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SSHFP records?

So I learned about SSHFP records at FUDCon and decided to implement them for some of our externally facing sites like cvs.fedoraproject.org, fedorapeople.org and git.fedorahosted.org (and others).

What is an SSHFP record? It's a ssh host key in DNS so you can verify it is correct. For example you can run:

$ dig SSHFP git.fedorahosted.org

Which will get you:

git.fedorahosted.org. 85975 IN SSHFP 2 1 DE382873ABE19B40AEFE714D686E15E16EAD5177
git.fedorahosted.org. 85975 IN SSHFP 1 1 A843ECED826C2F0075888150E89AE4567CD37D7F

So how can you use this information? Set VerifyHostKeyDNS to yes in your ssh_config (man ssh_config for more info, but you'll probably want to place it in your ~/.ssh/config file)


( 8 comments — Leave a comment )
Jan. 5th, 2010 08:29 am (UTC)
monkeysphere FTW
Dude, monkeysphere FTW! Add your SSH keys to the GPG web of trust.

Jan. 5th, 2010 09:53 am (UTC)
Security of DNS ?
NB, it appears that using DNS for distributing SSH host keys is only secure if both the SSH client machine & Fedora's DNS servers are using DNSSEC, otherwise you can't trust those SSHFP records


[quote 4. Security Considerations]
The overall security of using SSHFP for SSH host key verification is
dependent on the security policies of the SSH host administrator and
DNS zone administrator (in transferring the fingerprint), detailed
aspects of how verification is done in the SSH implementation, and in
the client's diligence in accessing the DNS in a secure manner.

Jan. 5th, 2010 12:40 pm (UTC)
Re: Security of DNS ?
Having the security that depend on ssh and dns seems slightly better than depending on ssh alone. I would also say we need to test this right now, so we will have enough experience when DNSSEC will be more widely deployed.
Jan. 5th, 2010 12:53 pm (UTC)
Re: Security of DNS ?
The current system is not depending on ssh alone. If you SSH to any Fedora server, it is possible to verify the keys against the published values hosted on a secure HTTPS source


Admittedly this is a manual verification process, but the data source itself can be trusted assuming the webserver has a suitably signed certificate. If you do not use DNSSEC, then to use SSHFP is to replace a secure, manual process with an insecure, automated process. This does not seem like a win to me.
Jan. 5th, 2010 02:42 pm (UTC)
Re: Security of DNS ?
we're not replacing anything, just adding additional ways of doing verification. In our case almost no one knows about fingerprints but there are people doing sshfp verifiction (think fedorahosted where people aren't that involved in Fedora but are contributing to upstream code).

Also, we have dnssec configured but not completely setup yet.
Jan. 5th, 2010 04:33 pm (UTC)
I've never heard of SSHFP, but it's pretty cool. Thanks for the info.
Aug. 9th, 2010 09:18 pm (UTC)
My own mksshfp script.
Note that "sshfp" kind of sucks, so I threw together a quick "mksshfp" which sucks in different ways and you can get it from http://jafo.tummy.com/mksshfp

It doesn't take any options, but it *DOES* look in your configs to try to find all your known_hosts files (via the GlobalKnownHostsFile option) and it does seem to display information about known_hosts entries that "sshfp" didn't seem to.

Dec. 20th, 2010 08:10 am (UTC)
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