[Git][NTPsec/ntpsec][master] More thoughts on NTPv5.

Eric S. Raymond gitlab at mg.gitlab.com
Sun Aug 27 12:40:30 UTC 2017

Eric S. Raymond pushed to branch master at NTPsec / ntpsec

1ad6b464 by Eric S. Raymond at 2017-08-27T08:26:40-04:00
More thoughts on NTPv5.

- - - - -

1 changed file:

- devel/ntpv5.txt


--- a/devel/ntpv5.txt
+++ b/devel/ntpv5.txt
@@ -125,5 +125,41 @@ that PNG chunks have only two-byte lengths and always end with a CRC.
 This chunk system is deliberately more similar to RFC7822 extension
+== Daniel weighs in ==
+There aren't many deficiencies in NTPv4 which can't be fixed by adding
+extension fields. A change big enough to make a version bump
+worthwhile would incorporate at least most of the following:
+1. Drop everything other than client/server mode. Replace mode 6 with
+something that runs over HTTPS on the NTS-KE port.
+2. Let client and server packets be formatted differently. Achieve
+data minimization by just taking the unnecessary fields out of client
+packets altogether.
+3. Forbid use of the legacy MAC field, thus fixing the hairiness
+around extension parsing.
+4. Make NTS mandatory. In the NTPv5 packet format, the version, mode,
+NTS unique identifier, and (in client packets) NTS cookie come first
+in plaintext, then the whole rest of the packet is encrypted.
+5. Ditch the useless poll, stratum, refid, and reference timestamp
+fields. Given that all of the above are implemented, origin timestamp
+also becomes redundant (NTS takes the place of its anti-spoofing
+6. Represent timestamps as days, seconds, and fractions so that the
+time can be represented unambiguously during leap seconds. Make the
+day field 64 bits wide so that its range comfortable exceeds the
+lifespan of the solar system.
+7. Don't implement leap smearing in the wire protocol (servers should
+always report accurate, unsmeared time), but standardize a formula for
+translating NTP time into smeared UNIX time seen by other
 // end

View it on GitLab: https://gitlab.com/NTPsec/ntpsec/commit/1ad6b46486e8f8af44bd571bc39f7b74559a668a

View it on GitLab: https://gitlab.com/NTPsec/ntpsec/commit/1ad6b46486e8f8af44bd571bc39f7b74559a668a
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