term% ls -F
term% cat index.txt
FACTOTUM(4)                Kernel Interfaces Manual                FACTOTUM(4)

       factotum, fgui - authentication agent

       auth/factotum [ -DdknpuS ] [ -a asaddr ] [ -s srvname ] [ -m mtpt ]

       auth/factotum -g attribute=value ...  attribute?  ...


       Factotum  is  a  user-level file system that acts as the authentication
       agent for a user.  It does so by managing a set of keys.  A  key  is  a
       collection  of  information  used  to authenticate a particular action.
       Stored as a list of attribute=value pairs, a key typically  contains  a
       user, an authentication domain, a protocol, and some secret data.

       Factotum  presents  a  two level directory.  The first level contains a
       single directory factotum, which in turn contains:

       rpc    each open represents a new private channel to factotum

       proto  when read lists the protocols available

              for confiming the use of key

              allows external programs to control the addition of new keys

       log    a log of actions

       ctl    for maintaining keys; when read, it returns a list of keys.  For
              secret  attributes,  only  the attribute name follow by a is re‐

       In any authentication, the caller typically acts as a  client  and  the
       callee  as  a server.  The server determines the authentication domain,
       sometimes after a negotiation with the client.   Authentication  always
       requires  the  client  to prove its identity to the server.  Under some
       protocols, the authentication is mutual.  Proof is  accomplished  using
       secret information kept by factotum in conjunction with a cryptographic

       Factotum can act in the role of client for any process  possessing  the
       same user id as it.  For select protocols such as p9sk1 it can also act
       as a client for other processes provided its user id may speak for  the
       other  process' user id (see authsrv(6)).  Factotum can act in the role
       of server for any process.

       Factotum's structure is independent of  any  particular  authentication
       protocol.  Factotum supports the following protocols:

       p9any  a metaprotocol used to negotiate which actual protocol to use.

       p9sk1  a  Plan  9  shared key protocol described in authsrv(6)'s ``File
              Service'' section.

       p9sk2  a variant of p9sk1 described  in  authsrv(6)'s  ``Remote  Execu‐
              tion'' section.

       p9cr   a Plan 9 protocol that can use either p9sk1 keys or SecureID to‐

       apop   the challenge/response protocol used by POP3 mail servers.

       cram   the challenge/response protocol also used by POP3 mail servers.

       chap   the challenge/response protocols used by PPP and PPTP.

       mschap a proprietary Microsoft protocol also used by PPP and PPTP.

       rsa    RSA public key decryption, used by SSH and TLS.

       pass   passwords in the clear.

       vnc    vnc(1)'s challenge/response.

       wep    WEP passwords for wireless ethernet cards.

       The options are:

       -a     supplies the address of the authentication server to use.  With‐
              out  this  option,  it  will  attempt  to find an authentication
              server by querying the connection server, the  file  <mtpt>/ndb,
              and finally the network database in /lib/ndb.

       -m     specifies the mount point to use, by default /mnt.

       -s     specifies  the service name to use.  Without this option, facto‐
              tum does not create a service file in /srv.

       -D     turns on 9P tracing, written to standard error.

       -d     turns on debugging, written to standard error.

       -g     causes the agent to prompt for the key,  write  it  to  the  ctl
              file, and exit.  The agent will prompt for values for any of the
              attributes ending with a question mark (?)  and will append  all
              the  supplied  attribute  = value pairs.  See the section on key
              templates below.

       -n     don't look for a secstore.

       -S     indicates that the agent is running on a CPU server.  On  start‐
              ing,  it  will attempt to get a p9sk1 key from NVRAM using read‐
              nvram (see authsrv(2)), prompting for  anything  it  needs.   It
              will  never  subsequently prompt for a key that it doesn't have.
              This option is typically used by the kernel at boot time.

       -k     causes the NVRAM to be written.  It is only valid  with  the  -S
              option.   This  option  is  typically used by the kernel at boot

       -u     causes the agent  to  prompt  for  user  id  and  writes  it  to
              /dev/hostowner.   It is mutually exclusive with -k and -S.  This
              option is typically used by the kernel at boot time.

       -p     causes the agent not to mark itself `private'  via  proc(3),  so
              that it can be debugged.  It is implied by -d.

