Updated version of DRYAD generator

A “Bombe” early computer, used to break the German Enigma code

After I released the DRYAD generator, I received  few reports that it would generate the same output every time.    This is not good, even for training.   Work, family, and life put my programming efforts on the back burner for a while.   When I finally got back to it, I discovered that I committed an amateur programming mistake. 

I forgot to seed the random generator

Computers are “deterministic” machines.   That means that every action has a predictable action, or that the actions are “determined” by the programming.   That is a good thing because computers would not be very useful if their output changed at random.   However for generating cryptographic materials you need good randomness.   In order to create the appearance of randomness computers use a “Pseudo Random Number Generator” (PRNG).   A PRNG basically takes a number as input called the “seed”, and then runs it through a complicated series of mathematical equations that gives you a result that seems random, with no correlation to the input seed.   For example, a seed of “1” might yield a result of “72542” while a seed of “2” might result in “17”.

My DRYAD bug

I forgot to add a line defining a seed, so most likely it would default to “0”
resulting in the same DRYAD page being generated every time the program was run.

The Seed is the key

In order to get pseudo randomness that does not repeat, many programming classes teach using a value of time as the random seed.   Computers keep time by counting the number of seconds since some predetermined date/time reference (called an “epoch”)
Since real time does not repeat I.E. it will only be 12:01 PM on January the 1st, 2017 once, using it as a seed guarantees that our seed is never repeated.   
This is what I have added to the 1.01 version of the DRYAD generator.
Link HERE!

While it is pseudo random, it is still not good enough

While this is unpredictable enough for video games and entertainment, it sucks for real cryptography.   For a single line on a DRYAD sheet, there are 403,291,461,126,605,635,584,000,000 possible combinations.   That is over 403 Septillion combinations.   However there are only just over 35 million seconds in a year.   If you know the formula a given crypto uses, and you know it uses “time” as the seed, then you can run the formula and simply increment the seed, starting at the earliest possible time the computer was used.   A modern computer can test years of “time” based seed in a few minutes, leaving a searchable database of every possible DRYAD sheet that could be generated in a given year.   Not very secure by a determined adversary.

This is why the current version of the DRYAD generator should be limited to training purposes ONLY!

I hope to have an improved version later that will solve the “seed” problem.
An ideal crypto-secure seed would come from a very large unpredictable source.   Government grade high level crypto use special devices that use an “entropy” source.
“Entropy” is defined as “lack of order or predictability.”  

Imagine a very sensitive thermometer that can accurately read to 1/1000 of a degree.   If that thermometer is in a computer case, it will measure the fluctuations of temperature inside.      The temperature is affected by ambient room temperature, how hard the CPU and graphics cards are running, fan speed, etc.   The temperature can fluctuate by as much as twenty degrees.   twenty degrees doesn’t sound like a lot, a fluctuation between 100.0001 and 100.9999 degrees overs a much larger range of unpredictability. 

Government certified entropy devices have been designed AND tested to insure that they are truly entropic (unpredictable) and evenly distributed. (if they generate a number between 1 and 10, a sample of a million tests should have roughly equal quantities of each value.)   

Because of the value of entropic seeds in generating random numbers for cryptography, most modern computer operating systems now have “entropy pools” to be used in seeding PRNGs.   These entropy pools combine mouse movements, keyboard timings, temperatures, hard drive seek times, and other unpredictable sources to populate the pool.

The next version of the DRYAD generator

I hope to include strong entropy and a better PRNG for the next version of the DRYAD generator.   After that, I hope to add a GUI.   I won’t put a timeframe on it, because if I do, life will guarantee that I won’t make the deadline.

P.S.   The big numbers:

The number of possible combinations on a single DRYAD line:
aka 403.29 Septillion

The number of possible combinations for a full DRYAD sheet:
I can not count that high.   

Number of seconds in a year: (and possible time based random seeds for a given year)
aka 31.54 Million

Estimated age of the universe:
13.82 Billion years old
Number of Seconds in the universe so far:
About 484,000,000,000,000,000
aka 484 Quadrillion
aka orders of magnitude fewer seconds in the history of the universe, than possible combinations for a single line of a DRYAD sheet!

