Re: [PATCH V4 3/8] namespaces: expose ns instance serial numbers in proc

From: Nicolas Dichtel
Date: Mon Aug 25 2014 - 09:30:57 EST

Le 24/08/2014 19:52, Andy Lutomirski a écrit :
On Thu, Aug 21, 2014 at 6:58 PM, Richard Guy Briggs <rgb@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
On 14/08/21, Andy Lutomirski wrote:
On Aug 20, 2014 8:12 PM, "Richard Guy Briggs" <rgb@xxxxxxxxxx> wrote:
Expose the namespace instace serial numbers in the proc filesystem at
/proc/<pid>/ns/<ns>_snum. The link text gives the serial number in hex.

What's the use case?

I understand the utility of giving unique numbers to the audit code,
but I don't think this part is necessary for that, and I'd like to
understand what else will use this before committing to a duplicative
API like this.

How does a container manager get those numbers? It could provoke a task
to cause an audit event that emits a NS_INFO message, or it could run a
task in that container to report its namespace serial numbers directly
from its /proc mount.

Why does a container manager need them? Is there any reason that
keeping them entirely contained within the audit system would be a

The discussion in this thread touches on the use cases:

Note that this API is thoroughly incompatible with CRIU. If we do
this, someone will ask for a namespace number namespace, and that way
lies madness.

I had a very brief look at CRIU, but not enough to understand the issue.
Others have hinted at this problem.

Do you have a suggestion of a different approach that would be
compatible with CRIU?

I'd originally considered some sort of UUID that would be globally
unique, but that would be very hard to devise or guarantee, and besides,
namespaces aren't only used by containers and could be shared in other
ways. Tracking the usage and migration of namespaces should be the task
of an upper layer.

CRIU wants to save the complete state of a namespace and then restore
it. For that to work, any information exposed to things in the
namespace *cannot* be globally unique or unique per boot, since CRIU
needs to arrange for that information to match whatever it was when
CRIU saved it.
How are ifindex of network devices managed? These ifindexes are unique per boot,
thus can change depending on the order in which netdev are created.
These ifindexes are unique per boot and exposed to userspace ...

Also, I think that code running in a namespace has no business even
knowing a unique identity of that namespace from the perspective of
the host.
Another scenario is when you have virtual network devices across two netns. You
need to identify the peer netns to have a netlink message which is fully interpretable by the userspace.

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