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Date:	Thu, 10 Jul 2014 17:08:32 +0200
From:	Oleg Nesterov <>
To:	Kees Cook <>
Cc:	LKML <>,
	Andy Lutomirski <>,
	"Michael Kerrisk (man-pages)" <>,
	Alexei Starovoitov <>,
	Andrew Morton <>,
	Daniel Borkmann <>,
	Will Drewry <>,
	Julien Tinnes <>,
	David Drysdale <>,
	Linux API <>,
	"" <>,
	linux-arch <>,
	linux-security-module <>
Subject: Re: [PATCH v9 11/11] seccomp: implement SECCOMP_FILTER_FLAG_TSYNC

On 07/10, Kees Cook wrote:
> On Wed, Jul 9, 2014 at 11:05 AM, Oleg Nesterov <> wrote:
> >
> >> +     /*
> >> +      * Make sure we cannot change seccomp or nnp state via TSYNC
> >> +      * while another thread is in the middle of calling exec.
> >> +      */
> >> +     if (flags & SECCOMP_FILTER_FLAG_TSYNC &&
> >> +         mutex_lock_killable(&current->signal->cred_guard_mutex))
> >> +             goto out_free;
> >
> > -EINVAL looks a bit confusing in this case, but this is cosemtic because
> > userspace won't see this error-code anyway.
> Happy to use whatever since, as you say, it's cosmetic. Perhaps -EAGAIN?

Or -EINTR. I do not really mind, I only mentioned this because I had another

> >>       spin_lock_irq(&current->sighand->siglock);
> >> +     if (unlikely(signal_group_exit(current->signal))) {
> >> +             /* If thread is dying, return to process the signal. */
> >
> > OK, this doesn't hurt, but why?
> >
> > You could check __fatal_signal_pending() with the same effect. And since
> > we hold this mutex, exec (de_thread) can be the source of that SIGKILL.
> > We take this mutex specially to avoid the race with exec.
> >
> > So why do we need to abort if we race with kill() or exit_grouo() ?
> In my initial code inspection that we could block waiting for the
> cred_guard mutex, with exec holding it, exec would schedule death in
> de_thread, and then once it released, the tsync thread would try to
> keep running.
> However, in looking at this again, now I'm concerned this produces a
> dead-lock in de_thread, since it waits for all threads to actually
> die, but tsync will be waiting with the killable mutex.

That is why you should always use _killable (or _interruptible) if you
want to take ->cred_guard_mutex.

If this thread races with de_thread() which holds this mutex, it will
be killed and mutex_lock_killable() will fail.

(to clarify; this deadlock is not "fatal", de_thread() can be killed too,
 but this doesn't really matter).

> So I think I got too defensive when I read the top of de_thread where
> it checks for pending signals itself.
> It seems like I can just safely remove the singal_group_exit checks?
> The other paths (non-tsync seccomp_set_mode_filter, and
> seccomp_set_mode_strict)

Yes, I missed another signal_group_exit() in seccomp_set_mode_strict().
It looks equally unneeded.

> I can't decide which feels cleaner: just letting stuff
> clean up naturally on death or to short-circuit after taking
> sighand->siglock.

I'd prefer to simply remove the singal_group_exit checks.

I won't argue if you prefer to keep them, but then please add a comment
to explain that this is not needed for correctness.

Because otherwise the code looks confusing, as if there is a subtle reason
why we must not do this if killed.


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