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Ristretto255.js Build Status

Ristretto255.js is a pure-JS implementation of the Ristretto255 group operations, built on top of the popular TweetNaCl.js crypto library.


This project gives a high-level javascript API for operations in the ristretto255 prime-order group. The ristretto255 group enjoys the speed and safety of Curve25519 while also being prime-order, so that cryptographic protocols built on top of it will be resistant to cofactor-related attacks.


To install with the yarn package manager, simply run:

yarn add ristretto255


The main files of this repository include:

  • ristretto255.js contains a well documented javascript code exporting function that provide operations over the prime-order group ristretto255 as well as operations over the scalars for that group,

  • ristretto255.min.js is the minified version of ristretto255.js identical to it in functionality; this file is ship-ready,

  • ristretto255.benchmarks.html shows an example of usage for all the exported functions. This file can be opened in the browser to run the benchmarks and check for browser compatibility.

This library exports the following types of arithmetic operations:

Operations over a prime order group (ristretto255) of order L

The inputs to all of the functions below should be valid ristretto255 points (which can be checked by calling ristretto255.isValid()); otherwise, the behavior is undefined, and functions may throw exceptions.

All ristretto255 elements are stored in the serialized format as 32-element byte arrays of type Uint8Array(32).

  • getRandom(): returns a random point on ristretto255
  • isValid(P): returns true or false
  • fromHash(h): returns P instantiated from a Uint8Array(64) (such as the output of SHA512)
  • add(P, Q): returns P + Q
  • sub(P, Q): returns P - Q
  • scalarMultBase(x): returns x * BASE
  • scalarMult(x, P): returns x * P
Operations over scalars - big integers modulo L, where

L = 2^252 + 27742317777372353535851937790883648493.

Each scalar (a big integer modulo L) is of type Float64Array(32). Each of the 32 elements is at most 8 bits (auxiliary bits are needed to accommodate overflows during arithmetic operations).

Scalar operations implement simple school-book methods to optimize for a minimal javascript binary size.

  • scalar.getRandom(): returns a randomly generated scalar mod L
  • scalar.invert(x): returns 1/x mod L
  • scalar.negate(x): returns -x mod L
  • scalar.add(x, y): returns x + y mod L
  • scalar.sub(x, y): returns x - y mod L
  • scalar.mul(x, y): returns x * y mod L
Unsafe operations over Edwards EC points

Unsafe operations give a way to use the ristretto255 group more efficiently, but these APIs should be used with great care. It is recommended in the ristretto255 RFC that an implementation that does a number of group operations first transforms ristretto255 elements to EC points (unsafe.point.fromBytes), then performs necessary operations in the EC group (e.g. unsafe.point.scalarMult) and transforms the resulting EC point back to ristretto255 group (unsafe.point.toBytes). However since JavaScript does not provide type safety, it is easier to mix-up different types, thus we highly recommend the use of safe operations described in the previous sections instead. The implementations must not operate on internal (EC) representations other than in between unsafe.point.fromBytes and unsafe.point.toBytes functions.

The format for the EC point is four coordinates: [gf(), gf(), gf(), gf()], where each coordinate gf() = Float64Array(16) is a 16-element array, where each element has 16 least significant bits used.

  • unsafe.point.alloc(): allocated a placeholder for an EC point
  • unsafe.point.toBytes(P): converts an EC point P to a ristretto255 element (the conversion is well defined only for even EC points)
  • unsafe.point.fromBytes(P, E): converts a ristretto255 element E to an EC point P
  • unsafe.point.getRandom(): generates a random EC point
  • unsafe.point.fromHash(h): generates an EC point from h, a 64-element byte array Uint8Array(64) such as an output of SHA512
  • unsafe.point.add(P, Q): adds two EC points P and Q
  • unsafe.point.sub(P, Q): subtracts two EC points P and Q
  • unsafe.point.scalarMultBase(Q, x): multiplies the base EC point by a scalar x and stores the result in Q
  • unsafe.point.scalarMult(Q, P, x): multiplies a given EC point P by a scalar x and stores the result in Q

Development and testing

  1. Clone this repository with git clone.

  2. cd ristretto255-js/

  3. To install the necessary dependencies, run yarn. (Note: Building this library requires node version >=6.9.0)

  4. To build ristretto255.min.js, run yarn build.

  5. To lint and test, run yarn lint and yarn test.


To run the benchmarks in a browser, open ristretto255.benchmarks.html. Here are the benchmarks from a MacBook Pro (15-inch, 2018) with 2.9 GHz Intel Core i9:

ristretto255 group scalar group
getRandom 0.48 ms scalar.getRandom 0.01 ms
fromHash 0.53 ms scalar.invert 2.60 ms
add 0.41 ms scalar.negate 0.01 ms
sub 0.41 ms scalar.add 0.02 ms
scalarMultBase 3.47 ms scalar.sub 0.03 ms
scalarMult 3.61 ms scalar.mul 0.01 ms
UNSAFE - Edwards EC group
unsafe.point.toBytes 0.13 ms
unsafe.point.fromBytes 0.13 ms
unsafe.point.getRandom 0.26 ms
unsafe.point.fromHash 0.27 ms
unsafe.point.add 0.01 ms
unsafe.point.sub 0.01 ms
unsafe.point.scalarMultBase 3.30 ms
unsafe.point.scalarMult 3.27 ms

System requirements

We inherit the limitations of TweetNaCl.js and support modern browsers that support the Window.crypto API and can generate cryptographically secure random numbers (which can be checked here).

This code can also be run with Node.js.


The authors of this code are Valeria Nikolaenko (@valerini) and Kevin Lewi (@kevinlewi).


Special thanks go to Kostas Chalkias (@kchalkias) and David Wong (@mimoo) for reviewing and giving feedback, Henry de Valence (@hdevalence) for answering questions about ristretto255, Dmitry Chestnykh (@dchest) for extending TweetNaCl.js to support this library, and Kyle Summers (@KyleJSummers) for recommending javascript build tooling.


This project is MIT licensed.


Javascript implementation of the Ristretto255 group operations, built on top of the popular TweetNaCl.js crypto library



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