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Subject[PATCH v3 1/7] capabilities: introduce CAP_SYS_PERFMON to kernel and user space

Introduce CAP_SYS_PERFMON capability devoted to secure system performance
monitoring and observability so that CAP_SYS_PERFMON would assist
CAP_SYS_ADMIN capability in its governing role for perf_events, i915_perf
and other subsystems of the kernel.

CAP_SYS_PERFMON intends to harden system security and integrity during
system performance monitoring and observability by decreasing attack surface
that is available to CAP_SYS_ADMIN privileged processes.

CAP_SYS_PERFMON intends to take over CAP_SYS_ADMIN credentials related to
system performance monitoring and observability and balance amount of
CAP_SYS_ADMIN credentials in accordance with the recommendations provided
in the man page for CAP_SYS_ADMIN [1]: "Note: this capability is overloaded;
see Notes to kernel developers, below."


Signed-off-by: Alexey Budankov <>
include/linux/capability.h | 1 +
include/uapi/linux/capability.h | 8 +++++++-
security/selinux/include/classmap.h | 4 ++--
3 files changed, 10 insertions(+), 3 deletions(-)

diff --git a/include/linux/capability.h b/include/linux/capability.h
index ecce0f43c73a..6342502c4c2a 100644
--- a/include/linux/capability.h
+++ b/include/linux/capability.h
@@ -251,6 +251,7 @@ extern bool privileged_wrt_inode_uidgid(struct user_namespace *ns, const struct
extern bool capable_wrt_inode_uidgid(const struct inode *inode, int cap);
extern bool file_ns_capable(const struct file *file, struct user_namespace *ns, int cap);
extern bool ptracer_capable(struct task_struct *tsk, struct user_namespace *ns);
+#define perfmon_capable() (capable(CAP_SYS_PERFMON) || capable(CAP_SYS_ADMIN))

/* audit system wants to get cap info from files as well */
extern int get_vfs_caps_from_disk(const struct dentry *dentry, struct cpu_vfs_cap_data *cpu_caps);
diff --git a/include/uapi/linux/capability.h b/include/uapi/linux/capability.h
index 240fdb9a60f6..98e03cc76c7c 100644
--- a/include/uapi/linux/capability.h
+++ b/include/uapi/linux/capability.h
@@ -366,8 +366,14 @@ struct vfs_ns_cap_data {

#define CAP_AUDIT_READ 37

+ * Allow system performance and observability privileged operations
+ * using perf_events, i915_perf and other kernel subsystems
+ */
+#define CAP_SYS_PERFMON 38


#define cap_valid(x) ((x) >= 0 && (x) <= CAP_LAST_CAP)

diff --git a/security/selinux/include/classmap.h b/security/selinux/include/classmap.h
index 7db24855e12d..bae602c623b0 100644
--- a/security/selinux/include/classmap.h
+++ b/security/selinux/include/classmap.h
@@ -27,9 +27,9 @@
"audit_control", "setfcap"

#define COMMON_CAP2_PERMS "mac_override", "mac_admin", "syslog", \
- "wake_alarm", "block_suspend", "audit_read"
+ "wake_alarm", "block_suspend", "audit_read", "sys_perfmon"

#error New capability defined, please update COMMON_CAP2_PERMS.

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