Re: [PATCH v9 01/42] mm: Rename arch pte_mkwrite()'s to pte_mkwrite_novma()

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On 13.06.23 02:10, Rick Edgecombe wrote:
The x86 Shadow stack feature includes a new type of memory called shadow
stack. This shadow stack memory has some unusual properties, which requires
some core mm changes to function properly.

One of these unusual properties is that shadow stack memory is writable,
but only in limited ways. These limits are applied via a specific PTE
bit combination. Nevertheless, the memory is writable, and core mm code
will need to apply the writable permissions in the typical paths that
call pte_mkwrite(). Future patches will make pte_mkwrite() take a VMA, so
that the x86 implementation of it can know whether to create regular
writable memory or shadow stack memory.

But there are a couple of challenges to this. Modifying the signatures of
each arch pte_mkwrite() implementation would be error prone because some
are generated with macros and would need to be re-implemented. Also, some
pte_mkwrite() callers operate on kernel memory without a VMA.

So this can be done in a three step process. First pte_mkwrite() can be
renamed to pte_mkwrite_novma() in each arch, with a generic pte_mkwrite()
added that just calls pte_mkwrite_novma(). Next callers without a VMA can
be moved to pte_mkwrite_novma(). And lastly, pte_mkwrite() and all callers
can be changed to take/pass a VMA.

Start the process by renaming pte_mkwrite() to pte_mkwrite_novma() and
adding the pte_mkwrite() wrapper in linux/pgtable.h. Apply the same
pattern for pmd_mkwrite(). Since not all archs have a pmd_mkwrite_novma(),
create a new arch config HAS_HUGE_PAGE that can be used to tell if
pmd_mkwrite() should be defined. Otherwise in the !HAS_HUGE_PAGE cases the
compiler would not be able to find pmd_mkwrite_novma().

No functional change.

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Suggested-by: Linus Torvalds <torvalds@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
Signed-off-by: Rick Edgecombe <rick.p.edgecombe@xxxxxxxxx>
Hi Non-x86 Arch’s,

x86 has a feature that allows for the creation of a special type of
writable memory (shadow stack) that is only writable in limited specific
ways. Previously, changes were proposed to core MM code to teach it to
decide when to create normally writable memory or the special shadow stack
writable memory, but David Hildenbrand suggested[0] to change
pXX_mkwrite() to take a VMA, so awareness of shadow stack memory can be
moved into x86 code. Later Linus suggested a less error-prone way[1] to go
about this after the first attempt had a bug.

Since pXX_mkwrite() is defined in every arch, it requires some tree-wide
changes. So that is why you are seeing some patches out of a big x86
series pop up in your arch mailing list. There is no functional change.
After this refactor, the shadow stack series goes on to use the arch
helpers to push arch memory details inside arch/x86 and other arch's
with upcoming shadow stack features.

Testing was just 0-day build testing.

Hopefully that is enough context. Thanks!


Acked-by: David Hildenbrand <david@xxxxxxxxxx>


David / dhildenb

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