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SubjectRe: /etc/mtab and per-process namespaces
On Sat, 2005-10-29 at 03:16, Rob Landley wrote:
> On Friday 28 October 2005 19:06, Ram Pai wrote:
> > > Mike's comments are very apt. The current situation with mount
> > > support is untenable. Even working on private development machines it
> > > gets confusing as to what is or is not mounted in various
> > > shells/processes. The basic infra-structure is there with process
> > > specific mount information (/proc/self/mounts) but mount and friends
> > > are a bit problematic with respect to supporting this.
> I fairly extensively rewrote busybox mount, and one of my goals was doing the
> best job with /proc/mounts (only) support that I could. In some ways,
> busybox's mount is better (such as the fact it can autodetect when you're
> trying to mount a file and figure out it needs -o loop without being told).
> If you want try the busybox version of mount/losetup/umount, I hope it does
> what you want and am willing to fix it if it doesn't. (P.S. To
> use /proc/mounts either configure it without /etc/mtab support or
> symlink /etc/mtab to /proc/mounts.)
> > > I'm working on a namespace toolkit to address these issues. I've got
> > > a pretty basic tool, similar to sudo, which allows spawning processes
> > > with a protected namespace. I'm adding a configuration system which
> > > allow systems administrators to define a setup of bind mounts which
> > > are automatically executed before the user is given their shell. I'm
> > > also working up a PAM account module to go along with this. I would
> > > certainly be open to suggestions as to what else people would consider
> > > useful in such a toolkit.
> > >
> > > I've been pondering the best way to take on the mount problem.
> > > Current mount binaries seem to fall back to /proc/mounts if /etc/mtab
> > > is not present. All bets are off of course if the mount binary is
> > > used for the bind mount since a new /etc/mtab is created.
> Have you tried having /etc/mtab be a symlink to /proc/mounts?
> > > I'm willing to whack on the mount binary a bit as part of this. The
> > > obvious solution is to teach mount to act differently if it is running
> > > in a private namespace. If anybody knows of a good way to detect this
> > > I would be interested in knowing that. In newns (the namespace sudo
> > > tool) I'm setting an environment variable for mount to detect on but a
> > > system level approach would be more generic.
> >
> > actually there is a hackish way for a process to figure out if it is in
> > a different namespace than the system namespace.
> >
> > ls /proc/1/root
> >
> > in a system namespace it will allow you to see the content.
> > And in a per-process-namespace it will fail with permission denied.
> >
> > But I think we should figure out a cleaner way to decipher this,
> > and that would start with clearly defining the requirements, I think.
> The big thing I've never figured out how to do is make umount -a work in the
> presence of multiple namespaces. (Should it just umount what it sees? I
> don't know how to umount everything because I can't find everything...)

Yes you won't find everything, since some of them are in a different
namespaces. Instead unmount whatever you see. Or use /proc/mounts
to unmount whatever is there in its namespace.


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