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Date: Mon, 09 Nov 2015 17:20:24 -0500
Subject: Re: Binary blobs

On Mon, 09 Nov 2015 22:59:31 +0100, HacKurx said:
> The binary blobs are a potential for undetectable or irreparable
> security flaws (Andrews Jeremy "Interview: Theo de Raadt", KernelTrap).
> What is your point of view? Linux-libre kernel is the only reliable
> basis?

Closed source is by definition not easily examined for security issues (though
once you get to monsters like LibreOffice or Firefox, even open source code
is difficult to audit).

The problem is that at the current time, not all software is easily opened. For
example, the single biggest reason (among several) that NVidia has a binary
blob driver is that (simplifying *drastically* here) when SGI's graphics
division imploded, NVidia got all the engineers - but Microsoft snarfed up a
bunch of patents connected to OpenGL.  So NVidia had no realistic choice but to
license the intellectual property from Microsoft.

So out in the real world, you have to look at your threat model, and decide
how paranoid you are.  (Personally, I'd be more worried about the open-sourced
Firefox code than I would the NVidia binary blob.  The former has got a *huge*
attack surface compared to the latter....)

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