Re: [DNSOP] Adam Roach's No Objection on draft-ietf-dnsop-serve-stale-09: (with COMMENT)

"J.C. Jones" <> Wed, 04 December 2019 22:54 UTC

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From: "J.C. Jones" <>
Date: Wed, 4 Dec 2019 15:54:36 -0700
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To: Adam Roach <>
Cc: Dave Lawrence <>, The IESG <>,,,
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Subject: Re: [DNSOP] Adam Roach's No Objection on draft-ietf-dnsop-serve-stale-09: (with COMMENT)
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I think the CABForum is indeed the right mechanism to alert both CAs and
root programs to such a change, and then the root programs can include it
in their periodic notices to their included CAs -- which will then cover
all bases.

I would be happy to introduce the information to the CABForum's server
certificate mailing list, and indicate its origin of course. Alternatively,
anyone can email it to the CABForum Public List <>;
directly and then the appropriate CABF Working Group Chair would be
responsible for forwarding it onward suitably. (Note: I'm a member of that
public list's recipients, so I could confirm it wasn't lost.) I think
either would be fine -- but if you'd like me to do the introducing, I'd
appreciate it if you could synthesize me a quick rundown of what CAs need
to know.


On Tue, Dec 3, 2019 at 10:24 PM Adam Roach <>; wrote:

> [JC -- note for you at the very bottom]
> On 12/3/19 4:27 PM, Dave Lawrence wrote:
> > Thank you very much for your review, Adam.  I have incorporated your
> > feedback into the document (which is not yet pushed to datatracker).
> >
> > Here's the diff:
> >
> >
> >
> > Adam Roach via Datatracker writes:
> >> The addition of what I must presume is intended to be RFC 2119
> >> language to a document that doesn't cite RFC 2119 seems
> >> questionable.  I would suggest either explicitly adding RFC 2119
> >> boilerplate to RFC 1035 as part of this update, or using plain
> >> English language to convey the same concepts as are intended.
> > I definitely agree it is questionable, and if something needs to be
> > done to resolve this then your first suggestion is the one that is
> > more agreeable to me personally, but I can also see how that too is
> > questionable and might get some pushback.  It's a bit of a weird
> > situation.
> >
> > It is perhaps worth noting that several other RFCs that have updated
> > 1035, starting with 3658, have already used 2119 normative keywords.
> > So in spirit it's already there, just not with an explicit remark in
> > any of the that formally puts the boilerplate on 1035 itself.  (And,
> > in the end, that means 1035 is a weird hodge-podge of old world and new.)
> That would be all the more reason to formally update RFC 1035 to
> incorporate RFC 2119 terminology. I'll note that this document does go
> well beyond the simple task explained in its title to do some general
> unrelated housecleaning (cf. the high-order bit of the TTL), so it seems
> to have taken exactly this kind of broad document maintenance under its
> remit.
> >>>   A proposed mitigation is that certificate authorities
> >>>   should fully look up each name starting at the DNS root for every
> >>>   name lookup.  Alternatively, CAs should use a resolver that is not
> >>>   serving stale data.
> >> This seems like a perfectly good solution, although I wonder how
> >> many CAs are likely to read this document. If I were the type to
> >> engage in wagering, I'd put all of my money on "zero." I'm not sure
> >> specific action is called for prior to publication of this document
> >> as an RFC, but it seems that additional publicity of this issue and
> >> the way that serve-stale interacts with it -- e.g., to CAB Forum and
> >> its members -- is warranted.
> > Completely agree, except to the point that if it were known that there
> > was money riding on it then someone at a CA would read it just to take
> > your money. :)  That said, anyone have thoughts on how best to bring
> > it to their attention?
> >
> I'm copying JC Jones on this mail to seek his advice on this point.
> /a