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Date: Thu, 10 Oct 2013 09:25:24 +1100
From: Ryan Mallon <>
To: Joe Perches <>
CC: Andrew Morton <>,, 
 Jiri Kosina <>,, 
 Dan Rosenberg <>,
 Kees Cook <>, 
 Alexander Viro <>,
 "Eric W. Biederman" <>, 
 George Spelvin <>,
 "" <>,
 "" <>
Subject: Re: [PATCH v3] vsprintf: Check real user/group id for %pK

On 10/10/13 09:14, Joe Perches wrote:
> On Thu, 2013-10-10 at 09:04 +1100, Ryan Mallon wrote:
>> On 10/10/13 09:00, Joe Perches wrote:
> []
>>> Move the interrupt tests and pK-error printk
>>> into case 1:
>>> It's the only case where CAP_SYSLOG needs to be
>>> tested so it doesn't need to be above the switch.
>> Like I said, I think it is useful to do the pK-error check anyway. It is
>> checking for internal kernel bugs, since if 'pK-error' ever gets
>> printed, then some kernel code is doing the wrong thing.
> I think you don't quite understand how kptr_restrict works.
> If it's 0, then the ptr value is always emitted naturally.
> if it's 2, then the ptr value is always emitted as 0.

I understand this.

>> Therefore, I
>> think it is useful to print it always (I would argue it even makes sense
>> when kptr_restrict=0).
> How?  Maybe it's me that doesn't quite understand.

This check:

	if (kptr_restrict && (in_irq() || in_serving_softirq() ||
			      in_nmi())) {

Is making sure that you don't have kernel code doing something like this:

	irqreturn_t some_irq_handler(int irq, void *data)
		struct seq_file *seq = to_seq(data);

		seq_printf(seq, "value = %pK\n");
		return IRQ_HANDLED;

Because that obviously won't work when kptr_restrict=1 (because the
CAP_SYSLOG check is meaningless). However, the code is broken regardless
of the kptr_restrict value. Since the default value of kptr_restrict is
0, this kind of bug can go over-looked because the seq file will print
the pointer value correctly when kptr_restrict=0, and it will correctly
print 0's when kptr_restrict=2, but it will print 'pK-error' when
kptr_restrict=1. Doing the check in all cases makes it more likely that
bugs like this get found. In fact, doing something like:

	if (WARN_ON(in_irq() || in_serving_softirq() || in_nmi())) {

Might be better, since that will print a stack-trace showing where the
offending vsprintf is.


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