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SubjectRe: [PATCH v9 0/7] KVM PCIe/MSI passthrough on ARM/ARM64: kernel part 3/3: vfio changes
> On Wed, 8 Jun 2016 10:29:35 +0200
> Auger Eric <> wrote:
>> Dear all,
>> Le 20/05/2016 à 18:01, Eric Auger a écrit :
>>> Alex, Robin,
>>> While my 3 part series primarily addresses the problematic of mapping
>>> MSI doorbells into arm-smmu, it fails in :
>>> 1) determining whether the MSI controller is downstream or upstream to
>>> the IOMMU,
>>> => indicates whether the MSI doorbell must be mapped
>>> => participates in the decision about 2)
>>> 2) determining whether it is safe to assign a PCIe device.
>>> I think we share this understanding with Robin. All above of course
>>> stands for ARM.
>>> I get stuck with those 2 issues and I have few questions about iommu
>>> group setup, PCIe, iommu dt/ACPI description. I would be grateful to you
>>> if you could answer part of those questions and advise about the
>>> strategy to fix those.
>> gentle reminder about the questions below; hope I did not miss any reply.
>> If anybody has some time to spent on this topic...
>>> Best Regards
>>> Eric
>>> 1) Robin, you pointed some host controllers which also are MSI
>>> controllers
>>> ( In
>>> that case MSIs never reach the IOMMU. I failed in finding anything about
>>> MSIs in PCIe ACS spec. What should be the iommu groups in that
>>> situation. Isn't the upstreamed code able to see some DMA transfers are
>>> not properly isolated and alias devices in the same group? According to
>>> your security warning, Alex, I would think the code does not recognize
>>> it, can you confirm please?
>> my current understanding is end points would be in separate groups (assuming
>> ACS support) although MSI controller frame is not properly protected.
> We don't currently consider MSI differently from other DMA and we don't
> currently have any sort of concept of a device within the intermediate
> fabric as being a DMA target. We expect fabric devices to only be
> transaction routers. We use ACS to determine whether there's any
> possibility of DMA being redirected before it reaches the IOMMU, but it
> seems that a DMA being consumed by an interrupt controller before it
> reaches the IOMMU would be another cause for an isolation breach.
OK thank you for the confirmation
>>> 2) can other PCIe components be MSI controllers?
> I'm not even entirely sure what this means. Would a DMA write from an
> endpoint target the MMIO space of an intermediate, fabric device?
With the example provided by Robin we have a host controller acting as
an MSI controller. I wondered whether we could have some other fabric
devices (downstream to the host controller in PCIe terminology) also
likely to act as MSI controllers.
>>> 3) Am I obliged to consider arbitrary topologies where an MSI controller
>>> stands between the PCIe host and the iommu? in the PCIe space or
>>> platform space? If this only relates to PCIe couldn' I check if an MSI
>>> controller exists in the PCIe tree?
>> In my last series, I consider the assignment of platform device unsafe as
>> soon as there is a GICv2m. This is a change in the user experience compared to
>> what we have before.
> If the MSI controller is downstream of our DMA translation, it doesn't
> seem like we have much choice but to mark it unsafe. The endpoint is
> fully able to attempt to exploit it.
OK the orginal question was related to non PCIe topologies:

- we know some PCIe fabric topologies where the PCIe host controller
implements MSI controller.
- Shall we be prepared to address the same kind of issues with platform
MSI controllers. Are there some SOCs where we would put an unsafe MSI
platform controller before IOMMU translation. Or do we consider it is a
platform topology we don't support for assignment?

>>> 4) Robin suggested in a private thread to enumerate through a list of
>>> "registered" doorbells and if any belongs to an unsafe MSI controller,
>>> consider the assignment is unsafe. This would be a first step before
>>> doing something more complex. Alex, would that be acceptable to you for
>>> issue #2?
>> I implemented this technique in my last series waiting for more discussion
>> on 4, 5.
> Seems sufficient. I don't mind taking a broad swing versus all the
> extra complexity of defining which devices are safe vs unsafe.
>>> 5) About issue #1: don't we miss tools in dt/ACPI to describe the
>>> location of the iommu on ARM? This is not needed on x86 because
>>> irq_remapping and IOMMU are at the same place but my understanding is
>>> that it is on ARM where
>>> - there is no connection between the MSI controller - which implements
>>> irq remapping - and the iommu
>>> - MSI are conveyed on the same address space as standard memory
>>> transactions.
> It seems pretty dubious to me to have fixed address, unprotected MSI
> controllers sitting in the DMA space of a device before IOMMU
> translation.
same for me ;-)
Seems like you not only need to mark interrupts as
> unsafe, but exclude the address space of the MSI controller from the
> available IOVA space to the user.
I currently do not see how to achieve that. The guest can program the
assigned device DMA target address with the MSI frame PA. there is no
IOMMU to protect. How can we make it if we don't trap on DMA programming?
>>> 6) can't we live with iommu/MSI controller respective location uncertainty?
>>> - in my current series, with the above Xilinx MSI controller, I would
>>> see there is an arm-smmu requiring mapping behind the PCI host, would
>>> query the characteristics of the MSI doorbell (not implemented by that
>>> controller), so no mapping would be done. So it would work I think.
>>> - However in case we have this topology: PCIe host -> MSI controller
>>> generally used behind an IOMMU (so registering a doorbell) -> IOMMU,
>>> this wouldn't work since the doorbell would be mapped.
> I'm a little confused which direction "behind" is here, but it seems
> like any time the MSI controller lives in the DMA address space of the
> endpoint, both interfering with the available IOVA space to the user
> and potentially an attack vector for the user, we need to call it out
> as unsafe. Maybe some of them are for exclusive use of the device and
> the attack vector is relatively contained, but they still affect the
> IOVA space of the user. Such a configuration might be safe, but as I
> said I'm not opposed to being pretty liberal in applying the unsafe
> requirement if the platform has done something unfriendly. Thanks,
OK that's clear.

Thank you for your feedbacks

Best Regards

> Alex

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