Applied Cryptography, Second Edition: Protocols, Algorthms, and Source Code in C (cloth)
(Publisher: John Wiley & Sons, Inc.)
Author(s): Bruce Schneier
ISBN: 0471128457
Publication Date: 01/01/96

Jacobi Symbol

The Jacobi symbol, written J(a,n), is a generalization of the Legendre symbol to composite moduli; it is defined for any integer a and any odd integer n. The function shows up in primality testing. The Jacobi symbol is a function on the set of reduced residues of the divisors of n and can be calculated by several formulas . This is one method:

Definition 1: J(a,n) is only defined if n is odd.
Definition 2: J(0,n) = 0.
Definition 3: If n is prime, then the Jacobi symbol J(a,n) = 0 if n divides a.
Definition 4: If n is prime, then the Jacobi symbol J(a,n) = 1 if a is a quadratic residue modulo n.
Definition 5: If n is prime, then the Jacobi symbol J(a,n) = - 1 if a is a quadratic nonresidue modulo n.
Definition 6: If n is composite, then the Jacobi symbol J(a,n) = J(a,p1) *...* J(a,pm), where p1...pm is the prime factorization of n.

The following algorithm computes the Jacobi symbol recursively:

Rule 1: J(1,n) = 1
Rule 2: J(a*b,n) = J(a,n)*J(b,n)
Rule 3: J(2,n) = 1 if (n2 - 1)/8 is even, and - 1 otherwise
Rule 4: J(a,n) = J((a mod n),n)
Rule 5: J(a,b1*b2) = J(a,b1)*J(a,b2)
Rule 6: If the greatest common divisor of a and b = 1, and a and b are odd:
Rule 6a: J(a,b) = J(b,a) if (a - 1)(b - 1)/4 is even
Rule 6b: J(a,b) = - J(b,a) if (a-1)(b-1)/4 is odd

Here is the algorithm in C:

```    /* This algorithm computes the Jacobi symbol recursively */
int jacobi(int a, int b)
{
int g;
assert(odd(b));
if (a >= b) a %= b;       /* by Rule 4 */
if (a == 0) return 0;       /* by Definition 2 */
if (a == 1) return 1;       /* by Rule 1 */
if (a < 0)
if (((b-1)/2 % 2 == 0)
return jacobi(-a,b);
else
return -jacobi(-a,b);
if (a % 2 == 0) /* a is even */
if (((b*b - 1)/8) % 2 == 0)
return +jacobi(a/2, b)
else
return -jacobi(a/2, b) /* by Rule 3 and Rule 2 */
g = gcd(a,b);
assert(odd(a)); /* this is guaranteed by the (a % 2 == 0)
test */
if (g == a) /* a exactly divides b */
return 0; /* by Rules 5 and 4, and Definition 2 */
else if (g != 1)
return jacobi(g,b) * jacobi(a/g, b); /* by Rule 2 */
else if (((a-1)*(b-1)/4) % 2 == 0)
return +jacobi(b,a);    /* by Rule 6a */
else
return -jacobi(b,a);    /* by Rule 6b */
}
```

If n is known to be prime beforehand, simply compute a((n-1)/2) mod n instead of running the previous algorithm; in this case J(a,n) is equivalent to the Legendre symbol.

The Jacobi symbol cannot be used to determine whether a is a quadratic residue mod n (unless n is prime, of course). Note that, if J(a,n) = 1 and n is composite, it is not necessarily true that a is a quadratic residue modulo n. For example:

J(7, 143) = J(7, 11)*J(7, 13) = (- 1)(- 1) = 1

However, there is no integer x such that x2 ≡ 7 (mod 143).

Blum Integers

If p and q are two primes, and both are congruent to 3 modulo 4, then n = pq is sometimes called a Blum integer. If n is a Blum integer, each quadratic residue has exactly four square roots, one of which is also a square; this is the principal square root. For example, the principal square root of 139 mod 437 is 24. The other three square roots are 185, 252, and 413.

Generators

If p is a prime, and g is less than p, then g is a generator mod p if

for each b from 1 to p - 1, there exists some a where ga ≡ b (mod p).

Another way of saying this is that g is primitive with respect to p.

For example, if p = 11, 2 is a generator mod 11:

210 = 1024 ≡ 1 (mod 11)
21 = 2 ≡ 2 (mod 11)
28 = 256 ≡ 3 (mod 11)
22 = 4 ≡ 4 (mod 11)
24 = 16 ≡ 5 (mod 11)
29 = 512 ≡ 6 (mod 11)
27 = 128 ≡ 7 (mod 11)
23 = 8 ≡ 8 (mod 11)
26 = 64 ≡ 9 (mod 11)
25 = 32 ≡ 10 (mod 11)

Every number from 1 to 10 can be expressed as 2a (mod p).

For p = 11, the generators are 2, 6, 7, and 8. The other numbers are not generators. For example, 3 is not a generator because there is no solution to

3a = 2 (mod 11)

In general, testing whether a given number is a generator is not an easy problem. It is easy, however, if you know the factorization of p - 1. Let q1, q2,..., qn be the distinct prime factors of p - 1. To test whether a number g is a generator mod p, calculate

g(p- 1)/q mod p

for all values of q = q1, q2,..., qn.

If that number equals 1 for some value of q, then g is not a generator. If that value does not equal 1 for any values of q, then g is a generator.

For example, let p = 11. The prime factors of p - 1 = 10 are 2 and 5. To test whether 2 is a generator:

2(11- 1)/5 (mod 11) = 4
2(11- 1)/2 (mod 11) = 10

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