Openpgp card serial numbers

Werner Koch wk at
Tue Jul 17 15:06:21 CEST 2007

On Mon, 16 Jul 2007 11:50, ged at said:

> The specification for Openpgp card states that the serial number
> (+ manufacturers ID) must be globally unique. I wonder if this is truly
> needed or if "unique enough" would be ok.

I have assigned the unmanaged S/N range:

  FF00..FFFE - Range reserved for randomly assigned serial numbers.
         Serialnumbers with manufacturer ID in this range are an
         exception to the rule that they should be unique.  It is
         expected that such a serialnumber is assigned using a true
         random function which generates 5 bytes (4 for the actual
         serial number and one to select a manufacturer ID out of this
         range). Note, that the 0xffff is not part of this range.
         Implementers using serial numbers as a unique ID should keep in
         mind that duplicates may happen.  Using the of manufacturer IDs
         out of this range should only be done if no other way of
         obtaining a manufacturer ID is possible.
         [Assigned 2007-07-17] 
I hope this satisfies your need.  As written, it is an expection and
should be avoided.  In particular, if you target one specific card type
it might be possible to use its native S/N and map it to a a proper
serial number.  We can then ask for a manufacturer ID to be used with
this card and application.


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