Tag Archives: cURL and libcurl

commercial curl support!

If you want commercial support, ports of curl to other operating systems or just instant help to fix your curl related problems, we’re here to help. Get in touch now! This is the premiere. This has not been offered by me or anyone else before.

I’m not sure I need to say it, but I personally have authored almost 60% of all commits in the curl source code during my more than twenty years in the project. I started the project, I’ve designed its architecture etc. There is simply no one around with my curl experience and knowledge of curl internals. You can’t buy better curl expertise.

curl has become one of the world’s most widely used software components and is the transfer engine doing a large chunk of all non-browser Internet transfers in the world today. curl has reached this level of success entirely without anyone offering commercial services around it. Still, not every company and product made out there has a team of curl experts and in this demanding time and age we know there are times when you rather hire the right team to help you out.

We are the curl experts that can help you and your team. Contact us for all and any support questions at support@wolfssl.com.

What about the curl project?

I’m heading into this new chapter of my life and the curl project with the full knowledge that this blurs the lines between my job and my spare time even more than before. But fear not!

The curl project is free and open and will remain independent of any commercial enterprise helping out customers. I realize me offering companies and organizations to deal with curl problems and solving curl issues for compensation creates new challenges and questions where boundaries go, if for nothing else for me personally. I still think this is worth pursuing and I’m sure we can figure out and handle whatever minor issues this can lead to.

My friends, the community, the users and harsh critiques on twitter will all help me stay true and honest. I know this. This should end up a plus for the curl project in general as well as for me personally. More focus, more work and more money involved in curl related activities should improve the project.

It is with great joy and excitement I take on this new step.

curl 7.64.0 – like there’s no tomorrow

I know, has there been eight weeks since the previous release already? But yes it has – I double-checked! And then as the laws of nature dictates, there has been yet another fresh curl version released out into the wild.

Numbers

the 179th release
5 changes
56 days (total: 7,628)

76 bug fixes (total: 4,913)
128 commits (total: 23,927)
0 new public libcurl functions (total: 80)
3 new curl_easy_setopt() options (total: 265)

1 new curl command line option (total: 220)
56 contributors, 29 new (total: 1,904)
32 authors, 13 new (total: 658)
  3 security fixes (total: 87)

Security fixes

This release we have no less than three different security related fixes. I’ll describe them briefly here, but for the finer details I advice you to read the dedicated pages and documentation we’ve written for each one of them.

CVE-2018-16890 is a bug where the existing range check in the NTLM code is wrong, which allows a malicious or broken NTLM server to send a header to curl that will make it read outside a buffer and possibly crash or otherwise misbehave.

CVE-2019-3822 is related to the previous but with much worse potential effects. Another bad range check actually allows a sneaky NTLMv2 server to be able to send back crafted contents that can overflow a local stack based buffer. This is potentially in the worst case a remote code execution risk. I think this might be the worst security issue found in curl in a long time. A small comfort is that by disabling NTLM, you will avoid it until patched.

CVE-2019-3823 is a potential read out of bounds of a heap based buffer in the SMTP code. It is fairly hard to trigger and it will mostly cause a crash when it does.

Changes

  1. curl now supports Mike West’s cookie update known as draft-ietf-httpbis-cookie-alone. It basically means that cookies that are set as “secure” has to be set over HTTPS to be allow to override a previous secure cookie. Safer cookies.
  2. The –resolve option as well as CURLOPT_RESOLVE now support specifying a wildcard as port number.
  3. libcurl can now send trailing headers in chunked uploads using the new options.
  4. curl now offers options to enable HTTP/0.9 responses, The default is still enabled, but the plan is to deprecate that and in 6 months time switch over the to default to off.
  5. curl now uses higher resolution timer accuracy on windows.