       Fgui  is a graphic user interface for confirming key usage and entering
       new keys.  It hides the window in which it starts and waits reading re‐
       quests  from confirm and needkey.  For each requests, it unhides itself
       and waits for user input.  See the sections on key confirmation and key
       prompting below.

   Key Tuples
       A key tuple is a space delimited list of attribute=value pairs.  An at‐
       tribute whose name begins with an exclamation point (!)  does  not  ap‐
       pear  when reading the ctl file.  The required attributes depend on the
       authentication protocol.

       P9sk1, p9sk2, and p9cr all require a key with proto=p9sk1, a dom attri‐
       bute  identifying  the authentication domain, a user name valid in that
       domain, and either a !password or !hex attribute specifying  the  pass‐
       word or hexadecimal secret to be used.  Here is an example:

           proto=p9sk1 user=presotto !password=lucent

       Apop,  cram,  chap,  and  mschap,  require a key with a proto attribute
       whose value matches the protocol, in  addition  to  server,  user,  and
       !password attributes; e.g.

           proto=apop user=rsc !password=nerdsRus
       Vnc is similar but does not require a user attribute.

       Pass  requires  a key with proto=pass in addition to user and !password
       attributes; e.g.

           proto=pass user=tb !

       Rsa requires a key with proto=rsa in addition to all the hex attributes
       defining an RSA key: ek, n, !p, !q, !kp, !kq, !c2, and !dk.  By conven‐
       tion, programs using the RSA protocol also require a service  attribute
       set to ssh, sshserve, or tls.

       Wep  requires  a  key1,  key2,  or key3 set to the password to be used.
       Starting the protocol causes factotum to configure the wireless  ether‐
       net card #l/ether0 for WEP encryption with the given password.

       All  keys can have additional attributes that act either as comments or
       as selectors to distinguish them in the auth(2) library calls.

       The factotum owner can use any key stored by  factotum.   Any  key  may
       have one or more owner attributes listing the users who can use the key
       as though they were the owner.  For example, the TLS and SSH host  keys
       on  a  server often have an attribute owner=* to allow any user (and in
       particular, to run the TLS or SSH server-side protocol.

       Any key may have a role attribute for restricting how it can  be  used.
       If  this  attribute  is  missing, the key can be used in any role.  The
       possible values are:

       client for authenticating outbound calls

       server for authenticating inbound calls

              for authenticating processes whose user id does not match facto‐

       If a key has a disabled attribute (with any value), the key is not used
       during any protocols.  Factotum  automatically  marks  keys  with  dis‐
       abled=by.factotum  when  they fail during certain authentication proto‐
       cols (in particular, the Plan 9 ones).

       Whenever factotum runs as a server, it must have a p9sk1 key  in  order
       to  communicate with the authentication server for validating passwords
       and challenge/responses of other users.

   Key Templates
       Key templates are used by routines that interface to factotum  such  as
       auth_proxy  and  auth_challenge  (see auth(2)) to specify which key and
       protocol to use for an authentication.  Like a key tuple,  a  key  tem‐
       plate  is  also  a  list  of attribute=value pairs.  It must specify at
       least the protocol and enough other attributes to uniquely  identify  a
       key,  or set of keys, to use.  The keys chosen are those that match all
       the attributes specified in the template.  The possible attribute/value
       formats are:

       attr=val  The  attribute  attr must exist in the key and its value must
                 exactly match val

       attr?     The attribute attr must  exist  in  the  key  but  its  value
                 doesn't matter.

       attr      The attribute attr must exist in the key with a null value

       Key  templates are also used by factotum to request a key either via an
       RPC error or via the needkey interface.  The  possible  attribute/value
       formats are:

       attr=val  This pair must remain unchanged

       attr?     This attribute needs a value

       attr      The pair must remain unchanged

   Control and Key Management
       A  number of messages can be written to the control file.  The messages

       key attribute-value-list
              add a new key.  This will replace any old key whose public, i.e.
              non ! attributes, match.

       delkey attribute-value-list
              delete a key whose attributes match those given.

       debug  toggle  debugging on and off, i.e., the debugging also turned on
              by the -d option.

