Re: [PATCH 0/3] Enable namespaced file capabilities

From: Serge E. Hallyn
Date: Thu Jun 22 2017 - 17:09:50 EST

Quoting Casey Schaufler (casey@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx):
> On 6/22/2017 1:12 PM, Stefan Berger wrote:
> > On 06/22/2017 03:59 PM, Casey Schaufler wrote:
> >> On 6/22/2017 11:59 AM, Stefan Berger wrote:
> >>> This series of patches primary goal is to enable file capabilities
> >>> in user namespaces without affecting the file capabilities that are
> >>> effective on the host. This is to prevent that any unprivileged user
> >>> on the host maps his own uid to root in a private namespace, writes
> >>> the xattr, and executes the file with privilege on the host.
> >>>
> >>> We achieve this goal by writing extended attributes with a different
> >>> name when a user namespace is used. If for example the root user
> >>> in a user namespace writes the security.capability xattr, the name
> >>> of the xattr that is actually written is encoded as
> >>> security.capability@uid=1000 for root mapped to uid 1000 on the host.
> >> You need to identify the instance of the user namespace for
> >> this to work right on a system with multiple user namespaces.
> >> If I have a shared filesystem mounted in two different user
> >> namespaces a change by one will affect the other.
> >
> > Two different user namespaces with different uid mappings will not affect each other.
> But two namespaces with the same uid mapping will, and I
> don't think this meets the principle of least astonishment.

It does. If you have one filesystem shared among multiple
containers, then it needs to be either read-only, or you
need to know what you're doing.

> I also object to associating capabilities with UIDs. The
> whole point of capabilities is to disassociate UID 0 from
> privilege. What you've done is explicitly associate a UID
> with the ability to have privilege. That's an architectural
> regression.

IMO this is looking at it the wrong way. From inside the container's
viewpoint, the capabilities are not associated with a uid. Any
task, regardles off uid, in the container, which executes the file,
gets the privilege. IMO that satisfies the intent of file capabilities.