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Security: KeyStore support for Eclipse

KeyStore support for Eclipse

Draft Requirements and High-level Discussion

On the path to enabling code-signer based security in Eclipse via enabling the Java SecurityManager, several infrastructure improvements must be implemented in both the RCP and the IDE. One of the first enhancements required is the ability to manage the user's keys and trusted certificates. In Java, the interface that abstracts these concepts is the This API provides methods for getting and setting implementations of the and into an abstract storage repository. This store can be backed by a flat file (as with the default Java KeyStore - "JKS"), an encrypted file (as with the JCE KeyStore - "JCEKS") or common file formats like PKCS12. Other options include Smartcards, or network based repositories. There are several usages for the KeyStore in Eclipse:

  1. As a repository for Certificates used for trust decisions:
    1. When installing and loading signed classes from bundles
    2. When making SSL connections
  2. As a repository for a user's Keys:
    1. When used for signing Jar files
    2. When needed for SSL client authentication
    3. Passwords for connecting to CVS (via PBEKey)
  3. For validating a password for login to the Platform

The method of installing KeyStores into the system is the Java Cryptography Architecture (JCA), which relies on installing and accessing implementations of via the class. The Provider class is responsible for maintaining an internal list of supported algorithms that is supports, of which KeyStore is one example. The algorithms supported are each of a specific type, for example “KeyStore.JKS“ or “KeyStore.PKCS12”. Providers maintain their list of supported algorithm types internally, and can be registered into the system declaratively in %JRE_HOME%\lib\security by classname like so:

# List of providers and their preference orders (see above):

When registered declaratively, the implementation of the Provider class must be visible to the extension classloader (%JRE_HOME%\lib\ext) or lower (i.e.: on the boot classpath). Providers can also be registered dynamically, like so:

Security.insertProviderAt( new MyProvider(), 1);

See the Java Cryptography Architecture specification for more information on the JCA.

Obtaining an instance of a KeyStore is done via the static getInstance method on the KeyStore class. The 0-argument getInstance method will return an instance of the type specified by the Security property keystore.type, by calling the providers in order until the first Provider which supports the type is found. The other getInstance methods allow the caller to specify a specific type or a specific provider and type.

The KeyStore engine may then require an InputStream from which to load, potentially with a password which is used to verify the integrity of the store. There is no contract that a KeyStore requires a password, nor is there a contract for requiring an InputStream (consider the case of a Smartcard-based KeyStore which is implicitly available when the Smartcard is inserted). An example of obtaining and loading a KeyStore:

KeyStore keyStore = KeyStore.getInstance("JKS");
String fileName = System.getProperty("java.home") + 
FileInputStream stream = new FileInputStream(new File(fileName));
keyStore.load( stream, "storeit".toCharArray());

In the context of Eclipse, the system needs to understand what potential KeyStore support is available (JKS,JCEKS,PKCS12,etc) from the runtime JRE. It also needs to be able to manage the System default KeyStore, and zero or more user KeyStores where users can manage their own trust model and credentials (by convention in traditional Java applications, this is a JKS at %USER_HOME%\.keystore). These KeyStores are used for determining trust as bundles and code are loaded, and will be used for storing Keys for use in signing code.

Here is a list of initial actions that are required to support KeyStore in the system:

Viewing the available KeyStore providers

As mentioned earlier, the Java security system is preconfigured with a list of providers available in %JRE_HOME%\lib\security, and providers can be dynamically installed into the system. A user interface is required for viewing the security configuration of the system for advanced users (like developers), although it will likely be hidden in a typical RCP application.

Configuring a KeyStore provider's extended attributes

There are several additional attributes that are useful for managing Eclipse’s interaction with KeyStore instances. One example is how to collect a KeyStore password when it is required. Matching attributes need to be contributed for each security provider which contributes a KeyStore type. Here is a list of potential attributes:

  1. Whether a password is required, and how to gather it
  2. Whether an InputStream is required, and how to locate it
  3. Whether the entry passwords are different than the store password, and how to gather them
  4. What file extensions are supported by this KeyStore provider (e.g.: for decorating files in the IDE, or determining what is supported by a File->Open operation)
  5. .....

Viewing the system KeyStore (cacerts)

A typical Java application (plus built in APIs like JarInputStream, and the OSGi JarVerifier) rely on trust that is derived from a Certificate's presence in the system KeyStore, which is located at %JRE_HOME%\lib\cacerts. The cacerts file is a standard Java KeyStore ("JKS") and has a default password of "storeit" (without quotes). In some scenarios, this file will be writeable by the user who is running the Platform - in other scenarios the file permissions will be such that the file is read-only. This is a common limitation on systems where the JRE is shared across multiple applications or users. Here are some scenarios that must be supported by the Platform:

  1. Viewing the list of trusted Certificates
  2. Viewing a particular Certificate's details
  3. Removing a trusted Certificate from the KeyStore (**if allowed)
  4. Importing a trusted Certificate into the KeyStore (**if allowed)
  5. Changing the modifiable attributes of a Certificate (e.g.: alias) (**if allowed)
  6. ....

**Edit will only be allowed if the user has write access to the JRE <tt>cacerts</tt> file

Viewing the user KeyStore (.keystore)

In addition to the system cacerts file, many Java applications use a Java KeyStore (JKS) in the user’s %HOME% directory to store Keys and Certificates. This may not be the ideal location for an Eclipse application, and will thus be configurable. Regardless of location, the following user related scenarios will have to be supported:

  1. Viewing the list of user Keys and trusted Certificates
  2. Viewing a Key or Certificate's details
  3. Generating a new Key or Certificate
  4. Importing a new Key or Certificate
  5. Removing an existing Key or Certificate
  6. Changing the modifiable attributes of a Key or Certificate (e.g.: alias, password)
  7. .....

Changing the system and user KeyStore configurations

As mentioned above, there are cases where the KeyStore may not be a standard "JKS" KeyStore, and another KeyStore implementation may be appropriate (Smartcards, etc). The system must then allow for the type and other details of the user KeyStore to be configurable. This may also be true for the System KeyStore, depending on how much signature and trust management responsibility is removed from the JRE and implemented in OSGI and the Eclipse runtime.

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