More Than Five Years In The Making: Creating A New Linux Random Number Generator

Written by Michael Larabel in Linux Security on 14 July 2021 at 05:48 AM EDT. 17 Comments
The "Linux Random Number Generator" (LRNG) effort as a new drop-in replacement for /dev/random is now up to its 41st revision and in development for more than five years.

Stephan Müller today posted his latest patch series for LRNG as his proposed new approach for handling /dev/random while being a drop-in replacement with API/ABI compatibility to the existing generator.

LRNG aims to be faster by "up to 130%" compared to the current /dev/random along with a variety of other performance optimizations, various crypto handling improvements, improved testing abilities, greater configurability of options, and is of a more modern design.

The v41 patches of LRNG have a clean-up of the initial seeding code, zeroize the seed buffer, initialize the entropy value if there is insufficient entropy, harden the entropy source configuration, and a variety of other low-level improvements to this random number generator code.

It remains to be seen if/when LRNG will finally be deemed ready for mainline, but those curious about this long journey around a new Linux random number generator implementation can find today's 13 patch series on the kernel mailing list.
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