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Date: Tue, 2 Sep 2014 02:21:19 +0400
From: Solar Designer <>
Subject: Re: [PHC] friendly warning about randomness tests

On Mon, Sep 01, 2014 at 09:53:08PM +0000, Brandon Enright wrote:
> Yes.  Nmap (the port scanner) uses a LCG with some basic tweaks to it
> for generating "random" IP addresses to be scanned without producing
> any duplicates before cycling through all 2^32 IPs (Nmap's -iR feature).
> This passes every Dieharder randomness test.  It's probably not
> surprising but Dieharder doesn't have a check for treating the output
> as 32 bit numbers and then looking for expected duplicates.  If it did
> though Nmap's PRNG would obviously fail.

FWIW, extra/analyze.c included in the yescrypt submission should detect
the lack of duplicate 32-bit numbers.

Maybe we should run it on pre-final-hashing memory contents of PHC
candidates too.  (Naturally, I already did that for yescrypt.)

Failing randomness tests on pre-final-hashing memory contents is not
necessarily fatal (on actual PHS() outputs, it is), but it's useful
information for our analysis and decision-making.

> Randomness tests give me zero additional confidence in any candidate.

... but failing randomness tests give us additional concerns.


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