This is a rough summary of the FROST Implementer’s Round Table on November 8, 2023.

Meeting Our Participants

We led off the meeting with the participants answering some ice breakers about FROST.

What do we love about FROST?

  • Interesting work with quorums.
  • How it can impact recover flows.
  • The power of resilience.

What is the most difficult part of FROST?

  • Getting FROST deployed!
  • Understanding what’s going on in the community and what people are doing.
  • Making it human-oriented and easy to use.
  • Generally, the user experience is difficult & a concern.
  • The DKG is the most difficult part!

What is the biggest upcoming concern?

  • STORM, a new key-generation scheme for use with FROST.
  • Getting it into the hands of users!

Project Introductions

Participants were present from two major FROST projects.


Repo has been audited. Publishing 1.0 release this week, finishing up main part of work.

Have a second, demo repo.

Final goal will be to have FROST in ZCash wallet.

Meanwhile, waiting for IETF process to finish.


Working on a PR, which is a mature status.

Plan is to split out signing code, which is ready to go.

  • Working on a FROST BIP, which will create spec for how to do DKG.
  • Then will update DKG code.
  • The goal is to have it merged by end of the year.
  • BIP will be how to implement FROST in the Bitcoin world.

Distributed Key Generation (DKG)

We next moved on to questions about specific elements of FROST, beginning with its innovative DKG.

Secp-ZKG is still working on simple DKG, without robustness requirement.

  • Explicit check at end so that we know that everyone agrees.
  • Includes secure channels & backup facilities.
  • The idea is that engineers can pick up & implement, without worrying about setup requirements or other complexities.
  • Secure channel communication just uses public keys to exchange a single message!
  • Public-key encryption identifies participants. [so assumption is that everyone agrees on each others’ public keys.]

Zcash has fundamentals without communication, which has to be handled by caller.

  • Implements as specified in FROST paper, as opposed to variants.
  • It assumes FROST under hood, not necessarily used in other settings.
    • There are other variants that aren’t proven secure! Need separate proofs for different settings!
    • STORM is proven for discrete-log keys.
  • It’s very straight-forward
  • But communication is the hard part!
  • It’s important to provide, because it’s what people want!

Trusted Dealer Generation

Zcash also implemented Trusted Dealer Generation

  • It’s simpler, no lines of communication needed
  • But in practice, people want DKG so that keys are never in memory
  • Still, Trusted Dealer Generation has its usage because you could generate keys offline or in trusted hardware

But other feeling is that it’s not worth the effort: if you’re going to the effort, DKG makes sense

But there are use cases for Trusted Dealer Generation!

  • Secp-ZKG may need Trusted Dealer Generation when it splits out its signing protocol
    • But they feel that’s mainly for test vectors
  • There might be other use cases, for people currently stuck in single-key models
  • Might be useful for some custodians, for example for signing with shares without bringing them together.

Resilience & Trust

We understand secrecy requirements of private keys. But not so much for the privacy & care of generated shares. So what are new trust models for DKG?

One of the issues is that traditionally a user could write down a seed phrase, but FROST is more complex: there’s a lot more information to backup. You can still sign if you lose a key, and a threshold of people can restore a share, so maybe there’s not much as concern. But there’s still some!

There are some difficult use cases! Need to agree on states. And FROST is only part of the answer!

  • How do you develop using Lightning Channels?
  • How do you develop in silicon and make sure there’s no tricking into reuse of nonces?



  • Implemented in Ristretto (subset of 25519) + Secp


  • Implemented on Secp

What about 25519? What are limitations? Do we need to move to Ristretto?

  • IETF draft covers a range of curves
  • There’s a range of ciphersuites
  • Can use one or both
  • 25519 is a bit less efficient than Ristretto
  • But it works!
  • Signatures created by this manner are compatible!

Likely couldn’t generate keys simultaneously for Ristretto & Secp because they’re very different.

  • Key generation is strongly tied to group order!

But probably Ristretto & 25519 shares could be used together!

Trusted Channels

Expanding on trusted channels: signing doesn’t require trusted channels, but the lack of trusted channels in signing introduces privacy and correlation issues. Is anyone doing anything on this?

  • Not being currently considered for specification.
  • Theoretically could run signing on DKG’s secure channel.


What alignment is needed with crypto or other projects?

Zcash is obviously focusing most on Zcash

  • Don’t have bandwidth to work with Bitcoin
  • But obviously would like to see specification & implementation

Secp-ZKP is similarly focused on own work

  • Feels like ideas & specs are pretty compatible other than curves

Blockchain Commons is interested in specifications & test vectors, because they work with Bitcoin, W3C, and IETF.


There’s a desire to do FROST on very low-power devices. Has anyone looked at performance issues & minimal processor requirements?

Not a lot of focus!

  • But there are speed-ups possible
  • Low-power devices should work, because lots of optimization on curves

Could use low-power devices to generate shares

  • And then anyone on any computer could combine them into a single signature

Standards & Other Protocols

IETF is just an informational draft.

  • Goal is to allow people to implement things in close to parity.
  • Any standardization would be a separate effort.

FROST will be a submission to threshold schemes with NIST.

BIP work ongoing too.

Wild Card Uses of FROST

FROST with Lightning!

  • Issues with consensus on state channels

More generally: there’s an idea of nesting FROST. To what extent can you nest FROST, for example with MuSig keys?

  • No security proofs
  • But there are interesting use cases!

Or, a BIP32-style key hierarchy with FROST.


Design goal was that ROAST be an extension of FROST

  • Supposed to provide robustness, so you’re guaranteed to get a signature
  • But may not be anyone working on it
  • So not much purpose in writing a standard at the moment

FROST Quorums

What other proofs can a FROST quorum do?

There’s some use cases for non-accountable signatures, where you don’t know who signed

  • But what about if you need accountable signature, where you know who signed?
  • Just publish the signature shares! Each one is independently verifiable as long as you know individual public keys.
  • The deficit is you lose size advantage of aggregated signatures.
  • So perhaps publish FROST signature and you also have a ledger where you persist the individual signature shares or even aggregate them in MuSig to minimize size
  • There was a question on whether individual signature shares are forgeable!
    • If you’re a participant you can forge signature shares of other participants, at least in MuSig2
      • Doesn’t work against classic FROST1
      • This was exact difference with security in FROST2

There’s a paper from Chelsea on private & accountable signatures, but you’re always going to need to a second accountability layer

Other Expansions

Adapter signatures offer opportunity for multi-hop locks

Could use MuSig-style ZKPs to create deterministic nonces for FROST.

There’s also the possibility of a FROST inside a FROST

  • If inner-FROST are all DKGed, have to do something else
  • But can convert independent random values into Shamir Shares
    • End up with independent sharing of new secret
    • And it’s all done without communication!
    • (As long as n & k aren’t too big!)

There are definitely opportunities!

The Next Step

The outreach to people working on FROST was helpful! And the meeting! Nice to have round table.

What is the next step?

  • Deployment!
    • Need to work with wallets!
  • Do this again! (In a few months)
    • Great information transmission
    • Repos are public, but are easy to lose track of!

And how do we get developers to use FROST?

  • By releasing “batteries included”, with all the pieces needed, and doing the best to keep “foot guns” away from developers