Bug-fixes

Check out the full change log to see the whole list. Here are some of the bug fixes I consider to be most noteworthy:

  • We re-implemented the code coverage support for autotools builds due to a license problem. It turned out the previously used macro was GPLv2 licensed in an unusual way for autoconf macros.
  • We make sure –xattr never stores URLs with credentials, following the security problem reported on a related tool. Not considered a security problem since this is actually what the user asked for, but still done like this for added safety.
  • With -J, curl should not be allowed to append to the file. It could lead to curl appending to a file that was in the download directory since before.
  • –tls-max didn’t work correctly on macOS when built to use Secure Transport.
  • A couple of improvements in the libssh-powered SSH backend.
  • Adjusted the build for OpenSSL 3.0.0 (the coming future version).
  • We no longer refer to Schannel as “winssl” anywhere. winssl is dead. Long live Schannel!
  • When built with mbedTLS, ignore SIGPIPE accordingly!
  • Test cases were adjusted and verified to work fine up until February 2037.
  • We fixed several parsing errors in the URL parser, mostly related to IPv6 addresses. Regressions introduced in 7.62.0.

Next

The next release cycle will be one week shorter and we expect to ship next release on March 27 – just immediately after curl turns 22 years old. There are already several changes in the pipe so we expect that to become 7.65.0.

We love your help and support! File bugs you experience or see, submit pull requests for the features or corrections you work on!

I’m on team wolfSSL

Let me start by saying thank you to all and everyone who sent me job offers or otherwise reached out with suggestions and interesting career moves. I received more than twenty different offers and almost every one of those were truly good options that I could have said yes to and still pulled home a good job. What a luxury challenge to have to select something from that! Publicly announcing me leaving Mozilla turned out a great ego-boost.

I took some time off to really reflect and contemplate on what I wanted from my next career step. What would the right next move be?

I love working on open source. Internet protocols, and transfers and doing libraries written in C are things considered pure fun for me. Can I get all that and yet keep working from home, not sacrifice my wage and perhaps integrate working on curl better in my day to day job?

I talked to different companies. Very interesting companies too, where I have friends and people who like me and who really wanted to get me working for them, but in the end there was one offer with a setup that stood out. One offer for which basically all check marks in my wish-list were checked.

wolfSSL

On February 5, 2019 I’m starting my new job at wolfSSL. My short and sweet period as unemployed is over and now it’s full steam ahead again! (Some members of my family have expressed that they haven’t really noticed any difference between me having a job and me not having a job as I spend all work days the same way nevertheless: in front of my computer.)

Starting now, we offer commercial curl support and various services for and around curl that companies and organizations previously really haven’t been able to get. Time I do not spend on curl related activities for paying customers I will spend on other networking libraries in the wolfSSL “portfolio”. I’m sure I will be able to keep busy.

I’ve met Larry at wolfSSL physically many times over the years and every year at FOSDEM I’ve made certain to say hello to my wolfSSL friends in their booth they’ve had there for years. They’re truly old-time friends.

wolfSSL is mostly a US-based company – I’m the only Swede on the team and the only one based in Sweden. My new colleagues all of course know just as well as you that I’m prevented from traveling to the US. All coming physical meetings with my work mates will happen in other countries.

commercial curl support!

We offer all sorts of commercial support for curl. I’ll post separately with more details around this.

QUIC and missing APIs

I trust you’ve heard by now that HTTP/3 is coming. It is the next destined HTTP version, targeted to get published as an RFC in July 2019. Not very far off.

HTTP/3 will not be done over TCP. It will only be performed over QUIC, which is a transport protocol replacement for TCP that always is done encrypted. There’s no clear-text version of QUIC.

TLS 1.3

The encryption in QUIC is based on TLS 1.3 technologies which I believe everyone thinks is a good idea and generally the correct decision. We need to successively raise the bar as we move forward with protocols.

However, QUIC is not only a transport protocol that does encryption by itself while TLS is typically (and designed as) a protocol that is done on top of TCP, it was also designed by a team of engineers who came up with a design that requires APIs from the TLS layer that the traditional TLS over TCP use case doesn’t need!

New TLS APIs

A QUIC implementation needs to extract traffic secrets from the TLS connection and it needs to be able to read/write TLS messages directly – not using the TLS record layer. TLS records are what’s used when we send TLS over TCP. (This was discussed and decided back around the time for the QUIC interim in Kista.)

These operations need APIs that still are missing in for example the very popular OpenSSL library, but also in other commonly used ones like GnuTLS and libressl. And of course schannel and Secure Transport.

