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SubjectRe: [PATCH RFC v3] random: getrandom(2): optionally block when CRNG is uninitialized
On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 12:55:39PM +0200, Ahmed S. Darwish wrote:
> On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 12:40:27PM +0200, Willy Tarreau wrote:
> > On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 12:02:01PM +0200, Ahmed S. Darwish wrote:
> > > On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 11:30:57AM +0200, Willy Tarreau wrote:
> > > > On Sun, Sep 15, 2019 at 10:59:07AM +0200, Lennart Poettering wrote:
> [...]
> > > > > If Linux lets all that stuff run with awful entropy then
> > > > > you pretend things where secure while they actually aren't. It's much
> > > > > better to fail loudly in that case, I am sure.
> > > >
> > > > This is precisely what this change permits : fail instead of block
> > > > by default, and let applications decide based on the use case.
> > > >
> > >
> > > Unfortunately, not exactly.
> > >
> > > Linus didn't want getrandom to return an error code / "to fail" in
> > > that case, but to silently return CRNG-uninitialized /dev/urandom
> > > data, to avoid user-space even working around the error code through
> > > busy-loops.
> >
> > But with this EINVAL you have the information that it only filled
> > the buffer with whatever it could, right ? At least that was the
> > last point I manage to catch in the discussion. Otherwise if it's
> > totally silent, I fear that it will reintroduce the problem in a
> > different form (i.e. libc will say "our randoms are not reliable
> > anymore, let us work around this and produce blocking, solid randoms
> > again to help all our users").
> >
>
> V1 of the patch I posted did indeed return -EINVAL. Linus then
> suggested that this might make still some user-space act smart and
> just busy-loop around that, basically blocking the boot again:
>
> https://lkml.kernel.org/r/CAHk-=wiB0e_uGpidYHf+dV4eeT+XmG-+rQBx=JJ110R48QFFWw@mail.gmail.com
> https://lkml.kernel.org/r/CAHk-=whSbo=dBiqozLoa6TFmMgbeB8d9krXXvXBKtpRWkG0rMQ@mail.gmail.com
>
> So it was then requested to actually return what /dev/urandom would
> return, so that user-space has no way whatsoever in knowing if
> getrandom has failed. Then, it's the job of system integratos / BSP
> builders to fix the inspect the big fat WARN on the kernel and fix
> that.

Then I was indeed a bit confused in the middle of the discussion as
I didn't understand exactly this, thanks for the clarifying :-)

But does it still block when called with GRND_RANDOM ? If so I guess
I'm fine as it translates exactly the previous behavior of random vs
urandom, and that GRND_NONBLOCK allows the application to fall back
to reliable sources if needed (typically human interactions).

Thanks,
Willy

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