Re: [PATCH] exit: PR_SET_ANCHOR for marking processes as reapersfor child processes

From: Roland McGrath
Date: Thu Mar 04 2010 - 17:14:51 EST

> Security. This is beyond my understanding, hopefully the cc'ed
> experts can help.

There are a few different aspects of behavior change to think about.

1. Who can get a SIGCHLD and wait result they weren't expecting.
2. Who sees some PID for getppid() when they are expecting 1.
3. What ps shows.

When I start thinking through what might be security issues, they are
almost all #1 questions. There is a hairy nest of many variations of #1
questions. The #2 question is pretty simple, but it also could be an issue
for security when setuid is involved (or just correctness for any

My impression is that #3 is the only actual motivation for this feature.
So perhaps we should consider an approach that leaves the rest of the
semantics alone and only affects that.

Lennart, am I right that this is all you are looking for? Does it even
matter to you that this change the PPID that ps groks today? How about if
it's just an entirely new kind of assocation that ps et al can learn to
display, and not even the traditional PPID field changes?

> To me, it looks more natural if PR_SET_ANCHOR marks the whole process as
> a local reaper, not only the thread which called PR_SET_ANCHOR.

Agreed. It could probably be a bit in signal_struct.flags,
which also means no memory cost for adding the feature.

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