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MaraDNS now has funding


April 1 2012

In today's blog entry (for April 1, 2012), I discuss MaraDNS' funding and my development plans.

MaraDNS now has funding

I am very pleased to let the community of MaraDNS users know that I have gotten a $1,048,576 USD grant from an anonymous donor. In light of this, I will be able to implement some features I have been meaning to implement in MaraDNS.


First of all, this funding will give me a chance to fully implement DNSSEC and DNSCurve. Due to the amount of code that needs to be written, I will hire Dan Kaminsky to help me implement the DNSSEC code, as well has contracting Daniel J. Bernstein to write the DNSCurve code.

The code will be in separate modules and I hope it will be possible to compile MaraDNS and Deadwood with both DNSSEC and DNSCurve support at the same time; this is a logistical issue we will work out.

Random number generator

In addition to contracting Daniel J. Bernstein to write the DNSCurve code, I will also bring in Guido Bertoni, Joan Daemen, Michael Peeters, and Gilles Van Assche who will work with Bernstein in implementing a high-speed cryptographic block cipher with a 1024-bit block size on 32-bit platforms, a 2048-bit block size on 64-bit platforms, a 4096-bit block size on 128-bit platforms, as well as a 1152-bit block size on 36-bit platforms for our substantial number of users who run MaraDNS and Deadwood on PDP-10s.

This block cipher primitive will be used in a sponge mode of operation as a pseudo-random number generator for Deadwood.

We will also research making a hash compression primitive for 32-bit, 36-bit, 64-bit, and 128-bit platforms which is both very fast and cryptographically secure from collisions as long as our attacker doesn't know the primitive's randomly generated secret number.

Other plans

I was hoping to be able to implement a 20nm 128-bit version of the 6502 processor with memory management and protected mode, as well as a series of op codes to make processing DNS packets faster (such as FINDDNSLABEL). Unfortunately, my anonymous donor will not give me the $5 billion grant needed to implement this processor until our team successfully implements DNSSEC, DNSCurve, as well as the large-block-size cipher, not to mention the secure hash compressor.

This should all be done within a year, and I will then be able to get a larger grant. I will let people know what that grant will let us do a year from today, on Monday, April 1, 2013.

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