Bitcoin Developer Grant
Michael Ford (AKA fanquake) has been a Bitcoin contributor since 2012 and in 2019 he was added to the list of maintainers for the Bitcoin Core software project on GitHub. Michael has been awarded a Bitcoin developer grant and it is based on the open source template grant contract.
Reports by Michael Ford:
In this piece, Michael explains four security improvements to Bitcoin Core that he has been working on: i. Fixing a hidden bug which prevented a security check from occurring, ii. Fixing a security weakness on Windows, iii. Solving a problem which weakened the random number generator caused by a failure to detect a function on MacOS, and iv. Adding tests for a discrepancy in the behaviour of the macOS linker, when compared to the documentation. This work illustrates the importance of testing on multiple platforms.
In this report, Michael explains recent Bitcoin Core build system improvements and how he has been involved in removing third party software dependencies, such as OpenSSL. The number of packages built in Bitcoin Core 0.19.99 is down 44% since Bitcoin Core 0.13.2 and the build time has fallen 42% since the peak, to 135 seconds, according to Michael’s tests. This work has improved the security of the software, by reducing the attack surface and improved software performance.