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SubjectRe: [PATCH v29 00/20] Intel SGX foundations
On Wed, Apr 29, 2020 at 8:30 AM Sean Christopherson
<sean.j.christopherson@intel.com> wrote:
>
> On Sun, Apr 26, 2020 at 11:57:53AM -0500, Dr. Greg wrote:
> > In closing, it is important to note that the proposed SGX driver is
> > not available as a module. This effectively excludes any alternative
> > implementations of the driver without replacement of the kernel at
> > large.
>
> No it doesn't. The SGX subsytem won't allocate EPC pages unless userspace
> creates an enclave, i.e. preventing unprivileged userspace from accessing
> /dev/sgx/enclave will allow loading an alternative out-of-tree SGX module.
> Yes, SGX sanitizes the EPC on boot, but that's arguably a good thing for
> out-of-tree modules.
>
> And if you want to get crafty and squash in-kernel SGX altogether, boot
> with "clearcpuid=<SGX_LC>" and/or "clearcpuid=<SGX>" to disable in-kernel
> support entirely. SGX won't be correctly enumerated in /proc/cpuinfo
> relative to the existence of an out-of-tree module, but that seems like a
> very minor issue if you're running with a completely different SGX driver.
>
> > It also means that any platform, with SGX hardware support,
> > running a kernel with this driver, has the potential for the
> > security/privacy issues noted above.
>
> Unless I'm mistaken, /dev/sgx is root-only by default. There are far
> scarier mechanisms available to root for hosing the system.
>
> > If key based policy management is not allowed, then the driver needs
> > to be re-architected to have modular support so that alternative
> > implementations or the absence of any driver support are at least
> > tenable.
>
> As above, using an alternative implementation is teneble, albeit a bit
> kludgy.

It is worth noting that, if someone actualy does this, and a future
kernel patch breaks it, the upstream developers are unlikely to
apologize or even feel particularly bad. See, for example, the
current situation with VirtualBox.

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