Re: PKCS#11 URI slot attributes & last call

Nico Williams <> Wed, 17 December 2014 23:56 UTC

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Date: Wed, 17 Dec 2014 17:56:17 -0600
From: Nico Williams <>
To: Jan Pechanec <>
Subject: Re: PKCS#11 URI slot attributes & last call
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On Wed, Dec 17, 2014 at 03:52:50PM -0800, Jan Pechanec wrote:
> On Wed, 17 Dec 2014, Nikos Mavrogiannopoulos wrote:
> >I don't follow how the above require the slots to be known in order to
> >figure where the object is. In gnutls we handle all of these use cases,
> >and we don't need to know the slot at all. First you iterate all slots
> >searching for the object, and then you login and search again. How would
> >knowing the slot would have helped that?
> 	hi Nikos, if I expect a token to be inserted with some key 
> (rather then identifying the key to use) then specifying the slot 
> where such token is to be found seems useful to me.  If I understand 
> it correctly, that's how pam_pkcs11 works.  It has two configuration 
> options for this - slot description and slot ID.

That only works with a PKCS#11 implementation like Solaris' libpkcs11.

In general PKCS#11 slot IDs are unreliable, and that's why Nikos

> 	I know that the slot ID is cryptoki module specific.  It would 
> have been nice if the specification supported token serial number as 
> it does for tokens.

It needn't be stable even for one module.

> 	the updated text would have to provide information about 
> general unreliability using the slot ID, for example.

Please post proposed new text.  Time is running out.