On protocols [was: Finally: Login via SSH authentication with OpenPGP smart card & 100% Free Software PCMCIA reader]

Lionel Elie Mamane lionel at mamane.lu
Mon Feb 20 06:39:42 CET 2006

On Sun, Feb 19, 2006 at 02:54:13PM -0500, Nicholas Sushkin wrote:
> On Sunday 19 February 2006 01:14, gnupg-users-request at gnupg.org wrote: 
>> On Sat, Feb 18, 2006 at 12:33:03AM +0200, Alon Bar-Lev wrote:

>>> I still don't understand why you use PKCS#1, PKCS#8, X.509, CMC,
>>> S/MIME and more... Why don't you invent some replacements for
>>> these too?

>> Big news for you: We are here precisely because we prefer OpenPGP
>> to S/MIME. And *I* certainly don't use S/MIME. I use X.509 when
>> really, really forced to (for TLS/SSL HTTP, jabber, POP3, IMAP4,
>> ... servers), and then usually in a "flat" mode (self-signed certs,
>> my own CA, ...).

> Realistically speaking, when free software does not interoperate
> with the commercial software with a large mindshare, it's the free
> software loss.

You seem to use "commercial" antagonistically to "free". A software
can be both free (as in freedom) and commercial (that is, written in
the goal of earning money).

Realistically, in the crowds I hang out with, it is OpenPGP that has
the mindshare. So even if I would prefer S/MIME, I'd be forced to use
OpenPGP by the network effect.

Other crowds force you to use S/MIME through the network
effect. That's the nature of social crowds.

And AFAIK, there is free software that supports S/MIME, isn't there? I
have never tried to use them (by lack of any necessity or usefulness:
nobody to communicate _with_), but I'm not hearing that they don't
work or don't interoperate with proprietary implementations.


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