Libraries known to already have done the job and expose the necessary mechanisms include BoringSSL, NSS, quicly, PicoTLS and Minq. All of those are incidentally TLS libraries with a more limited number of application users and less mainstream. They’re also more or less developed by people who are also actively engaged in the QUIC protocol development.

The QUIC libraries in progress now are typically using either one of the TLS libraries that already are adapted or do what ngtcp2 does: it hosts a custom-patched version of OpenSSL that brings the needed functionality.

Matt Caswell of the OpenSSL development team acknowledged this situation already back in September 2017, but so far we haven’t seen this result in updated code shipped in a released version.

curl and QUIC

curl is TLS library agnostic and can get built with around 12 different TLS libraries – one or many actually, as you can build it to allow users to select TLS backend in run-time!

OpenSSL is without competition the most popular choice to build curl with outside of the proprietary operating systems like macOS and Windows 10. But even the vendor-build and provided mac and Windows versions are also built with libraries that lack APIs for this.

With our current keen interest in QUIC and HTTP/3 support for curl, we’re about to run into an interesting TLS situation. How exactly is someone going to build curl to simultaneously support both traditional TLS based protocols as well as QUIC going forward?

I don’t have a good answer to this yet. Right now (assuming we would have the code ready in our end, which we don’t), we can’t ship QUIC or HTTP/3 support enabled for curl built to use the most popular TLS libraries! Hopefully by the time we get our code in order, the situation has improved somewhat.

This will slow down QUIC deployment

I’m personally convinced that this little API problem will be friction enough when going forward that it will slow down and hinder QUIC deployment at least initially.

When the HTTP/2 spec shipped in May 2015, it introduced a dependency on the fairly new TLS extension called ALPN that for a long time caused head aches for server admins since ALPN wasn’t supported in the OpenSSL versions that was typically installed and used at the time, but you had to upgrade OpenSSL to version 1.0.2 to get that supported.

At that time, almost four years ago, OpenSSL 1.0.2 was already released and the problem was big enough to just upgrade to that. This time, the API we’re discussing here is not even in a beta version of OpenSSL and thus hasn’t been released in any version yet. That’s far worse than the HTTP/2 situation we had and that took a few years to ride out.

Will we get these APIs into an OpenSSL release to test before the QUIC specification is done? If the schedule sticks, there’s about six months left…

A curl 2018 retrospective

Another year reaches its calendar end and a new year awaits around the corner. In the curl project we’ve had another busy and event-full year. Here’s a look back at some of the fun we’ve done during 2018.

Releases

We started out the year with the 7.58.0 release in January, and we managed to squeeze in another six releases during the year. In total we count 658 documented bug-fixes and 31 changes. The total number of bug-fixes was actually slightly lower this year compared to last year’s 683. An average of 1.8 bug-fixes per day is still not too shabby.

Authors

I’m very happy to say that we again managed to break our previous record as 155 unique authors contributed code. 111 of them for the first time in the project, and 126 did fewer than three commits during the year. Basically this means we merged code from a brand new author every three days through-out the year!

The list of “contributors”, where we also include helpers, bug reporters, security researchers etc, increased with another 169 new names this year to a total of 1829 in the last release of the year. That’s 169 new names. Of course we also got a lot of help from people who were already mentioned in there!

Will we be able to reach 2000 names before the end of 2019?

Commits

At the time of this writing, almost two weeks before the end of the year, we’re still behind the last few years with 1051 commits done this year. 1381 commits were done in 2017.

Daniel’s commit share

I personally authored 535 (50.9%) of all commits during 2018. Marcel Raad did 65 and Daniel Gustafsson 61. In general I maintain my general share of the changes done in the project over time. Possibly I’ve even increased it slightly the last few years. This graph shows my share of the commits layered on top of the number of commits done.

Vulnerabilities

This year we got exactly the same amount of security problems reported as we did last year: 12. Some of the problems were one-off due curl being added to the OSS-Fuzz project in 2018 and it has taken a while to really hit some of our soft spots and as we’ve seen a slow-down in reports from there it’ll be interesting to see if 2019 will be a brighter year in this department. (In total, OSS-Fuzz is credited for having found six security vulnerabilities in curl to date.)