Sparks31 upcoming classes!

Link Here!!!

From the link:

These classes are a combination of the beginner and intermediate courses.

The class will revolve around the basics of low power/qrp/covert operation with low-profile/improvised antennas, and communications monitoring focused for VHF/UHF COMINT.  It is strongly advised that the attendee have at least a general class ham license, as HF operation will be involved. If you don’t have a general license, you can do a COMINT/monitoring track on the Sunday FTX.

Topics to be discussed will include:

  • Considerations for III%er/Grid-Down Communications
  • Equipment Selection
  • Improvised Antennas
  • Low Profile/Covert Operations
  • Basic Cryptographic Systems and Techniques
  • Non-Radio Communications Options
  • IFF (Identification Friend/Foe) and Interoperability System Considerations
  • Basic Improvised Surveillance/Security Systems – Off The Shelf Solutions
  • VHF/UHF Communications Monitoring/COMINT (Communications Intelligence)  Equipment and Systems
  • Basic COMINT and COMINT Analysis

Volume 2 Table of Contents

Work on Volume 2 is well under way.

I have the first several chapters done, and the table of contents created to serve as an outline.

As chapters are completed, It may change how I present some of the later material, so the TOC WILL change.

Here is the TOC.. .If you see something you think should be added, let me know.   Keep in mind, SIGINT and Electronic Warefare will be covered in Volume Three.

Table of Contents

I. Introduction
II. Security
D) Threat SIGINT Capabilities

Part 1: Administration
I. Define standard operating procedures. (SOP’s)
II. Communication Table of Organization and Equipment
.  A) Category of radios:
.  B) Radio Operation Constraints
III. UHF/VHF Radio Types (and High HF)
.  A) FRS/GMRS portable radios:
.  B) GMRS only portable and mobile radios:
.  C) MURS portable radios:
.  D) Citizens Band (CB) portable radios:
.  E) Citizens Band (CB) Mobile radios:
.  F) ISR and SMR band digital frequency hopping voice radios:
.  G) Business Band analog voice portable and mobile radios:
.  H) Business Band analog voice Chineese import radios:
.  I) Business Band digital voice portable and mobile radios:
.  J) UHF/VHF Ham radio fm analog voice portable and mobile radios:
.  K) UHF/VHF Ham radio SSB mobile radios:
.  L) UHF/VHF Ham radio low usage bands portable and mobile radios:
.  M) UHF/VHF Ham radio digital voice portable and mobile radios:
.  N) UHF/VHF Ham radio digital voice with transverter to low usage bands portable and   .    mobile radios:
.  O) UHF/VHF Ham digital data and packet radio:
.  P) 10m Ham portable and mobile radios:
IV. Range Beyond Handheld
.  A) Relay
.  B) Simplex Repeater
.  C) Duplex Repeater
.  D) Cross Band Repeater
.  E) Multipoint links
.  F) Directional Antennas
V. Beyond Line Of Sight (BLOS)
.  A) HF Groundwave
.  B) HF Skywave
.  D) mixed band relays
VI. HF Radio Types
.  A) High Frequency (HF) Ham analog voice radios:
.  B) High Frequency (HF) Ham continous wave (CW) morse code radios:
.  C) High Frequency (HF) Ham digital text mode radios:
.  D) High Frequency (HF) Ham graphic mode radios:
.  E) High Frequency (HF) Ham digital voice radios:
F.  ) High Frequency (HF) Ham digital packet and data radios:
VII. BLOS Less Common Methods
.  A) Microwave relay
.  B) Tropo Scatter
.  C) EME/ Moonbounce
.  D) Meteor Scatter
.  E) HM-mesh/VOIP
.  F) HamSat
.  G) Sat Phone
VIII. Other Means of Communications
.  A) POTS
.  B) Field Phones
.  C) VOIP
.  D) Visual Signals
.  E) Sound Signals
.  IX. Cellular Telephones
XI. OPSEC and COMSEC and Sensitive Materials
XII. Codenames and Codewords
XIII. Generating SOI’s
XIV. Generating OTP’s and Dryad Sheets
XV. Generating Codebooks

