[strongSwan-dev] Adding support for subnets in transport mode (Feature #196)

Tobias Brunner tobias at strongswan.org
Fri Jul 17 10:39:39 CEST 2015

Hi Stuart,

> This could be construed as a misconfiguration

That would be my take on this.  I initially though of using the
addresses in `right` too, however, there are a several reasons why I
didn't implement it.  left|rightsubnet are already used for policies, so
we don't have to add/change any code.  left|right currently don't have
the same feature set:  Ranges can't currently be used in
left|rightsubnet, and host names would have to be resolved (maybe with a
specific address family, somehow to be determined, as hint) before
installing the policies.  Using left|rightsubnet also allows users to
limit the traffic selectors to certain protocols and ports, which is not
possible with left|right.  And lastly, having two options to achieve the
same thing might be even more confusing.  So I think having right=%any
as a precondition for this and just use left|rightsubnet to define the
policies is much simpler.

One alternative would we to enable this feature only with a dedicated
flag (i.e. not by right=%any).  That way `right` could still be limited
to certain addresses/subnets to avoid that the config is considered for
other clients (see below).  But that could still lead to
misconfigurations if the values don't match.  There is a situation,
though, where this could really simplify the configuration, which is
where you have very different configs for different sets of hosts.  With
the current solution you'd have to add additional configs with a
matching `right` value _before_ the right=%any configs (while the latter
would fail with mismatching traffic selectors for unrelated clients, no
switch to a matching configuration would happen so late in the process).

> but my reading of the documentation implies that it is valid to specify
> a range for right.

Yes, but only as responder to limit the clients for which a config is
considered.  To initiate a connection (without trap-any) an IP or host
name is required (the first one is used), as documented on the man and
wiki pages.


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