[Python-ideas] Pre-PEP Adding A Secrets Module To The Standard Library

Brett Cannon brett at python.org
Tue Sep 22 18:01:51 CEST 2015

On Tue, 22 Sep 2015 at 04:56 Nick Coghlan <ncoghlan at gmail.com> wrote:

> On 22 September 2015 at 09:56, Stephen J. Turnbull <stephen at xemacs.org>
> wrote:
> > Steven D'Aprano writes:
> >
> >  > I wouldn't include punctuation [in the password alphabet] by
> >  > default, as too many places still prohibit some, or all,
> >  > punctuation characters.
> >
> > Do you really expect users to choose their own random passwords using
> > this function?  I would expect that this function would be used for
> > initial system-generated passwords (or system-enforced random
> > passwords), and the system would have control over the admissible set.
> > But users who have to conform to somebody else's rules much prefer
> > obfuscated passwords that pass strength tests to random passwords in
> > my experience.
> Right, the primary use case here is "web developer creating a default
> password for an automatically created admin account" (for example),
> not "end user creating a password for an arbitrary service".
> We don't want to overgeneralise the canned recipes - keep them dirt
> simple, and if folks want something slightly different, we can go the
> itertools path and have recipes in the documentation.

Out of this whole proposal, this password function is the one I'm most
worried about. As someone who has a project whose entire job is to generate
consistent passwords, I can tell you it's a messy business that will just
lead to never-ending complaints about "why didn't you include this as part
of password alphabet" or "why did you choose that length". It just isn't
worth the hassle when it isn't going to impact a majority of Python users.
This can be something that web frameworks and other folks worry about.
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