[Python-ideas] PEP 504: Using the system RNG by default

Brett Cannon brett at python.org
Wed Sep 16 18:53:38 CEST 2015

On Wed, 16 Sep 2015 at 09:10 Tim Peters <tim.peters at gmail.com> wrote:

> [Guido]
> >> ...
> >> Tim's proposal is simple: create a new module, e.g. safefandom, with the
> >> same API as random (less seed/state). That's it. Then it's a simple
> import
> >> change away to do the right thing, and we have years to seed
> StackOverflow
> >> with better information before that code even hits the road. (But a
> backport
> >> to Python 2.7 could be on PyPI tomorrow!)
> [Nick Coghlan <ncoghlan at gmail.com>]
> > If folks are reaching for a third party library anyway, we'd be better
> > off point them at one of the higher levels ones like passlib or
> > cryptography.
> Note that, in context, "saferandom" _would_ be a standard module in a
> future Python 3 feature release.  But it _could_ be used literally
> tomorrow by anyone who wanted a head start, whether in a current
> Python 2 or Python 3.

+1 on the overall idea, although I would rather the module be named
random.safe in the stdlib ("namespaces are one honking great idea" and it
helps keep the "safer" version of random near the "unsafe" version in the
module index which makes discovery easier). And as long as the version on
PyPI stays Python 2/3 compatible people can just rely on the saferandom
name until they drop Python 2 support and then just update their imports.

> And if pieces of `passlib` and/or `cryptography` are thought to be
> essential for best practice, cool, then `saferandom` could also become
> a natural home for workalikes.  Would you really want to _ever_ put
> such functions in the catch-all "random" module?  The docs would
> become an incomprehensible mess.

So, a PEP for this to propose which random algorithm to use (I have at
least heard chacha/ch4random and some AES thing bandied about as being
fast)? And if yes to a PEP, who's writing it? And then who is writing the
implementation in the end?
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