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Date: Thu, 30 Mar 2017 10:34:01 +0100
From: Ian Campbell <>
To: Kees Cook <>,
Cc: Mark Rutland <>, Andy Lutomirski <>, 
 Hoeun Ryu <>, PaX Team <>, Emese
 Revfy <>,  Russell King <>,,,
Subject: Re: [RFC v2][PATCH 02/11] lkdtm: add test for
 rare_write() infrastructure

On Wed, 2017-03-29 at 11:15 -0700, Kees Cook wrote:
> diff --git a/drivers/misc/lkdtm_perms.c b/drivers/misc/lkdtm_perms.c
> index c7635a79341f..8fbadfa4cc34 100644
> --- a/drivers/misc/lkdtm_perms.c
> +++ b/drivers/misc/lkdtm_perms.c
> [...]
> +/* This is marked __wr_rare, so it should ultimately be .rodata. */
> +static unsigned long wr_rare __wr_rare = 0xAA66AA66;
> [...]
> +void lkdtm_WRITE_RARE_WRITE(void)
> +{
> +	/* Explicitly cast away "const" for the test. */

wr_rare isn't actually declared const above though? I don't think
__wr_rare includes a const, apologies if I missed it.

OOI, if wr_rare _were_ const then can the compiler optimise the a pair
of reads spanning the rare_write? i.e. adding const to the declaration
above to get:

    static const unsigned long wr_rare __wr_rare = 0xAA66AA66;
x = wr_read;
rare_write(x, 0xf000baaa);
y = wr_read;

Is it possible that x == y == 0xaa66aa66 because gcc realises the x and
y came from the same const location? Have I missed a clobber somewhere
(I can't actually find a definition of __arch_rare_write_memcpy in this
series so maybe it's there), or is such code expected to always cast
away the const first?

I suppose such constructs are rare in practice in the sorts of places
where rare_write is appropriate, but with aggressive inlining it could
occur as an unexpected trap for the unwary perhaps.


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