During the year we manage to both introduce new bug bounty program as well as retract that very same again when it shut down almost at once! 🙁

Lines of code

Counting all lines in the git repo in the src, lib and include directories, they grew nearly 6,000 lines (3.7%) during the year to 155,912. The primary code growing activities this year were:

  1. DNS-over-HTTPS support
  2. The new URL API and using that internally as well

Deprecating legacy

In July we created the DEPRECATE.md document to keep order of some things we’re stowing away in the cyberspace attic. During the year we cut off axTLS support as a first example of this deprecation procedure. HTTP pipelining, global DNS cache and HTTP/0.9 accepted by default are features next in line marked for removal, and the two first are already disabled in code.

curl up

We had our second curl conference this year; in Stockholm. It was blast again and I’m already looking forward to curl up 2019 in Prague.

Sponsor updates

Yours truly quit Mozilla and with that we lost them as a sponsor of the curl project. We have however gotten several new backers and sponsors over the year since we joined opencollective, and can receive donations from there.

Governance

Together with a bunch of core team members I put together a two-step proposal that I posted back in October:

  1. we join an umbrella organization
  2. we create a “board” to decide over money

As the first step turned out to be a very slow operation (ie we’ve applied, but the process has not gone very far yet) we haven’t yet made step 2 happen either.

2019

Things that didn’t happen in 2018 but very well might happen in 2019 include:

  1. Some first HTTP/3 and QUIC code attempts in curl
  2. HSTS support? A pull request for this has been lingering for a while already.

Note: the numbers for 2018 in this post were extracted and graphs were prepared a few weeks before the actual end of year, so some of the data quite possibly changed a little bit since.

Why is curl different everywhere?

At a talk I did a while ago, someone from the back of the audience raised this question. I found it to be such a great question that I decided to spend a few minutes and explain how this happens and why.

In this blog post I’ll stick to discussing the curl command line tool. “curl” is often also used as a shortcut for the library but let’s focus on the tool here.

When you use a particular curl version installed in a system near you, chances are that it differs slightly from the curl your neighbor runs or even the one that you use in the machines at work.

Why is this?

Versions

We release a new curl version every eight weeks. On average we ship over thirty releases in a five-year period.

A lot of people use curl versions that are a few years old, some even many years old. There are easily more than 30 different curl version in active use at any given moment.

Not every curl release introduce changes and new features, but it is very common and all releases are at least always corrected a lot of bugs from previous versions. New features and fixed bugs make curl different between releases.

Linux/OS distributions tend to also patch their curl versions at times, and then they all of course have different criteria and work flows, so the exact same curl version built and shipped from two different vendors can still differ!

Platforms

curl builds on almost every platform you can imagine. When you build curl for your platform, it is designed to use features, native APIs and functions available and they will indeed differ between systems.

curl also relies on a number of different third party libraries. The set of libraries a particular curl build is set to use varies by platform, but even more so due to the decisions of the persons or group that built this particular curl executable. The exact set, and the exact versions of each of those third party libraries, will change curl’s feature set, from subtle and small changes up to large really noticeable differences.

TLS libraries

As a special third party library, I want to especially highlight the importance of the TLS library that curl is built to use. It will change not only what SSL and TLS versions curl supports, but also how to handle CA certificates, it provides crypto support for authentication schemes such as NTLM and more. Not to mention that of course TLS libraries also develop over time so if curl is built to use an older release, it probably has less support for later features and protocol versions.

Feature shaving

When building curl, you can switch features on and off to a very large extent, making it possible to quite literally build it in several million different combinations. The organizations, people and companies that build curl to ship with their operating systems or their package distribution systems decide what feature set they want or don’t want for their users. One builder’s decision and thought process certainly does not have to match the ones of the others’. With the same curl version, the same TLS library on the same operating system two curl builds might thus still end up different!

Build your own!

If you aren’t satisfied with the version or feature-set of your own locally installed curl – build your own!

7.63.0 – another step down the endless path

This curl release was developed and put together over a period of six weeks (two weeks less than usual). This was done to accommodate to my personal traveling plans – and to avoid doing a release too close to Christmas in case we would ship any security fixes, but ironically, we have no security advisories this time!

