Tag Archives: New Roots

Successful process tests of New Root and Escrow and Class 1 Root resigning

On Sunday at FrOSCon 10 CAcert successfully tested the New Root and Escrow (NRE) process and performed a test run of the long expected Class 1 Resigning.

Members of the software team, the critical admins, the NRE team, and the internal auditor met in a session, which was open to the public, to test these long prepared tasks.

The process started with checking that the needed hardware was running and was setup up according to the process definition. In a first step the defined tasks were then executed manually to proof that the procedures produces the desired results. In a second step the manual tasks were automated where possible and the script was tested and checked according to the process definition.

The results show the expected outcome.

The internal auditor was pleased with the good and professional preparation of the test and the successful outcome. The new root keys created during the NRE test will be used for a test server based on Gigi and Cassiopeia.

Related Information:

The Big Masterplan to become Audit Ready

Back in January 2010 the former Board decided by Board motion m20100117.3 “No new subroots on current root, plan for new root”. In the discussion a date was scheduled by end of Dec 31, 2010. On my 2nd thought, probably nobody did recognize, what that means, CAcert's Big Masterplan To become Audit Ready (01/2010) to finish all the projects from the bottom left corner at beginning of 2010 to the top right corner by end of the year with the “New Roots and Escrow” (New Roots and Escrow) process running. So this article should bring Audits mistery to light.

Policy Group worked on the last few essential Policies (Policies on Policy Group), that are essential for the Audit. One essential requirement for Audit is to Rollout the CAcert Community Agreement to all the members, so they can decide to continue or to leave the Community. To become “CCA Rollout Ready” (CCA rollout), the running Software needs to be updated. This opens the next problem: by starting 2010, there was no Software Update Process defined, nor documented. But we’re on the lucky side, the Software-Assessment-Project started November last year to fulfill this requirement (Software-Assessment-Project). The task was: To get a repository system controlled by Software-Assessment team, a controlled testserver environment and a documentation system. Currently the team tests the transfer of a test patch to the production system. Involved parties: Software-Assessment Project team, Software-Assessment team and the Critical Sysadmins team.

CAcert's Big Masterplan To become Audit Ready (10/2010)
CAcert’s Big Masterplan To become Audit Ready (10/2010)

In the meantime, another issue pop’d up: the “Thawte points removal” with a deadline of Nov 16th, 2010. We’ve allready posted several blog posts on this topic. So also this is related onto the Software-Assessment-Project progress (Software-Assessment-Project).

The next topic is running Assurer Training Events (ATE) (Assurer Training Events). ATE’s are an essential concept in the Audit over Assurance (RA) business area. To scale a worldwide community, the community has to assist Auditors work in doing Co-Audits over Assurers. The question: How to contact groups of Assurers was answered back in 2009 with the ATE concept. The purpose of ATE is twofolded: first to communicate to the Assurers all the new informations and second to do Co-Audits. As Assurers follows the invitations to the ATEs we can expect, that they are more active in the community. So also from 2009 ATE experiences, we’ve got new resources from the community by contacts on ATEs (Get new resources). So this was the plan for 2010 ATE season, to find more people, who can help on the several tasks and projects that needs to be finished, before the new Roots and Escrow project and also the Audit can be (re-)started. E.g.

Helping CAcert

  • we are searching Infrastructure Admins for the Non-Critical Infrastructure systems, all running on Unix. Familiar with system migrations for the big Infrastructure project to separate Non-Critical from the Critical systems (The big Infrastructure Task). This project is running about 2 years, but currently without progress.
  • we are searching for Software Developers (C++, Python, Java) for the New Software project BirdShack (New Software Project BirdShack), that was started last year, after Auditors review of the Software that concludes: „Serious difficulties in maintaining, improving and securing.” and „Cannot form conclusion over software.”, so if the plan to start with the Audit over the old Software fails, we’re close to the 2nd path: BirdShack.
  • we are searching for Audit consultants who can assists in the Audit next step CrowdIt disclosure system (read AGM – Audit Report 2010 – CrowdIt. CrowdIt, as a sort of wordplay on Crowd-Audit). CrowdIt is an emerging disclosure tool (based on the old DRC browser).
  • we are searching people, who can assist us in the funding project (Funding project), that becomes the ground base for the New Roots and Escrow project (New Roots and Escrow) that should be keep tracked by an Auditor, and the re-start of the Audit (Audit over Assurance (RA) 1) and (Audit over Systems (CA) 2).

The New Roots and Escrow Project Relation to Audit

As said before, the New Roots and Escrow Project should be keep tracked by an Auditor. From the experiences back in 2008 on creating New Roots but fail on Roots Escrow, we’re warned to separate the Audit steps of the New Roots and Escrow Project (New Roots and Escrow) and the Audit over Systems (Audit over Systems (CA) 2). Both tasks should be close together.

On the other side, we have to do an Audit over Assurance (Registration Authority, RA) (Audit over Assurance (RA) 1). There is no requirement on bundling the RA Audit and CA Audit as both business areas have their own Policy sets and can be checked separately. This can make our work presumably easier. Easier to get Audit funding for Audit over RA. As Assurance area is closer to be Audit Ready, we can also signal to the Community Audit is back on track. This will probably push the other tasks. With a small budget we probably can double the result by getting new resources, “Hey, there is progress on the overall Audit task” – CAcert is back!