Openwall GNU/*/Linux - a small security-enhanced Linux distro for servers
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Date: Fri, 5 May 2017 10:23:50 +0200
From: Daniel Gruss <daniel.gruss@...k.tugraz.at>
To: Thomas Garnier <thgarnie@...gle.com>
CC: kernel list <linux-kernel@...r.kernel.org>,
        Kernel Hardening
	<kernel-hardening@...ts.openwall.com>,
        "clementine.maurice@...k.tugraz.at"
	<clementine.maurice@...k.tugraz.at>,
        "moritz.lipp@...k.tugraz.at"
	<moritz.lipp@...k.tugraz.at>,
        Michael Schwarz
	<michael.schwarz@...k.tugraz.at>,
        Richard Fellner
	<richard.fellner@...dent.tugraz.at>,
        "Kirill A. Shutemov"
	<kirill.shutemov@...ux.intel.com>,
        Ingo Molnar <mingo@...nel.org>,
        "anders.fogh@...ta-adan.de" <anders.fogh@...ta-adan.de>
Subject: Re: [RFC, PATCH] x86_64: KAISER - do not map
 kernel in user mode

On 04.05.2017 17:28, Thomas Garnier wrote:
> Please read the documentation on submitting patches [1] and coding style [2].

I will have a closer look at that.

>  - How this approach prevent the hardware attacks you mentioned? You
> still have to keep a part of _text in the pagetable and an attacker
> could discover it no? (and deduce the kernel base address).

These parts are moved to a different section (.user_mapped) which is at 
a possibly predictable location - the location of the randomized parts 
of the kernel is independent of the location of .user_mapped.
The code/data footprint for .user_mapped is quite small, helping to 
reduce or eliminate the attack surface...

> You also need to make it clear that btb attacks are still possible.

By just increasing the KASLR randomization range, btb attacks can be 
mitigated (for free).

>  - What is the perf impact?

It will vary for different machines. We have promising results (<1%) for 
an i7-6700K with representative benchmarks. However, for older systems 
or for workloads with a lot of pressure on some TLB levels, the 
performance may be much worse.

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