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Security: Signed Java support for Eclipse Platform and IDE

To facilitate the adoption of signed Java content on the Eclipse platform, it is important to address the lack of signing functionality outside of the basic ‘jarsigner’ tool packaged with the JRE. The Java code that makes up Eclipse itself is signed as of the 3.3 release, and the Eclipse update-manager supports verification of those signatures as features are installed into the system. Future work direction intends to add more granular signature policy enforcement, including OSGi loadtime and eventually at runtime via Java’s fine-grained permission architecture.

There are several areas that will require additional support to create and manage signed Java code - this document is an attempt to capture a draft list:

Show the signer info for signed content

Anywhere that signed content appears in the IDE or the Platform, it must be possible to navigate to a viewer that shows the verified signature information. This includes, but is not limited to:

  1. Compiled classes in Projects
  2. Classes contained in Jar files
  3. Plug-ins installed in the Platform**

**Complete in 3.3, see 'Help->About' and select 'Plug-in details'

Support a Project running as if signed at runtime

When running a debug scenario, it must be possible to run as if the classes in the workspace projects are inside signed jarfiles. This implies that a project will have a well formed META-INF/ that lists signer information, as well as the other files that are required to comprise a valid jarfile signature. For more information on the jarfile signature format, see here.

View the signer configuration for a Project

It must be possible to configure a Project such that the contents are signed when compiled and run, and to have default configuration for signing when exported to a jarfile. The jarfile format supports multiple signers, this must be supported - perhaps by pairing sets of resources to be signed with a KeyStore and alias that will be used to reference a Key that will be used during the signing operation. Minimally, KeyStores in the following locations should be supported:

  1. Keystores plugged into the system (i.e.: the %HOME%\.keystore file)
  2. Specific Keystores in the Project

For more information on Credential Management, including how KeyStores might be made available to the system, see here.

Invoke the signing operation on Projects

Given a signing configuration, it must be possible to initiate the creation of the supporting files for a valid signature. A project must be configurable to invoke signing after a successful build is performed, or at a specific time via the context menu.

Invoke the signing operation on Jar files

In addition to signing projects, it may be useful to sign jarfiles that are located in and referenced by projects in the workspace.

Support enablement of secure modes in Run.. configurations

As support for checking signatures at load-time with OSGi and run-time with Java’s SecurityManager are developed, the IDE must also expose the capability to enable and configure the mechanisms that enable these functions. In the case of SecurityManager, this will involve setting the –D option to select an implementation via a checkbox and selector in the Run… dialog.

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