PRNG design document?

Anton Stiglic astiglic at
Wed Aug 27 09:46:29 EDT 2003

----- Original Message ----- 
From: "Bob Baldwin PlusFive" <baldwin at>
To: "Tim Dierks" <tim at>
Cc: <cryptography at>
Sent: Friday, August 22, 2003 1:00 PM
Subject: Re: PRNG design document?

> Tim,
>      One issue to consider is whether the system
> that includes the PRNG will ever need a FIPS-140-2
> rating.  
> [...]

As you mentioned, the FIPS-140-2 approved PRNG 
are deterministic, they take a random seed and extend it
to more random bytes.  But FIPS-140-2 has no 
provision for generating the seed in the first place, 
this is where something like Yarrow or the cryptlib
RNG come in handy.

So if you want FIPS-140-2 compliance, generate a 
seed using something based on Yarrow or cryptlib RNG
(or if you have a good hardware RNG use that to 
generate the seed), and then apply a FIPS approved
PRNG to the seed.

NIST should really approve something like Yarrow 
or Peter Gutmann's design...


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