[PATCH] objtool: Fix object file corruption

From: Josh Poimboeuf
Date: Fri Sep 15 2017 - 03:17:28 EST

Arnd Bergmann reported that a randconfig build was failing with the
following link error:

built-in.o: member arch/x86/kernel/time.o in archive is not an object

It turns out the link failed because the time.o file had been corrupted
by objtool:

nm: arch/x86/kernel/time.o: File format not recognized

In certain rare cases, when a .o file's ORC table is very small, the
.data section size doesn't change because it's page aligned. Because
all the existing sections haven't changed size, libelf doesn't detect
any section header changes, and so it doesn't update the section header
table properly. Instead it writes junk in the section header entries
for the new ORC sections.

Make sure libelf properly updates the section header table by setting
the ELF_F_DIRTY flag in the top level elf struct.

Reported-by: Arnd Bergmann <arnd@xxxxxxxx>
Fixes: 627fce14809b ("objtool: Add ORC unwind table generation")
Signed-off-by: Josh Poimboeuf <jpoimboe@xxxxxxxxxx>
tools/objtool/elf.c | 7 ++++++-
1 file changed, 6 insertions(+), 1 deletion(-)

diff --git a/tools/objtool/elf.c b/tools/objtool/elf.c
index 6e9f980a7d26..780d02af957d 100644
--- a/tools/objtool/elf.c
+++ b/tools/objtool/elf.c
@@ -561,6 +561,7 @@ int elf_write(struct elf *elf)
struct section *sec;
Elf_Scn *s;

+ /* Update section headers for changed sections: */
list_for_each_entry(sec, &elf->sections, list) {
if (sec->changed) {
s = elf_getscn(elf->elf, sec->idx);
@@ -568,13 +569,17 @@ int elf_write(struct elf *elf)
return -1;
- if (!gelf_update_shdr (s, &sec->sh)) {
+ if (!gelf_update_shdr(s, &sec->sh)) {
return -1;

+ /* Make sure the new section header entries get updated properly. */
+ elf_flagelf(elf->elf, ELF_C_SET, ELF_F_DIRTY);
+ /* Write all changes to the file. */
if (elf_update(elf->elf, ELF_C_WRITE) < 0) {
return -1;