Re: [PATCH v4 12/14] platform/x86: wmi: create character devices when requested by drivers

From: Greg KH
Date: Thu Oct 05 2017 - 15:09:45 EST

On Thu, Oct 05, 2017 at 07:03:24PM +0000, Mario.Limonciello@xxxxxxxx wrote:
> > -----Original Message-----
> > From: Greg KH [mailto:greg@xxxxxxxxx]
> > Sent: Thursday, October 5, 2017 1:47 PM
> > To: Darren Hart <dvhart@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
> > Cc: Pali Rohár <pali.rohar@xxxxxxxxx>; Limonciello, Mario
> > <Mario_Limonciello@xxxxxxxx>; andy.shevchenko@xxxxxxxxx; linux-
> > kernel@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx; platform-driver-x86@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxx; luto@xxxxxxxxxx;
> > quasisec@xxxxxxxxxx; rjw@xxxxxxxxxxxxx; mjg59@xxxxxxxxxx; hch@xxxxxx
> > Subject: Re: [PATCH v4 12/14] platform/x86: wmi: create character devices when
> > requested by drivers
> >
> > On Thu, Oct 05, 2017 at 10:39:25AM -0700, Darren Hart wrote:
> > > > It does, thanks. And as we now understand it (I'm guessing it had to be
> > > > semi-understood in the older wmi drivers already), validating it
> > > > properly seems to be the key for creating an interface that we "know" to
> > > > be safe.
> > > >
> > >
> > > We don't use the MOF data in any of the existing wmi drivers, because
> > > they are all oddities which map to kernel managed subsystems (hotkeys,
> > > LED control, RF Kill switches) rather than what WMI (Windows
> > > Manageability Interface) was designed for. The intent of these patches
> > > to enable that management aspect of the platform.
> > >
> > > This is the biggest hurdle for WMI support.
> > >
> > > WMI was designed to bypass the OS, and is used in consumer devices
> > > intended to run Windows. This leads to an interface that is very vendor
> > > specific and not consistently broken up into nice functional blocks.
> > >
> > > Vendors would like to use this interface in Linux as it is being used in
> > > Windows. Specifically, they want to be able to have a generic system in
> > > the kernel which allows the WMI mechanism to be used by userspace,
> > > without the need to patch the kernel for every platform.
> >
> > And how _exactly_ is this interface exposed in Windows? Is it ad-hoc
> > with custom kernel drivers written by each vendor? Or does the OS
> > provide a "sane" interface for it?
> On Windows it's a driver-less solution. Vendors don't do anything other
> than provide the MOF (which describes how the data passed to ASL looks).

How do they "provide it"?

> When Windows boots up, _WDG is parsed,

Who parses it, the Windows kernel?

> the binary MOF is loaded into the WMI repository.

Who does the loading? Where does the "WMI repository" live?

> The MOF describes how named objects map to GUIDs which map to ASL.

So this all lives in kernelspace?

> From Powershell or from any application that uses WMI as admin you can
> look up the root namespace and see all objects.

And what is the interface that powershell uses to get that information
from the kerenel?

> You can pass calls back
> and forth. There's all sorts of examples of it here:
> Windows doesn't validate the data when it's passed to ASL and back.

How do you know? Who does the "passing"? The Windows kernel is just a
blind pipe? If so, then what does the mappings?

> It just knows what it looks like, size of the buffer and relays the information.

relays from/to what?

> It's up to firmware to block the crazy stuff that you can put in a buffer.

So userspace can pass any blob it wants to the firmware through this
interface and the kernel does not parse anything? How is that

> > Again, I like my TPM to work, and I don't want a random rootkit exploit
> > to be able to destroy it :)
> I'd like to however point out you can't kill your TPM from this interface.

On _your_ platform, can you guarantee it on any other platform? :)

And I strongly doubt your BIOS would stand up to a good fuzzer, almost
no firmware can. Heck, the kernel even has issues, we've been fixing
them for years...


greg k-h