[rc5] keyspace flaw

Henry W Miller mill0440 at gold.tc.umn.edu
Tue Jun 3 17:15:56 EDT 1997



On Tue, 3 Jun 1997, Benedikt Eric Heinen wrote:

> What would you think about building a proxy server dedicated to recycling
> key blocks?
> 
> which would indicate that 5.03% of all possible blocks weren given out -
> 1.77% reported back, 3.26% didn't. That leaves enough distance between 0
> and the current block to build one proxy server that just recycles
> keyblocks, without having to fear that it'll start handing out blocks that
> were only given out 5 minutes ago... ;)

(others have pointed out we didn't start at 0)

I've don'e several blocks, and then noticed that the proxy wasn't 
accepting my report.  I just stoped my clinet and restarted, on a 
different proxy.  Thus there are many blocks out there that are 
un-reported but checked.  Rather then assuming that the unreturned blocks 
aren't searched, we should assume that unreturned blocks are partially 
searched.  Any server devoted to recycling keys *SHOULD* report half the
key'sec rate, since some of those keys are searched.  (remember comptuers 
tend to crash half way through a key block, not just after reporting a 
key and before getting the next.  

The point: why research what someone else may have done when we can do 
something that has never been tried.  Even if 2/3rds of all keys are not 
returned the odds favor the key being in the unsearched place, not in the 
unreturned keyspace, and will for several years at the current rate.
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