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Date:	Tue, 6 Oct 2015 10:20:48 +0200
From:	Ingo Molnar <>
To:	Daniel Borkmann <>
Cc:	Alexei Starovoitov <>,
	"David S. Miller" <>,
	Andy Lutomirski <>,
	Hannes Frederic Sowa <>,
	Eric Dumazet <>,
	Kees Cook <>,,,
Subject: Re: [PATCH net-next 1/2] bpf: enable non-root eBPF programs

* Daniel Borkmann <> wrote:

> On 10/06/2015 09:13 AM, Ingo Molnar wrote:
> >
> >* Alexei Starovoitov <> wrote:
> >
> >>On 10/5/15 3:14 PM, Daniel Borkmann wrote:
> >>>One scenario that comes to mind ... what happens when there are kernel
> >>>pointers stored in skb->cb[] (either from the current layer or an old
> >>>one from a different layer that the skb went through previously, but
> >>>which did not get overwritten)?
> >>>
> >>>Socket filters could read a portion of skb->cb[] also when unprived and
> >>>leak that out through maps. I think the verifier doesn't catch that,
> >>>right?
> >>
> >>grrr. indeed. previous layer before sk_filter() can leave junk in there.
> >
> >Could this be solved by activating zeroing/sanitizing of this data if there's an
> >active BPF function around that can access that socket?
> I think this check could only be done in sk_filter() for testing these
> conditions (unprivileged user + access to cb area), so it would need to
> happen from outside a native eBPF program. :/

Yes, the kernel (with code running outside of any eBPF program) would guarantee 
that those data fields are zeroed/sanitized, if there's an eBPF program that is 
attached to that socket.

> [...] Also classic BPF would then need to test for it, since a socket filter 
> doesn't really know whether native eBPF is loaded there or a classic-to-eBPF 
> transformed one, and classic never makes use of this. Anyway, it could be done 
> by adding a bit flag cb_access:1 to the bpf_prog, set it during eBPF 
> verification phase, and test it inside sk_filter() if I see it correctly.

That could also be done in an unlikely() branch, to keep the cost to the non-eBPF 
case near zero.

> The reason is that this sanitizing must only be done in the 'top-level' program 
> that is run from sk_filter() _directly_, because a user at any time could decide 
> to put an already loaded eBPF fd into a tail call map. And cb[] is then used to 
> pass args/state around between two programs, thus it cannot be unconditionally 
> cleared from within the program. The association to a socket filter 
> (SO_ATTACH_BPF) happens at a later time after a native eBPF program has already 
> been loaded via bpf(2).

So zeroing tends to be very cheap and it could also be beneficial to performance 
in terms of bringing the cacheline into the CPU cache. But I really don't know the 
filter code so I'm just handwaving.


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