Numbers

the 178th release
3 changes
42 days (total: 7,572)

79 bug fixes (total: 4,837)
122 commits (total: 23,799)
0 new public libcurl functions (total: 80)
1 new curl_easy_setopt() options (total: 262)

0 new curl command line option (total: 219)
51 contributors, 21 new (total: 1,829)
31 authors, 14 new (total: 646)
  0 security fixes (total: 84)

Changes

With the new CURLOPT_CURLU option, an application can now  pass in an already parsed URL to libcurl instead of a string.

When using libcurl’s URL API, introduced in 7.62.0, the result is held in a “handle” and that handle is what now can be passed straight into libcurl when setting up a transfer.

In the command line tool, the –write-out option got the ability to optionally redirect its output to stderr. Previously it was always a given file or stdout but many people found that a bit limiting.

Interesting bug-fixes

Weirdly enough we found and fixed a few cookie related bugs this time. I say “weirdly” because you’d think this is functionality that’s been around for a long time and should’ve been battle tested and hardened quite a lot already. As usual, I’m only covering some bugs here. The full list is in the changelog!

Cookie saving –  One cookie bug that we fixed was related to libcurl not saving a cookie jar when no cookies are kept in memory (any more). This turned out to be a changed behavior due to us doing more aggressive expiry of old cookies since a while back, and one user had a use case where they would load cookies from a cookie jar and then expect that the cookies would update and write to the jar again, overwriting the old one – although when no cookies were left internally it didn’t touch the file and the application thus reread the old cookies again on the next invoke. Since this was subtly changed behavior, libcurl will now save an empty jar in this situation to make sure such apps will note the blank jar.

Cookie expiry – For the received cookies that get ‘Max-Age=0’ set, curl would treat the zero value the same way as any number and therefore have the cookie continue to exist during the whole second it arrived (time() + 0 basically). The cookie RFC is actually rather clear that receiving a zero for this parameter is a special case and means that it should rather expire it immediately and now curl does.

Timeout handling – when calling curl_easy_perform() to do a transfer, and you ask libcurl to timeout that transfer after say 5.1 seconds, the transfer hasn’t completed in that time and the connection is in fact totally idle at that time, a recent regression would make libcurl not figure this out until a full 6 seconds had elapsed.

NSS – we fixed several minor  issues in the NSS back-end this time. Perhaps the most important issue was if the installed NSS library has been built with TLS 1.3 disabled while curl was built knowing about TLS 1.3, as then things like the ‘–tlsv1.2’ option would still cause errors. Now curl will fall back correctly. Fixes were also made to make sure curl again works with NSS versions back to 3.14.

OpenSSL – with TLS 1.3 session resumption was changed for TLS, but now curl will support it with OpenSSL.

snprintf – curl has always had its own implementation of the *printf() family of functions for portability reasons. First, traditionally snprintf() was not universally available but then also different implementations have different support for things like 64 bit integers or size_t fields and they would disagree on return values. Since curl’s snprintf() implementation doesn’t use the same return code as POSIX or other common implementations we decided we shouldn’t use the same name so that we don’t fool readers of code into believing that they are fully compatible. For that reason, we now also “ban” the use of snprintf() in the curl code.

URL parsing – there were several regressions from the URL parsing news introduced in curl 7.62.0. That os the first release that offers the new URL API for applications, and we also then switched the internals to use that new code. Perhaps the funniest error was how a short name plus port number (hello:80) was accidentally treated as a “scheme” by the parser and since the scheme was unknown the URL was rejected. The numerical IPv6 address parser was also badly broken – I take the blame for not writing good enough test cases for it which made me not realize this in time. Two related regressions that came from the URL  work broke HTTP Digest auth and some LDAP transfers.

DoH over HTTP/1 – DNS-over-HTTPS was simply not enabled in the build if HTTP/2 support wasn’t there, which was an unnecessary restriction and now h2-disabled builds will also be able to resolve host names using DoH.

Trailing dots in host name – an old favorite subject came back to haunt us and starting in this version, curl will keep any trailing dot in the host name when it resolves the name, and strip it off for all the rest of the uses where the name will be passed in: for cookies, for the HTTP Host: header and for the TLS SNI field. This, since most resolver APIs makes a difference between resolving “host” compared to “host.” and we wouldn’t previously acknowledge or support the two versions.

