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Configuring Checksums

What checksum algorithems are available on any given Pulp instance, is controlled by the pulpcore ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting. If enabled, pulp_deb will make use of MD5, SHA-1, SHA-256, and SHA-512. SHA-256 is required and cannot be disabled.


For compliance reasons, MD5 and SHA-1 have been disabled by default since pulpcore 3.11.


It is almost universal practice within the Debian ecosystem to make use of MD5 in particular. If your Pulp instance is configured to disallow the MD5 checksum algorithm, pulp_deb will log a warning with every sync as well as every use of the APT publisher. You can disable these warnings, by changing the FORBIDDEN_CHECKSUM_WARNINGS setting to False.


While the APT publisher respects the ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting, the verbatim publisher will mirror an exact copy of the synced upstream metadata. By its very nature, the verbatim publisher does not respect the ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting. If your policy prohibits the presence of certain checksum types, either do not use the verbatim publisher, or only synchronize repositories that are already compliant with your policy.

Enabling MD5 and/or SHA1

In order to opt in to MD5 and/or SHA1, the values md5 and/or sha1 must be added to the list configured for the ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting. In addition a pulpcore-manager command must be run to generate any missing checksums within the DB for the settings change to take effect.

See the pulpcore configuration documentation for more information on how to apply settings. Look for the section on ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS in the pulpcore settings documentation in particular.

Once you have updated your configuration file you will need to halt your Pulp instance, and then run the following command to ensure your DB is made consistent with your ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting:

pulpcore-manager handle-artifact-checksums


Missing checksums will need to be recalculated for all your artifacts which can take some time. If you have a missmatch between your configured ALLOWED_CONTENT_CHECKSUMS setting and the checksums present in the DB, Pulp will simply refuse to start.

Security Implications

APT repository metadata files (release files and package indecies) will typically include several checksums for all referenced files. During synchronization, pulp_deb will check the downloaded files against the provided checksums. Together with a valid (and trusted) release file signature this will guarantee the integrity of the synchronized repository. During publication, the APT publisher will include any supported (and permitted) checksumtypes in any metadata files it publishes.

While the MD5 and SHA-1 algorithms are no longer considered secure, pulp_deb requires the presence of SHA-256 checksums to function, and is therefore never dependent on unsecure algorithms for integrity checking. MD5 and SHA-1 are checked and used in addition to the other algorithms. This is consistent with widespread usage within the larger Debian ecosystem.