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SubjectRe: [PATCH v5 0/3] init: add support to directly boot to a mapped device
On Fri, Feb 26 2016 at  2:59pm -0500,
Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org> wrote:

> On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 11:21 AM, Mike Snitzer <snitzer@redhat.com> wrote:
> > On Fri, Feb 26 2016 at 1:52pm -0500,
> > Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org> wrote:
> >
> >> On Fri, Feb 26, 2016 at 8:53 AM, Mike Snitzer <snitzer@redhat.com> wrote:
> >> > On Mon, Feb 22 2016 at 1:55pm -0500,
> >> > Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org> wrote:
> >> >
> >> >> On Sun, Feb 21, 2016 at 2:08 PM, Alasdair G Kergon <agk@redhat.com> wrote:
> >> >> > On Sat, Feb 20, 2016 at 10:13:49AM -0800, Kees Cook wrote:
> >> >> >> This is a resurrection of a patch series from a few years back, first
> >> >> >> brought to the dm maintainers in 2010. It creates a way to define dm
> >> >> >> devices on the kernel command line for systems that do not use an
> >> >> >> initramfs, or otherwise need a dm running before init starts.
> >> >> >>
> >> >> >> This has been used by Chrome OS for several years, and now by Brillo
> >> >> >> (and likely Android soon).
> >> >> >>
> >> >> >> The last version was v4:
> >> >> >> https://patchwork.kernel.org/patch/104860/
> >> >> >> https://patchwork.kernel.org/patch/104861/
> >> >> >
> >> >> > Inconsistencies in the terminology here can be sorted out during review,
> >> >> > and I see that you've taken on board some of my review comments from
> >> >> > 2010, but what are your responses to the rest of them?
> >> >>
> >> >> Ah, sorry, the threads I could find were incomplete, so I wasn't able
> >> >> to find those comments that were made to Will's 2010 submission. In
> >> >> some of the cleanups I did I was very confused about "target" vs
> >> >> "table", and tried to fix that. Regardless, I'm open to fixing
> >> >> whatever is needed. :)
> >> >>
> >> >> Thanks for looking at this again!
> >> >
> >> > This work isn't going to fly as is. I appreciate the effort and the
> >> > goal (without understanding _why_) but: you're open-coding, duplicating
> >> > and/or reinventing way too much in do_mounts_dm.c
> >> >
> >> > 1) You first need to answer: _why_ is using a proper initramfs not
> >> > viable? A very simple initramfs that issues dmsetup commands, etc,
> >> > isn't so daunting is it? Why is it so important for the kernel to
> >> > natively provide a dmsetup interface? Chrome, Android, etc cannot use
> >> > initramfs?
> >>
> >> That is correct: Chrome OS does not (and won't) use an initramfs. This
> >> is mainly for reasons of boot speed, verified boot block size, and
> >> maybe some other things I don't remember.
> >
> > Not sure what "verified boot block size" means but...
>
> Chrome OS uses coreboot as its boot firmware and a coreboot module
> known as "depthcharge" for doing the crypto-verification and booting
> of the Chrome OS system. This is the static root of trust Chrome OS
> extends from its read-only boot firmware through to the kernel it
> loads and the dm-verity partition it mounts as the read-only root
> filesystem. To keep the boot speed fast and the kernel size small,
> there is no initramfs.
>
> > Sorry I really don't buy that using a custom initramfs would be the
> > source of slow boot. initramfs is _not_ this hugely inefficient
> > mechanism you'd have us believe.
>
> I didn't say it was hugely inefficient, but for Chrome OS it's not
> needed, and was a measurable source of boot time. We just got rid of
> it since it was redundant. I can't change that design decision; I'm
> just here to help bring the dm= boot support upstream. :)
>
> > And if that is the justification for this early boot dm= support then
> > the Chrome OS project/team will have to continue to carry the hack
> > locally. It has no place upstream. But I'm open to revisiting this if
> > it can be implemented in a very cheap way.
>
> Yeah, I'm open to whatever suggestions you have.
>
> >> > 2) If you are able to adequately justify the need for dm=:
> >> > I'd much rather the dm= kernel commandline be a simple series of
> >> > comma-delimited dmsetup-like commands.
> >> >
> >> > You'd handle each command with extremely basic parsing:
> >> > <dm_ioctl_cmd> <args> [, <dm_ioctl_cmd> <args>]
> >> > (inventing a special token to denote <newline>, to support tables with
> >> > multiple entries, rather than relying on commas and counts, etc)
> >>
> >> Sure, changing the syntax is fine by me. We'd need to plumb access to
> >> the ioctl interface, though.
> >
> > I was hoping to avoid any extra hacks but yes... seems you'd need a new
> > API to issue the equivalent of a DM ioctl programatically. Hopefully
> > it'd be quite a small wrapper.
>
> Seems like it shouldn't be too bad.

OK, I'm waiting on you to give it a shot. I'll do my best to help.

Thanks,
Mike

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