Boring crypto that simply works


X25519 key exchange


#include <monocypher.h>

int crypto_x25519(uint8_t       raw_shared_secret[32],
                  const uint8_t your_secret_key  [32],
                  const uint8_t their_public_key [32]);

void crypto_x25519_public_key(uint8_t       your_public_key[32],
                              const uint8_t your_secret_key[32]);


crypto_x25519() computes a shared secret with your_secret_key and their_public_key. It is a low-level primitive. Use crypto_key_exchange() unless you have a specific reason not to.

crypto_x25519_public_key() is the same as crypto_key_exchange_public_key() It deterministically computes the public key from a random secret key.

The arguments are:

Return values

Some public keys force the shared key to a known constant. crypto_x25519() returns -1 if it detects such a public key, otherwise it returns 0. This never happens with legitimate public keys.

The return value has been deprecated. crypto_x225519() will return void starting with the next major release of Monocypher. Some poorly designed protocols require to test for "contributory" behaviour, which ensures that no untrusted party forces the shared secret to a known constant. Protocols should instead be designed in such a way that no such check is necessary, namely by authenticating the other party or exchanging keys over a trusted channel.


Generate a pair of shared keys with your secret key and their public key. (This can help nonce management for full duplex communications.)

const uint8_t their_pk     [32]; /* Their public key          */
const uint8_t your_sk      [32]; /* Your secret key           */
uint8_t       shared_secret[32]; /* Shared secret (NOT a key) */
crypto_x25519(shared_secret, your_sk, their_pk);
/* Wipe secrets if they are no longer needed */
crypto_wipe(your_sk, 32);

uint8_t shared_keys[64]; /* Two shared session keys */
crypto_blake2b(shared_keys, shared_secret, 32);
const uint8_t *key_1 = shared_keys;      /* Shared key 1 */
const uint8_t *key_2 = shared_keys + 32; /* Shared key 2 */
/* Wipe secrets if they are no longer needed */
crypto_wipe(shared_secret, 32);


This function implements X25519, described in RFC 7748.

Security considerations

If either of the long term secret keys leaks, it may compromise all past messages. This can be avoided by using protocols that provide forward secrecy, such as the X3DH key agreement protocol.

Implementation details

The most significant bit of the public key is systematically ignored. It is not needed because every public key should be smaller than 2^255-19, which fits in 255 bits. If another implementation of X25519 gives you a key that is not fully reduced and has its high bit set, the computation will fail. On the other hand, it also means you may use this bit for other purposes (such as parity flipping for Ed25519 compatibility).