Re: Patch attestation RFC + proof of concept

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On Wed, Feb 26, 2020 at 04:11:40PM -0400, Jason Gunthorpe wrote:
> > If you look at the contents of the patch attestation message 
> > (, 
> > you will notice a yaml-style formatted document with a series of 
> > three hashes. Let's take the first one as example:
> > 
> > 2a02abe0-215cf3f1-2acb5798:
> >   i: 2a02abe02216f626105622aee2f26ab10c155b6442e23441d90fc5fe4071b86e
> >   m: 215cf3f133478917ad147a6eda1010a9c4bba1846e7dd35295e9a0081559e9b0
> >   p: 2acb5798c366f97501f8feacb873327bac161951ce83e90f04bbcde32e993865
> > 
> > The source of these hashes is the following patch:
> >
> If you define an alternative message signature algorithm like this,
> then is there still value in detatching the PGP signature from the
> patch email?

I believe that yes, because it offers better workflows around the
following scenarios:

- developer does all their work on a remote VM that doesn't have access 
  to their PGP keys and submits actual attestation when they get back to 
  their workstation
- developer configures their smartcard to require a PIN during each 
  operation and disables the pgp-agent; sending a series of 40 patches 
  requires a single PIN entry instead of 40
- developer submits a v1 of the patch that they don't expect to pass on 
  the first try and doesn't bother submitting attestation; shockingly,
  the maintainer accepts it as-is and the developer can attest their 
  patches post-fact *without* needing to collect all the acked-by's 
  reviewed-by's etc from all others who have already responded to the v1 

> The usual PGP signature computes a hash of the message in a certain
> way (with unquoting etc). If you instead replace that with your method
> and then just generate the normal base64 blob using:
>   msg_hash = HASH(HASH(i) || HASH(m) || HASH(p))
>   sig = RSA_Sign(msg_hash)

The reason I want to leave i/m/p hashes individually present is because 
it makes it possible to query patch attestation information based on a 
subset of full information.

For example, a maintainer will almost certainly edit the message content 
to add their own Signed-off-by, and may edit the patch for minor 
nitpicking. Full i-m-p attestation will fail in this case, but we can 
then query the signatures archive for each individual hash to identify 
which part of the submission fails validation:

This lets us present the maintainer with more useful info, like: "full 
attestation failed, but the only changed part is actually the message 
and not the patch content, so it's probably still okay to apply."

> Then the base64 of the sig can just be dropped at the end of the
> message, and doesn't need to be detached, or need the various ---BEGIN
> PGP--- overheads
> The magic I see here is defining a way to compute the message hash of
> a patch email that doesn't cause a big mess.

I still think that one of the key benefits of this proposal is being 
able to submit patch attestation data post-fact. For signatures included 
with patches, I'd rather see this happen during the git-format-patch 
step following Vagard Nossum's work of fully reconstructing commits from 
patches -- see my email to the git list here:


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