Part 2: Mission Planning and Opertaions
I. Spectrum Management
III. Physical Setups
.  A) Organization, Links, and OPORD
.  B) Relay/ Repeater site selection
.  C) CP and CP site selection
.  D) LP/OP and site selection
.  E) Vehicle Setups
IV. Handling Traffic
V. Nets
VI. Supporting Joint Operations

Part 3: Training and Discipline
I. Basics of Training
.  A) Crawl, Walk, Run
.  B) Planning lessons and classroom basics
.  C) Field training basics
II. Classroom exercises
.  A) physically using a radio
.  B) Standard Operating Procedures
III. Field Excercises
.  A) Signals specific drills vs Signals as part of other exercises.
.  B) Using equipment in the field
.  C) Equipment performance testing
.  D) Alternates, contingencies and failover
.  E) After Actions
IV. Recruiting
.  A) Creating a program of continuity and shared responsibilities
.  B) Expanding the signals team, and training its new members

Part 4 Conclusion

Part 5 Appendices

MDT/DTG JointNeighborhood Protection Team Skills Class

Field training

From 15 to 17 May 2015, MDT (JC Dodge) and DTG (Tom Randall) will conduct a Neighborhood Protection Team skills oriented course as described in, “A Failure of Civility”, by Mike Garand & Jack Lawson, comprised of classes taken from both MDT’s, “Regional Security Forces” and DTG’s “Essential Skills” series at MDT’s training site.   While MDT & DTG will be hosting the class, there’ll be additional ‘guest’ instructors conducting various classes – we’ve got a great line up! Participants will be exposed to various perspectives of NPT operations, skill enhancement methods, and ‘tricks o’ the trade’ that demonstrate a resource and information rich environment for the person who wants to either refresh or learn what might be necessary in a grid down situation they may face one day. Classes will be presented from a ‘Train the Trainer’ perspective.

Arrival, Meet & Greet: 1000 15 May

Class start: 1200 15 May

Class end: 1700 17 May

Location:  Echo Valley Training Center, WV – http://www.echovalleytrainingcenter.com/

Participants will live in a field environment the entire class period and provide their own food & water. Recommend getting individual fitness levels as good as can reasonably be expected by class start in order to get the most out of the class as the participant possibly can.

Cost: $300 per person; Teams (6 people registering together) $250 per person

Hand Outs on various classes will be provided to all attendees.

To confirm attendance, contact either MDT or DTG via email for specifics on payment. Once attendance is confirmed by course fee payment, each participant will be sent a Release of Liability, a recommended pack list, a link to purchase a MGRS map of the training area (optional), and directions. The Release of Liability must be executed per the instructions provided and presented on upon arrival at the training site.

Class size is limited to 36 people, so don’t hesitate if you want your team to attend.

Subjects include:

  • Proper Wear – Clothing/Equip
  • Rucksack Packing/Waterproofing
  • Basic Survival (Shelter, fire, water, etc.)
  • Edged Weapons Selection & Familiarization
  • Field Hygiene
  • Land Navigation Review & Practicum
  • Individual/Team Movement
  • Small Team Patrol Base Ops
  • Night Operation Fundamentals
  • TC3 Orientation
  • Basic Field Fortifications (Hasty Positions)
  • Camouflage, Cover & Concealment
  • Basic Patrolling Walk Through

This is going to be a great class!

National Patriot Field Day

WHAT: National Patriot Field Day 2015 (NPFD 2015/1, pronounced “nip-fed twenty-fifteen slash one”) – Continental FTX

WHEN: 1300Z 19 APRIL 2015 – 0100Z 20 APRIL 2015

WHERE: CONUS (at a minimum)

WHO: You and your team; see below

WHY: Demonstrating that skills learned over the past six years can be applied successfully in the field in coordination/communication with other like-minded freedom-loving people located across North America

HOW: Entirely at teams’ discretion, subject to provisions below

CONCEPT: NPFD will provide an opportunity for patriots of all interests, abilities, and skills to field those talents over a 12-hour period and communicate their wins/losses/corrective actions to local, regional, and national UHF/VHF/HF networks.

