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SubjectRe: Why add the general notification queue and its sources

On Thu, Sep 5, 2019 at 4:39 PM Linus Torvalds
<> wrote:
> That is *way* too specific to make for any kind of generic
> notification mechanism.
Well from my standpoint, I just don't want to have to poll... I don't
have a strong opinion
about how it looks architecturally to reach that goal.

Ideally, at a higher level, I want the userspace api that gnome uses
to be something

err = krb5_cc_watch (ctx, ccache, (krb5_cc_change_fct) on_cc_change ,

then a watch_fd would get handed back and caller could poll on it. if
it woke up poll(),
caller would do

krb5_cc_watch_update (ctx, ccache, watch_fd)

or so and it would trigger on_cc_change to get called (or something like that).

If under the hood, fd comes from opening /dev/watch_queue, and
krb5_cc_watch_update reads from some mmap'ed buffer to decide whether
or not to call on_cc_change, that's fine with me.

If under the hood, fd comes from a pipe fd returned from some ioctl or syscall,
and krb5_cc_watch_update reads messages directly from that fd to decide
whether or not to call on_cc_change, that's fine with me. too.

it could be an eventfd too, or whatever, too, just as long as its
something I can add
to poll() and don't have to intermittently poll ... :-)

> Also, what is the security model here? Open a special character
> device, and you get access to random notifications from random
> sources?
I guess dhowells answered this...

> And why would you do a broken big-key thing in the kernel in the first
> place? Why don't you just have a kernel key to indirectly encrypt
> using a key and "additional user space data". The kernel should simply
> not take care of insane 1MB keys.
🤷 dunno. I assume you're referencing the discussions from comment 0
on that 2013 bug. I wasn't involved in those discussions, I just chimed in
after they happened trying to avoid having to add polling :-)

I have no idea why a ticket would get that large. I assume it only is in weird
edge cases.

Anyway, gnome treats the tickets as opaque blobs. it doesn't do anything
with them other than tell the user when they need to get refreshed...

all the actual key manipulation happens from krb5 libraries.

of course, one advantage of having the tickets kernel side is nfs could
in theory access them directly, rather than up calling back to userspace...


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