HTTP/2 – When we enabled HTTP/2 by default for more transfers in 7.62.0, we of course knew that could force more latent bugs to float up to the surface and get noticed. We made curl understand  HTTP_1_1_REQUIRED error when received over HTTP/2 and then retry over HTTP/1.1. and if NTLM is selected as the authentication to use curl now forces HTTP/1 use.

Next release

We have suggested new features already lined up waiting to get merged so the next version is likely to be called 7.64.0 and it is scheduled to happen on February 6th 2019.

I’m leaving Mozilla

It’s been five great years, but now it is time for me to move on and try something else.

During these five years I’ve met and interacted with a large number of awesome people at Mozilla, lots of new friends! I got the chance to work from home and yet work with a global team on a widely used product, all done with open source. I have worked on internet protocols during work-hours (in addition to my regular spare-time working with them) and its been great! Heck, lots of the HTTP/2 development and the publication of that was made while I was employed by Mozilla and I fondly participated in that. I shall forever have this time ingrained in my memory as a very good period of my life.

I had already before I joined the Firefox development understood some of the challenges of making a browser in the modern era, but that understanding has now been properly enriched with lots of hands-on and code-digging in sometimes decades-old messy C++, a spaghetti armada of threads and the wild wild west of users on the Internet.

A very big thank you and a warm bye bye go to everyone of my friends at Mozilla. I won’t be far off and I’m sure I will have reasons to see many of you again.

My last day as officially employed by Mozilla is December 11 2018, but I plan to spend some of my remaining saved up vacation days before then so I’ll hand over most of my responsibilities way before.

The future is bright but unknown!

I don’t yet know what to do next.

I have some ideas and communications with friends and companies, but nothing is firmly decided yet. I will certainly entertain you with a totally separate post on this blog once I have that figured out! Don’t worry.

Will it affect curl or other open source I do?

I had worked on curl for a very long time already before joining Mozilla and I expect to keep doing curl and other open source things even going forward. I don’t think my choice of future employer should have to affect that negatively too much, except of course in periods.

With me leaving Mozilla, we’re also losing Mozilla as a primary sponsor of the curl project, since that was made up of them allowing me to spend some of my work days on curl and that’s now over.

Short-term at least, this move might increase my curl activities since I don’t have any new job yet and I need to fill my days with something…

What about toying with HTTP?

I was involved in the IETF HTTPbis working group for many years before I joined Mozilla (for over ten years now!) and I hope to be involved for many years still. I still have a lot of things I want to do with curl and to keep curl the champion of its class I need to stay on top of the game.

I will continue to follow and work with HTTP and other internet protocols very closely. After all curl remains the world’s most widely used HTTP client.

Can I enter the US now?

No. That’s unfortunately not related, and I’m not leaving Mozilla because of this problem and I unfortunately don’t expect my visa situation to change because of this change. My visa counter is now showing more than 214 days since I applied.

Get the CA cert for curl

When you use curl to communicate with a HTTPS site (or any other protocol that uses TLS), it will by default verify that the server is signed by a trusted Certificate Authority (CA). It does this by checking the CA bundle it was built to use, or instructed to use with the –cacert command line option.

Sometimes you end up in a situation where you don’t have the necessary CA cert in your bundle. It could then look something like this:

$ curl https://example.com/
curl: (60) SSL certificate problem: self signed certificate
More details here: https://curl.haxx.se/docs/sslcerts.html

Do not disable!

A first gut reaction could be to disable the certificate check. Don’t do that. You’ll just make that end up in production or get copied by someone else and then you’ll spread the insecure use to other places and eventually cause a security problem.

Get the CA cert

I’ll show you four different ways to fix this.

1. Update your OS CA store

Operating systems come with a CA bundle of their own and on most of them, curl is setup to use the system CA store. A system update often makes curl work again.

This of course doesn’t help you if you have a self-signed certificate or otherwise use a CA that your operating system doesn’t have in its trust store.

