Re: [patch V2 27/28] x86/speculation: Add seccomp Spectre v2 user space protection mode

From: Linus Torvalds
Date: Sun Nov 25 2018 - 15:41:07 EST

[ You forgot to fix your quilt setup.. ]

On Sun, 25 Nov 2018, Thomas Gleixner wrote:
> The mitigation guide documents how STIPB works:
> Setting bit 1 (STIBP) of the IA32_SPEC_CTRL MSR on a logical processor
> prevents the predicted targets of indirect branches on any logical
> processor of that core from being controlled by software that executes
> (or executed previously) on another logical processor of the same core.

Can we please just fix this stupid lie?

Yes, Intel calls it "STIBP" and tries to make it out to be about the
indirect branch predictor being per-SMT thread.

But the reason it is unacceptable is apparently because in reality it just
disables indirect branch prediction entirely. So yes, *technically* it's
true that that limits indirect branch prediction to just a single SMT
core, but in reality it is just a "go really slow" mode.

If STIBP had actually just keyed off the logical SMT thread, we wouldn't
need to have worried about it in the first place.

So let's document reality rather than Intel's Pollyanna world-view.

Reality matters. It's why we had to go all this. Lying about things
and making it appear like it's not a big deal was why the original
patch made it through without people noticing.