       By default when factotum starts it looks for a secstore(1)  account  on
       $auth  for the user and, if one exists, prompts for a secstore password
       in order to fetch the file factotum, which should contain control  file
       commands.  An example would be
         key proto=p9sk1 user=boyd !hex=26E522ADE2BBB2A229
         key proto=rsa service=ssh size=1024 ek=3B !dk=...
       where the first line sets a password for challenge/response authentica‐
       tion, strong against dictionary attack by being a long  random  string,
       and  the  second line sets a public/private keypair for ssh authentica‐
       tion, generated by ssh_genkey (see ssh(1)).

   Confirming key use
       The confirm file provides a connection from factotum to a  confirmation
       server,  normally  the program auth/fgui.  Whenever a key with the con‐
       firm attribute is used, factotum requires confirmation of its use.   If
       no process has confirm opened, use of the key will be denied.  However,
       if the file is opened a request can be read from it with the  following

       confirm tag=tagno <key template>

       The reply, written back to confirm, consists of string:

       tag=tagno answer=xxx

       If  xxx is the string yes then the use is confirmed and the authentica‐
       tion will proceed.  Otherwise, it fails.

       Confirm is exclusive open and can only be opened by a process with  the
       same user id as factotum.

   Prompting for keys
       The  needkey  file provides a connection from factotum to a key server,
       normally the program auth/fgui.  Whenever factotum needs a new key,  it
       first  checks  to  see if needkey is opened.  If it isn't, it returns a
       error to its client.  If the file is opened a request can be read  from
       it with the following format:

       needkey tag=tagno <key template>

       It  is  up to the reader to then query the user for any missing fields,
       write the key tuple into the ctl file, and then reply by  writing  into
       the needkey file the string:


       Needkey  is exclusive open and can only be opened by a process with the
       same user id as factotum.

   The RPC Protocol
       Authentication is performed by

       1)     opening rpc

       2)     setting up the protocol and key to be used (see  the  start  RPC

       3)     shuttling messages back and forth between factotum and the other
              party (see the read and write RPC's) until done

       4)     if successful, reading back an  AuthInfo  structure  (see  auth‐

       The  RPC  protocol  is  normally  embodied  by  one  of the routines in
       auth(2).  We describe it here should anyone want to extend the library.

       An RPC consists of writing a request message to rpc followed by reading
       a reply message back.  RPC's are strictly ordered; requests and replies
       of different RPC's cannot be interleaved.  Messages consist of a  verb,
       a  single  space,  and data.  The data format depends on the verb.  The
       request verbs are:

       start attribute-value-list
              start a new authentication.  Attribute-value-pair-list must  in‐
              clude  a  proto attribute, a role attribute with value client or
              server, and enough other attributes to uniquely identify  a  key
              to  use.  A start RPC is required before any others.    The pos‐
              sible replies are:

              ok     start succeeded.

              error string
                     where string is the reason.

       read   get data from factotum to send to the other party.  The possible
              replies are:

              ok     read succeeded, this is zero length message.

              ok data
                     read  succeeded, the data follows the space and is unfor‐

              done   authentication has succeeded, no further RPC's are neces‐

              done haveai
                     authentication  has succeeded, an AuthInfo structure (see
                     auth(2)) can be retrieved with an authinfo RPC

              phase string
                     its not your turn to read, get some data from  the  other
                     party and return it with a write RPC.

              error string
                     authentication failed, string is the reason.

              protocol not started
                     a start RPC needs to precede reads and writes

              needkey attribute-value-list
                     a key matching the argument is needed.  This argument may
                     be passed as an argument  to  factotum  -g  in  order  to
                     prompt  for  a  key.   After that, the authentication may
                     proceed, i.e., the read restarted.

       write data
              send data from  the  other  party  to  factotum.   The  possible
              replies are:

              ok     the write succeeded

              needkey attribute-value-list
                     see above

              toosmall n
                     the  write  is  too  short,  get more data from the other
                     party and retry the write.  n specifies the maximun total
                     number of bytes.

              phase string
                     its  not  your turn to write, get some data from factotum

              done   see above

              done haveai
                     see above

              retrieve the AuthInfo structure.  The possible replies are:

              ok data
                     data is a marshaled form of the AuthInfo structure.

              error string
                     where string is the reason for the error.

       attr   retrieve the attributes used in the  start  RPC.   The  possible
              replies are:

              ok attribute-value-list

              error string
                     where string is the reason for the error.