|Final Release Repository|
Phase 2 of the TrueCrypt Audit is on:Truecrypt Phase Two Audit Announced
And see why the TrueCrypt spinoffs are violations of the TrueCrypt license.
Although the disappearance of the TrueCrypt site, whose ever-presence the Internet community long ago grew to take for granted, shocked and surprised many, it clearly came as no surprise to the developers who maintained the site and its namesake code for the past ten years. An analysis of the extensive changes made to TrueCrypt's swan song v7.2 release, and to the code's updated v3.1 license, shows that this departure, which was unveiled without preamble, was in fact quite well planned.
For reasons that remain a titillating source of hypothesis, intrigue and paranoia, TrueCrypt's developers chose not to graciously turn their beloved creation over to a wider Internet development community, but rather, as has always been their right granted by TrueCrypt's longstanding license, to attempt to kill it off by creating a dramatically neutered 7.2 version that can only be used to view, but no longer to create new, TrueCrypt volumes.
Then, leveraging the perverse and wrongheaded belief that software whose support was just cancelled renders it immediately untrustworthy, they attempted to foreclose on TrueCrypt's current and continued use by warning the industry that future problems would remain unrepaired. This being said of the latest 7.1a version of the code that has been used by millions, without change, since its release in February of 2012, more than 27 months before. Suddenly, for no disclosed reason, we should no longer trust it?
But that's not the way the Internet works. Having created something of such enduring value, which inherently requires significant trust and buy-in, they are rightly unable to now take it back. They might be done with it, but the rest of us are not.
The developers' jealousy is perhaps made more understandable by examining the code they have created. It is truly lovely. It is beautifully constructed. It is amazing work to be deeply proud of. Creating something of TrueCrypt's size and complexity, and holding it together as they did across the span of a decade, is a monumental and truly impressive feat of discipline. So it is entirely understandable when they imply, as quoted below, that they don't trust anyone else to completely understand and maintain their creation as they have. Indeed, it will not be easy. They might look at the coding nightmare atrocity that OpenSSL became over the same span of time and think: “Better to kill off our perfect creation than turn it over to others and have it become that.”
TrueCrypt's creators may well be correct. TrueCrypt may never be as pure and perfect as it is at this moment, today—in the form they created and perfected. Their true final version, 7.1a, may be the pinnacle of this story. So anyone would and should be proud to use and to continue to use this beautiful tool as it is today.
TrueCrypt's formal code audit will continue as planned. Then the code will be forked, the product's license restructured, and it will evolve. The name will be changed because the developers wish to preserve the integrity of the name they have built. They won't allow their name to continue without them. But the world will get some future version, that runs on future operating systems, and future mass storage systems.
There will be continuity . . . as an interesting new chapter of Internet lore is born.
So it appears that the unexpected (putting it mildly) disappearance of TrueCrypt.org and the startling disavowal of TrueCrypt's bullet proof security will turn out to be a brief disturbance in the force. We should know much more about a trustworthy TrueCrypt in the late summer of 2014.
Time to panic?No. The TrueCrypt development team's deliberately alarming and unexpected “goodbye and you'd better stop using TrueCrypt” posting stating that TrueCrypt is suddenly insecure (for no stated reason) appears only to mean that if any problems were to be subsequently found, they would no longer be fixed by the original TrueCrypt developer team . . . much like Windows XP after May of 2014. In other words, we're on our own.
But that's okay, since we now know that TrueCrypt is regarded as important enough (see tweets above from the Open Crypto Audit and Linux Foundation projects) to be kept alive by the Internet community as a whole.
So, thanks guys . . . we'll take it from here.
|Note that once TrueCrypt has been independently audited|
it will be the only mass storage encryption solution to have
been audited. This will likely cement TrueCrypt's position
as the top, cross-platform, mass storage encryption tool.
My two blog postings on the day, and the day after, TrueCrypt's self-takedown:
My third and final posting about this page, in order to allow feedback.
The posting generated many interesting comments:
And then the TrueCrypt developers were heard from . . .Steven Barnhart (@stevebarnhart) wrote to an eMail address he had used before and received several replies from “David.” The following snippets were taken from a twitter conversation which then took place between Steven Barnhart (@stevebarnhart) and Matthew Green (@matthew_d_green):
|TrueCrypt v7.1a installation packages:||Downloads|
|• TrueCrypt Setup 7.1a.exe (32/64-bit Windows)||136,859|
|• TrueCrypt 7.1a Mac OS X.dmg||34,883|
|The TrueCrypt User's Guide for v7.1a:|
|• TrueCrypt User Guide.pdf||80,399|
|The TrueCrypt v7.1a source code as a gzipped TAR and a ZIP:|
|• TrueCrypt 7.1a Source.tar.gz||15,261|
|• TrueCrypt 7.1a Source.zip||19,099|
Additional online TrueCrypt sites and repositories:
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|Last Edit: Feb 18, 2015 at 15:41 (8.32 days ago)||Viewed 1,723 times per day|