Essential elements of the FTX are as follows:

1) Peaceful demonstration of freedom-minded skills; keep itrespectful and legal
2) Team planning and execution in support of coordinated effort, with comms up through local net and onward
3) All teams who complete their self-defined missions within parameters (honor system) and communicate their results with the FTX net are eligible for noogies and potential better prizes
4) Local/regional/national/international(?) comms will need to be established and maintained for the 12-hour FTX period plus a one-hour bumper prior to and after the ground teams (1200Z 19 APRIL – 0200Z 20 APRIL)
5) The more varied participants, the more challenging the FTX– so contact your associates in the re-enactor, EMCOMMS, EMS, and any other disciplines to encourage their participation, as per the following hypothetical examples…


Strike a Pose: The Power of Positions

Special Forces in Northern Afghanistan

The ongoing resurrection of the ancestral health movement has led to a lot of valuable lessons for survivalists and preppers, from both a health, nutrition, and longevity standpoint, as well as from a fitness and conditioning standpoint. One of the most important developments, from my perspective, has been the “barefoot” or “minimalist” running movement. Despite a solid sub-12:30 two-mile run time throughout my time in uniform, and occasionally achieving the 100 points of a sub-11:54 two-mile run, I was never a good runner.
Running hurt. I suffered shin splints, fractured tarsal and metatarsal bones, torn up ankle and knee cartilage, and spinal compressions. When I first started hearing about alternative running methods a couple of years ago, I was all ears, especially when they promised reduced incidence of injury, increased speed, and more efficiency.


The rest of the article HERE on Mountain Guerrilla

From DTG: What to do in the down time!

winter doldrums

Here’s a few things you can do, in no particular order, to help you get through these last formal weeks of winter:

  • Detail disassemble, clean, and lubricate (“Frog Lube” is the cat’s ass!) your Personal Self-Defense platform.
  • Check the edge and hone your primary fixed blade ‘field knife.’  If it’s not razor sharp, it’s not ready for the field.
  • Continue with your regular PT program.
  • Empty your ruck and LBE/LBV, and go over it looking for rips/tears and make repairs as needed.
  • Repack your ruck and LBE; get your ‘temperate’ load out set to go (keep your cold weather set up for now…you never know, really.)
  • Check your compasses for correct operation.
  • Continue with your regular PT program.
  • Re-read, “A Failure of Civility.”
  • Re-read our series on Basic Patrolling here, here, here, and here.
  • Empty any ‘ready’ magazines, disassemble them clean and lightly coat the spring with a good rust preventative lubricant (‘lightly’ means barely discernible) and reassemble.


  • Set up all the ammo taken out of your magazines as this year’s ‘training’ ammo and load your freshly cleaned and lubed magazines with ‘fresh’ ammo.  (Tip:  To keep finger oil off the brass that will eventually cause corrosion, consider wearing rubber gloves while loading the fresh ammo.)
  • Change up and continue with your regular PT program.
  • Clean, disinfect and refill your water carrying equipment with stabilized oxygen treated water.
  • Practice your dry fire a couple times a week or more with both carbine and pistol (you always ensure you drop the magazine and check the chamber before this practice, right??)

dry fire drill

  • Check your field boots for tears, rips, or frayed laces and replace/repair as necessary.  If you wear leather boots, now’s a good time to Sno-Seal them and carefully melt it into the leather with a heat gun on low.
  • Continue with your regular PT program.
  • Register for our April 25/26 Land Nav class here.
  • Read M. Stanton Evans’, “The Theme is Freedom.”
  • Inventory and cycle your ‘Shelter In Place’ food supplies; add what you can where you can.
  • Sign up for our ‘online’ classroom here.  Lots of good downloadable NPT related information for not much money…just sayin’.
  • Help plan, get involved in or host a Neighborhood Protection Association meeting as outlined in, “A Failure of Civility,” here.  (If you don’t have a book, keep watching their website.  Even with the price increase, it’s the best money you’re going to spend on a ‘how to’ for your local neighborhood.)
  • Continue with your regular PT program.

Obviously, these aren’t the only things you might consider doing, the key is to not get so bored you don’t do anything, and you basically waste good prep time.