A good cockerel always points north

Monday, 11 February 2008

I spent a while yesterday thinking over the software projects that I'm currently interested in. It is a reasonably short list.

At the time I just looked over the packages that I've got installed and the number of bugs. I'm a little disappointed to see that the bugfixes that I applied to GNU screen have been mostly ignored.

Still I have the day off work on Thursday and Friday this week and would probbly spend it releasing the pending advisories I've got in my queue, and then fixing N bugs in a single package.

The alternative is to build a quick GPG-based mailing list manager.

I'd like a simple system which allowed users to subscribe, and only accepted GPG-signed mails. The subscriber could choose to receive their messages either signed (as-is) by the submitter or encrypted to them.

So to join you'd do something like this:

subscribe foo@example.org [encrypted]
--BEGIN PUBLIC KEY --
...
--ND PUBLIC KEY--

There is the risk, with a large enough number of users, that a list could DOS the host if it had to encrypt each message to each subscribers. But if the submissions were validated as being signed by a user with a known key it should be minimal, unless there is a lot of traffic.

The cases are simple:

  • foo-subscribe => Add the user to the list, assuming valid key data found
  • foo-unsubscribe => Do the reverse.
  • foo:
    • If the message is signed accept and either mail to each recipient, or encrypt on a per-recipient basis.
    • If the message is not signed, or signed by a non-subscriber drop it.

There are some random hacks out there for this, including a mailman patch (did I mention how much I detest mailman yet today?) but nothing recent.

| 1 comment.

 

Comments On This Entry

[gravitar] Joachim Breitner

Submitted at 10:52:04 on 12 february 2008

Hi,
there are some encrypted mailing lists in the wild, for example the internal mailing list of entropia (http://entropia.de/), in case you want to discuss your setup with them.
Greetings, Joachim

 

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