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Revision as of 10:09, 15 January 2018 by Jkurik (talk | contribs)

Kerberos in Python modernization


Replace usage of python-krbV and pykerberos with python-gssapi in all Fedora packages to enable their removal from Fedora. rharwood will author all necessary code changes; no new code from maintainers is required.


Current status

  • Targeted release: Fedora 28
  • Last updated: 2018-01-15
  • Tracker bug: <will be assigned by the Wrangler>

Detailed Description

Replace older, clunkier, less user-friendly python interfaces to Kerberos with python-gssapi. python-gssapi uses the GSSAPI interface, which is widely standardized, implemented by both MIT and Heimdal Kerberos, and much more user-friendly.

As part of this effort, python-requests-gssapi will be introduced to fedora to enable transition off of python-requests-kerberos (which requires pykerberos). Its package review (completed as of 2018-01-03) was rhbz#1527682

Please note that I will be providing all patches necessary to all affected components; no work is expected from other maintainers, other than normal review and backport handling.

Benefit to Fedora

python-krbV has no python3 support, so its replacement helps projects move to python3.

pykerberos is a very minimal implementation intended for use in calendar server and not intended for consumption by other applications. It has almost no documentation.

python-requests-kerberos is largely unmaintained upstream (PRs not getting merged for a very long time; no feedback on python-gssapi for a month). It's also mis-named for what it does, since both it and python-requests-gssapi provide GSSAPI/SPNEGO negotiation support, not just Kerberos.

python-gssapi is substantially more maintainable than python-krbV and pykerberos, and uses the preferred interface to Kerberos (GSSAPI). Its upstream is active (i.e., not dead) and it is hosted in a reasonable way (its own repository on github) that is friendly to new contributors. The project runs PR CI on Fedora explicitly already.

python-requests-gssapi provides a compatability layer for python-requests-kerberos, while also providing a new API that fits much better with projects already using python-gssapi. It is written and maintained by the same group that wrote python-gssapi and apache's mod_auth_gssapi.


  • Proposal owners: rharwood (responsible for providing patches and new package)
  • Other developers: maintainers of affected packages are expected to perform code review
  • Policies and guidelines: N/A (not needed for this Change)
  • Trademark approval: N/A (not needed for this Change)

Upgrade/compatibility impact

All dependency changes should be handled seamlessly by dnf without additional input from the user.

How To Test

The following should all produce no results:

dnf repoquery --whatrequires python-krbV

dnf repoquery --whatrequires python-kerberos

dnf repoquery --whatrequires python3-kerberos

User Experience

Change should not be noticeable, except to any users of the deprecated packages directly. dnf should pull in python-gssapi and python-requests-gssapi as appropriate.


All dependencies generated by dnf repoquery whatrequires packagename.


  • beaker-client
  • koji-web
  • python2-koji


  • did
  • offlineimap
  • python2-nitrate
  • python2-urllib2_kerberos
  • waiverdb


  • (none)


  • python3-requests-kerberos


  • (none)

Contingency Plan

  • Contingency mechanism: Ship them. python-krbV removal is highest priority since no python3 support.
  • Contingency deadline: Beta
  • Blocks release? No
  • Blocks product? No


python-gssapi docs can be found on its github page

requests-gssapi docs can be found on its github

Release Notes