Re: [tsvwg] New Version of draft-ietf-tsvwg-transport-encrypt (12)

Eric Rescorla <> Mon, 16 March 2020 15:34 UTC

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From: Eric Rescorla <>
Date: Mon, 16 Mar 2020 08:33:40 -0700
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To: Gorry Fairhurst <>
Cc: Martin Duke <>, David Schinazi <>, "" <>
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Subject: Re: [tsvwg] New Version of draft-ietf-tsvwg-transport-encrypt (12)
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On Mon, Mar 16, 2020 at 7:51 AM Gorry Fairhurst <>

> On 16/03/2020 13:06, Eric Rescorla wrote:
> On Mon, Mar 16, 2020 at 2:36 AM Gorry Fairhurst <>
> wrote:
>> Ekr,
>> On 15/03/2020 13:19, Eric Rescorla wrote:
>> Let me try to expand my point a bit.
>> Longstanding practice is for entities in the middle of the network to
>> use signals that were intended for the endpoint for their own
>> purposes.  With QUIC (and a lesser extent SCTP/DTLS), those signals
>> are being encrypted and thus unavailable to those non-endpoint
>> entities; this draft is mostly devoted to documenting the negative
>> impact of that change on the operations of those entities.
>> I disagree that this is "documenting the negative impact of that change".
>> The draft is about how this protocol information has and is being used.
>> As long as I can remember, there has been devices that utilise some of this
>> information, at the edge of an enterprise there is often at least one
>> device with this role; within a managed network there are devices; etc. If
>> the trend to use encrypted methods continues, some of these practices need
>> to be re-assessed, and the functions more widely understood than in an era
>> when nearly everything was thought to be TCP or "multimedia".
> I'm not sure what you're arguing here. What I said above is that
> this draft was "mostly devoted to documenting the negative
> impact of that change on the operations of those entities."
> In other words, it lists a bunch of things that people do now
> that will stop working. Do you not think that much of the
> material in this draft is of that form?
> -Ekr
> So the conclusion, para 2 states:
> "   This document has described some current practises, and the
>    implications for some stakeholders, when transport layer header
>    encryption is used.  It does not judge whether these practises are
>    necessary, or endorse the use of any specific practise.

I don't really see how this addresses the question we are presently
discussing, which is where I said

"this draft is mostly devoted to documenting the negative
impact of that change on the operations of those entities."

It seems like you disagree with that characterization, but it's not
clear to me why, and this text certainly doesn't address that.

I agree many existing tools would stop working if IPsec formed the majority
> of traffic, same for QUIC. I think when considering what to do next, it can
> be useful to work from the current position and understand the implications
> of changes that are being proposed/used/whatever.

At least from my personal position, this document was providing some input
> to that thinking. So, I do not understand your issue.
Well, it's pretty far upthread, but see the second paragraph of my review:

   First, it's really not clear what purpose this document serves.  While
   superficially an analysis of the impact of transport layer encryption
   as a guide to designers, in the context of the design and deployment
   of QUIC and SCTP/DTLS, both of which encrypt most or all of the
   transport header, it's hard not to read this document as an implicit
   critique of those decisions. It's not like there's some other big
   transport protocol design effort going on in IETF that would be
   informed by these considerations.

I'm not really sure how to state this more clearly.