Tuesday, November 15, 2022

macOS Ventura and smart cards status

Ventura (macOS 13.0) is now available since October, 2022.

I will compare this version to the previous one in Monterey I presented in macOS Monterey and smart cards status


$ grep -A 1 CFBundleShortVersionString /usr/libexec/SmartCardServices/drivers/ifd-ccid.bundle/Contents/Info.plist

The CCID driver has been upgraded from version 1.4.34 as in Monterey to version 1.5.0.

Apple Open Source

The Open Source components included in macOS are listed at https://opensource.apple.com/releases/
In addition to a .tar.gz archive, the source code is also available in a github (acquired by Microsoft in 2018) repository at https://github.com/apple-oss-distributions/SmartcardCCID.
It is then easy to see the patches applied by Apple to the CCID driver:
But the patches have no documentation on the why the patches are needed.
The only obvious patch is ccid-info-plist.patch that changes the value of ifdLogLevel from Info.plist configuration file from 3 (CRITICAL + INFO) to 1 (CRITICAL) in order to generate less logs.
It is also easy to compare two versions. For example the differences between the version for Monterey and the version for Ventura is available as a github diff between tags SmartcardCCID-55028 and SmartcardCCID-55031.

Crypto Token Kit

Nothing special to say. The source code of this part is not available.
My Objective-C sample "PC/SC" sample in Objective-C (synchronous) still builds and works fine.

Security message on first connection

On the first connection of my USB smart card reader I got this dialogue box:
It is nice to see the security improvements.
As expected, I do not get the dialogue box again after I selected "Allow".


No big changes in Ventura for the smart card world.