2. Get an updated CA bundle from us

curl can be told to use a separate stand-alone file as CA store, and conveniently enough curl provides an updated one on the curl web site. That one is automatically converted from the one Mozilla provides for Firefox, updated daily. It also provides a little backlog so the ten most recent CA stores are available.

If you agree to trust the same CAs that Firefox trusts. This is a good choice.

3. Get it with openssl

Now we’re approaching the less good options. It’s way better to get the CA certificates via other means than from the actual site you’re trying to connect to!

This method uses the openssl command line tool. The servername option used below is there to set the SNI field, which often is necessary to tell the server which actual site’s certificate you want.

$ echo quit | openssl s_client -showcerts -servername server -connect server:443 > cacert.pem

A real world example, getting the certs for daniel.haxx.se and then getting the main page with curl using them:

$ echo quit | openssl s_client -showcerts -servername daniel.haxx.se -connect daniel.haxx.se:443 > cacert.pem

$ curl --cacert cacert.pem https://daniel.haxx.se
4. Get it with Firefox

Suppose you’re browsing the site already fine with Firefox. Then you can do inspect it using the browser and export to use with curl.

Step 1 – click the i in the circle on the left of the URL in the address bar of your browser.

Step 2 – click the right arrow on the right side in the drop-down window that appeared.

Step 3 – new contents appeared, now click the “More Information” at the bottom, which pops up a new separate window…

Step 4 – Here you get security information from Firefox about the site you’re visiting. Click the “View Certificate” button on the right. It pops up yet another separate window.

Step 5 – in this window full of certificate information, select the “Details” tab…

Step 6 – when switched to the details tab, there’s the certificate hierarchy shown at the top and we select the top choice there. This list will of course look different for different sites

Step 7 – now click the “Export” tab at the bottom left and save the file (that uses a .crt extension) somewhere suitable.

If you for example saved the exported certificate using in /tmp, you could then use curl with that saved certificate something like this:

$ curl --cacert /tmp/GlobalSignRootCA-R3.crt https://curl.haxx.se

But I’m not using openssl!

This description assumes you’re using a curl that uses a CA bundle in the PEM format, which not all do – in particular not the ones built with NSS, Schannel (native Windows) or Secure Transport (native macOS and iOS) don’t.

If you use one of those, you need to then add additional command to import the PEM formatted cert into the particular CA store of yours.

A CA store is many PEM files concatenated

Just concatenate many different PEM files into a single file to create a CA store with multiple certificates.

curl 7.62.0 MOAR STUFF

This is a feature-packed release with more new stuff than usual.

Numbers

the 177th release
10 changes
56 days (total: 7,419)

118 bug fixes (total: 4,758)
238 commits (total: 23,677)
5 new public libcurl functions (total: 80)
2 new curl_easy_setopt() options (total: 261)

1 new curl command line option (total: 219)
49 contributors, 21 new (total: 1,808)
38 authors, 19 new (total: 632)
  3 security fixes (total: 84)

Security

New since the previous release is the dedicated curl bug bounty program. I’m not sure if this program has caused any increase in reports as it feels like a little too early to tell.

CVE-2018-16839 – an integer overflow case that triggers on 32 bit machines given extremely long input user name argument, when using POP3, SMTP or IMAP.

CVE-2018-16840 – a use-after-free issue. Immediately after having freed a struct in the easy handle close function, libcurl might write a boolean to that struct!

CVE-2018-16842 – is a vulnerability in the curl command line tool’s “warning” message display code which can make it read outside of a buffer and send unintended memory contents to stderr.

All three of these issues are deemed to have low severity and to be hard to exploit.

New APIs!

We introduce a brand new URL API, that lets applications parse and generate URLs, using libcurl’s own parser. Five new public functions in one go there! The link goes to the separate blog entry that explained it.

A brand new function is introduced (curl_easy_upkeep) to let applications maintain idle connections while no transfers are in progress! Perfect to maintain HTTP/2 connections for example that have a PING frame that might need attention.

More changes

Applications using libcurl’s multi interface will now get multiplexing enabled by default, and HTTP/2 will be selected for HTTPS connections. With these new changes of the default behavior, we hope that lots of applications out there just transparently and magically will start to perform better over time without anyone having to change anything!

