Re: your mail

Jason Burrell (
Tue, 26 Nov 1996 09:23:42 -0600 (CST)

On Mon, 25 Nov 1996, Nathan Bryant wrote:

> > Todd T. Fries wrote:
> >
> > > Perhaps someone could browse to and see if their
> > > suggestion of going through Canada are valid?
> For people who don't know, he's referring to a scheme where someone in the
> U.S. would export cryptography software to someone in Canada, who would
> then turn around and re-export the software to the rest of the world.
> This won't work; a U.S. resident who exports crypto to Canada with the
> intention of having someone in Canada re-export the software WILL be
> prosecutable in the U.S. Big Brother is watching!
> For any cryptography to be integrated into the mainline Linux kernel, the
> cryptography will have to be implemented outside the U.S., and the kernel
> will have to be maintained from outsided the U.S. Unless the cryptography
> is usable only for authentication. Additionally, once crypto gets into the
> mainline kernel, the kernel will not be re-exportable from the U.S.

Someone a while back created IDEA and DES patches to allow the loopback
filesystem device to use encryption. It doesn't work in later kernels,
though, and I haven't had time to fix it.

If we provide a very generic interface to the kernel, I figure we can
implement this in modules. This would also (hopefully) get around the
stupid "no-hooks" provision in ITAR, but I'm not a lawyer.

For filesystems, we could probably just create another filesystem. Make
that compilable as a module, or directly into the kernel via a patch. Then
if I want 100MB of my disk encrypted, I make a crypto-fs, and mount it.