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Date:   Wed, 15 Jan 2020 18:24:50 +0100
From:   Christian Brauner <>
Cc:     Serge Hallyn <>, Jann Horn <>,
        Oleg Nesterov <>,
        Eric Paris <>,
Subject: Re: [PATCH] ptrace: reintroduce usage of subjective credentials in

On Wed, Jan 15, 2020 at 06:17:36PM +0100, Christian Brauner wrote:
> Commit 69f594a38967 ("ptrace: do not audit capability check when outputing /proc/pid/stat")
> introduced the ability to opt out of audit messages for accesses to
> various proc files since they are not violations of policy.
> While doing so it somehow switched the check from ns_capable() to
> has_ns_capability{_noaudit}(). That means it switched from checking the
> subjective credentials of the task to using the objective credentials. I
> couldn't find the original lkml thread and so I don't know why this switch
> was done. But it seems wrong since ptrace_has_cap() is currently only used
> in ptrace_may_access(). And it's used to check whether the calling task
> (subject) has the CAP_SYS_PTRACE capability in the provided user namespace
> to operate on the target task (object). According to the cred.h comments
> this would mean the subjective credentials of the calling task need to be
> used.
> This switches it to use security_capable() because we only call
> ptrace_has_cap() in ptrace_may_access() and in there we already have a
> stable reference to the calling tasks creds under cred_guard_mutex so
> there's no need to go through another series of dereferences and rcu
> locking done in ns_capable{_noaudit}().
> Cc: Serge Hallyn <>
> Cc: Jann Horn <>
> Cc: Oleg Nesterov <>
> Cc: Eric Paris <>
> Cc:
> Fixes: 69f594a38967 ("ptrace: do not audit capability check when outputing /proc/pid/stat")
> Signed-off-by: Christian Brauner <>
> ---
>  kernel/ptrace.c | 12 +++++++-----
>  1 file changed, 7 insertions(+), 5 deletions(-)
> diff --git a/kernel/ptrace.c b/kernel/ptrace.c
> index cb9ddcc08119..b2fe800cae9a 100644
> --- a/kernel/ptrace.c
> +++ b/kernel/ptrace.c
> @@ -264,12 +264,14 @@ static int ptrace_check_attach(struct task_struct *child, bool ignore_state)
>  	return ret;
>  }
> -static int ptrace_has_cap(struct user_namespace *ns, unsigned int mode)
> +static int ptrace_has_cap(const struct cred *cred, struct user_namespace *ns,
> +			  unsigned int mode)
>  {
>  	if (mode & PTRACE_MODE_NOAUDIT)
> -		return has_ns_capability_noaudit(current, ns, CAP_SYS_PTRACE);
> +		return security_capable(cred, ns, CAP_SYS_PTRACE, CAP_OPT_NONE);
>  	else
> -		return has_ns_capability(current, ns, CAP_SYS_PTRACE);
> +		return security_capable(cred, ns, CAP_SYS_PTRACE,

Accidently switched those two lines. I sent a fixed version now!


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