We shipped DNS-over-HTTPS support. With DoH, your internet client can do secure and private name resolves easier. Follow the link for the full blog entry with details.

The good people at MesaLink has a TLS library written in rust, and in this release you can build libcurl to use that library. We haven’t had a new TLS backend supported since 2012!

Our default IMAP handling is slightly changed, to use the proper standards compliant “UID FETCH” method instead of just “FETCH”. This might introduce some changes in behavior so if you’re doing IMAP transfers, I advice you to mind your step into this upgrade.

Starting in 7.62.0, applications can now set the buffer size libcurl will use for uploads. The buffers used for download and upload are separate and applications have been able to specify the download buffer size for a long time already and now they can finally do it for uploads too. Most applications won’t need to bother about it, but for some edge case uses there are performance gains to be had by bumping this size up. For example when doing SFTP uploads over high latency high bandwidth connections.

curl builds that use libressl will now at last show the correct libressl version number in the “curl -V” output.

Deprecating legacy

CURLOPT_DNS_USE_GLOBAL_CACHE is deprecated! If there’s not a massive complaint uproar, this means this option will effectively be made pointless in April 2019. The global cache isn’t thread-safe and has been called obsolete in the docs since 2002!

HTTP pipelining support is deprecated! Starting in this version, asking for pipelining will be ignored by libcurl. We strongly urge users to switch to and use HTTP/2, which in 99% of the cases is the better alternative to HTTP/1.1 Pipelining. The pipelining code in libcurl has stability problems. The impact of disabled pipelining should be minimal but some applications will of course notice. Also note the section about HTTP/2 and multiplexing by default under “changes” above.

To get an overview of all things marked for deprecation in curl and their individual status check out this page.

Interesting bug-fixes

TLS 1.3 support for GnuTLS landed. Now you can build curl to support TLS 1.3 with most of the TLS libraries curl supports: GnuTLS, OpenSSL, BoringSSL, libressl, Secure Transport, WolfSSL, NSS and MesaLink.

curl got Windows VT Support and UTF-8 output enabled, which should make fancy things like “curl wttr.in” to render nice outputs out of the box on Windows as well!

The TLS backends got a little cleanup and error code use unification so that they should now all return the same error code for the same problem no matter which backend you use!

When you use curl to do URL “globbing” as for example “curl http://localhost/[1-22]” to fetch a range or a series of resources and accidentally mess up the range, curl would previously just say that it detected an error in the glob pattern. Starting now, it will also try to show exactly where in which pattern it found the error that made it stop processing it.

CI

The curl for Windows CI builds on AppVeyor are now finally also running the test suite! Actually making sure that the Windows build is intact in every commit and PR is a huge step forward for us and our aim to keep curl functional. We also build several additional and different build combinations on Windows in the CI than we did previously. All in an effort to reduce regressions.

We’ve added four new checks to travis (that run on every pull-request and commit):

  1. The “tidy” build runs clang-tidy on all sources in src/ and lib/.
  2. a –disable-verbose build makes sure this configure option still builds curl warning-free
  3. the “distcheck” build now scans all files for accidental unicode BOM markers
  4. a MesaLink-using build verifies this configuration

CI build times

We’re right now doing 40 builds on every commit, spending around 12 hours of CPU time for a full round. With >230 landed commits in the tree that originated from 150-something pull requests,  with a lot of them having been worked out using multiple commits, we’ve done perhaps 500 full round CI builds in these 56 days.

This of course doesn’t include all the CPU time developers spend locally before submitting PRs or even the autobuild system that currently runs somewhere in the order of 50 builds per day. If we assume an average time spent for each build+test to take 20 minutes, this adds another 930 hours of CI hours done from the time of the previous release until this release.

To sum up, that’s about 7,000 hours of CI spent in 56 days, equaling about 520% non-stop CPU time!

We are grateful for all the help we get!

Next release

The next release will ship on December 12, 2018 unless something urgent happens before that.

Note that this date breaks the regular eight week release cycle and is only six weeks off. We do this since the originally planned date would happen in the middle of Christmas when “someone” plans to be off traveling…

The next release will probably become 7.63.0 since we already have new changes knocking on the door waiting to get merged that will warrant another minor number bump. Stay tuned for details!