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Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH v4 0/8] KASLR kernel dump support

From: Laszlo Ersek
Subject: Re: [Qemu-devel] [PATCH v4 0/8] KASLR kernel dump support
Date: Fri, 14 Jul 2017 22:21:43 +0200
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:52.0) Gecko/20100101 Thunderbird/52.2.1

On 07/14/17 21:59, Michael S. Tsirkin wrote:
> On Fri, Jul 14, 2017 at 08:20:03PM +0200, Marc-André Lureau wrote:
>> Recent linux kernels enable KASLR to randomize phys/virt memory
>> addresses. This series aims to provide enough information in qemu
>> dumps so that crash utility can work with randomized kernel too (it
>> hasn't been tested on other archs than x86 though, help welcome).
>> The vmcoreinfo device is an emulated ACPI device that exposes a 4k
>> memory range to the guest to store various informations useful to
>> debug the guest OS. (it is greatly inspired by the VMGENID device
>> implementation). The version field with value 0 is meant to give
>> paddr/size of the VMCOREINFO ELF PT_NOTE, other values can be used for
>> different purposes or OSes. (note: some wanted to see pvpanic somehow
>> merged with this device, I have no clear idea how to do that, nor do I
>> think this is a good idea since the devices are quite different, used
>> at different time for different purposes. And it can be done as a
>> future iteration if it is appropriate, feel free to send patches)
> First, I think you underestimate the difficulty of maintaining
> compatibility.
> Second, this seems racy - how do you know when is guest done writing out
> the data?

What data exactly?

The guest kernel module points the fields in the "vmcoreinfo page" to
the then-existent vmcoreinfo ELF note. At that point, the ELF note is

If we catch the guest with a dump request while the kernel module is
setting up the fields (i.e., the fields are not consistent), then we'll
catch that in our sanity checks, and the note won't be extracted. This
is no different from the case when you simply dump the guest RAM before
the module got invoked.

> Given you have very little data to export (PA, size - do
> you even need size?)

Yes, it tells us in advance how much memory to allocate before we copy
out the vmcoreinfo ELF note (and we enforce a sanity limit on the size).

> - how about just using an ACPI method do it,

Do what exactly?

> instead of exporting a physical addess and storing address there.  This
> way you can add more methods as you add functionality.

I'm not saying this is a bad idea (especially because I don't fully
understand your point), but I will say that I'm quite sad that you are
sending Marc-André back to the drawing board after he posted v4 -- also
invalidating my review efforts. :/


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