already been spotted by Russ Housley and John Mattsson):
- there are no changes in the Security Considerations section, while the
abstract says they should be.
- Capital "T" in the beginning of the second sentence of the abstract.

Also in the updated version I'd prefer to see an updated list of the papers
on ChaCha:
the ideology of the RFC is to give the alternative (e.g. as a standby
cipher) to AES in the protocols, so an up-to-date relevant list of
publications on the alternative algorithms would be helpful. Maybe the
authors have
thought on this and have come to a conclusion that no update is needed

Some editorial comments, related to the original RFC:
1) "Professor Bernstein's paper" -> "[ChaCha]".
2) Section 2.5: do we really need a c-code (together with #include...)
instead of pseudocode here?
3) To add to the Russ Housley's list of unnecessary bullets and line
numbers: are "@@@" needed in A.5?
4) For "+", "^" and "<<<" definitions are given and for "|" (again -
already spotted by Russ) and for "&" they are not - some revision here
would be helpful.

And one more minor comment: the statements in 2.7 about the PRFs may be
more accurate, if instead of (or in addition to) informal words (about HMAC
that are used as PRF and that Poly1305 should not) references to the formal
PRF property and papers with proofs of HMAC would be given.

Nevertheless, in my opinion, the document is very close to being ready and
should be adopted by CFRG (after these minor corrections).

Best regards,
Stanislav V. Smyshlyaev, Ph.D.,
Head of Information Security Department,
CryptoPro LLC

2017-01-18 21:30 GMT+03:00 Russ Housley <>:

> Document: draft-nir-cfrg-rfc7539bis-00
> Reviewer: Russ Housley
> Review Date: 2017-01-19
> Summary: Almost Ready
> Major Concerns:
> The Abstract says that there are additions to the Security
> Considerations; however, I do not see a difference between the
> Security Considerations in this document and RFC 7539.
> Minor Concerns:
> In Section 2.3.1, please add a sentence to define the "|" operator
> in a manner similar to the definition for "+" in Section 2.1.
> Nits:
> Abstract: s/any new crypto/any new cryptographic mechanisms/
> Section 2.1 uses "rotation" and "roll" to describe the same operation.
> Please pick one term.
> In Sections 2.1 and 2.3, I do not think that the line numbers aid the
> reader. I think that simple indention would be better.
> In Sections 2.1 and 2.1.1, I do not think that the bullets aid the
> reader.  I think that simple indention would be better.
> Section 2.5.1 includes: r = (le_bytes_to_num(key[0..15]).
> I think you want to drop the leading parenthesis.
> In Author's address, please capitalize "st."
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