kr-cmds and dropping login.krb5 (was RE: Is anyone or a group of people able to maintain appl/bsd betterthan MIT) Nicolas.Williams at
Wed Jul 24 17:04:00 EDT 2002

On Wednesday, July 24, Russ Allbery wrote:
> I agree with Booker here in that I think it definitely requires work,
> although I'm perhaps a bit more optimistic about how much work it
> requires.  I simply don't see much alternative.  We need them 
> and we'll
> have to maintain them one way or another.  I don't expect to 
> see the world
> in which we can replace them all with ssh any time soon, particularly
> given the security problems that are plaguing ssh implementations.

I see no reason not to use OpenSSH w/ Simon's patches. Bugs are bugs;
they happen. And it so happens that OpenSSH is easier to maintain than
the MIT BSD-derived kerberized r-commands and login.krb5; well, to me
it is. It's all in the eye of the beholder, I suppose, but I see far
more development/support activity around OpenSSH than I do around the
MIT krb5 appl/bsd/* stuff, and I see OpenSSH as being much cleaner,
and I have no major complaints about the OpenSSH track record with
respect to security bug fixes - as for the track record with respect
to bug occurrence, that's already been dealt with here.

And this is as it should be. I would like the MIT folk to be able to
concentrate on improving the libraries and the KDC/kadmin stuff - the
core of MIT krb5.


> I know it would really be nice from our perspective to figure 
> out vaguely
> clean ways to do the things that we need to do (like support for users
> without .klogin / .k5login files under certain circumstances, 
> stuff like
> that that isn't particularly clean but is important to a 
> large percentage
> of our user base) that could go into central CVS somewhere so that we
> don't have to keep maintaining them as local patches and doing nasty
> merges with every new release of Kerberos.  Even if we still have to
> maintain all of that code, just not having to do merges would 
> save a chunk
> of time.

Well, let's see, OpenSSH w/ Simon's GSS patches and MIT or Heimdal
krb5 supports the use of GSS/Kerberos for network authentication,
and the sshd doesn't actually need or use login.krb5, not at all.

It does depend on krb5_kuserok(), and therefore on ~/.k5login /
krb5_aname_to_lname() (which you state you don't want). UNLESS you
have my patches, or write some like them, which allow authorization
based on Kerberos principal names via authorized_keys entries -
since you can tell sshd where the auth_keys files live you need
not depend on ~/.k5login.

So why, oh why must we keep login.krb5, with or without local hacks?

I would not mind sticking with MIT krb5's telnetd if it could be
easily configured to use /bin/login, but that's not the case - and
I do need a kerberized telnet daemon for Unix that uses /bin/login.

IMO, krlogin/klogind/krsh/krshd should be easy to implement and
maintain if:

 - login.krb5 is dropped (krsh/krshd doesn't use login.krb5)
 - krb4 support is dropped

Dropping login.krb5 requires that /bin/login support the -f option,
which is indeed generally supported by OSs that support rlogind /

Consider that dropping login.krb5 means dropping all that ugly
OS-specific code, such as the utmp code.



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