[Linux-ima-devel] [PATCH v2 4/7] ima: measure and appraise kexec image and initramfs

Mimi Zohar zohar at linux.vnet.ibm.com
Mon Dec 28 04:50:31 PST 2015

On Mon, 2015-12-28 at 10:08 +0800, Dave Young wrote:
> On 12/25/15 at 09:45am, Mimi Zohar wrote:
> > IMA calculates the file hash, in this case, based on the buffer
> > contents.   The hash is calculated once and used for both measurement
> > and appraisal.  If the file integrity appraisal fails (eg. hash
> > comparison or signature failure), IMA prevents the kexec files from
> > being used.
> > 
> Ok, thanks for the explanatioin. But I have another question, why do we
> need a special hook for KEXEC? Shouldn't all files use same way to do the
> measurement and appraisal?

"By all files" are you referring to all files read by the kernel or all
files opened, executed or mmapped by the system?

Currently IMA allocates a page sized buffer, reads a file a page chunk
at a time calculating the file hash as it does so, and then frees the
buffer before returning to the caller.  This method of calculating the
file hash is used for measuring and appraising files opened
(FILE_CHECK), executed (BPRM_CHECK) or mmapped (MMAP_CHECK) by the

This patch set addresses files being read by kernel.  A single new
generic hook named ima_hash_and_process_file() is defined to not only
measure and appraise the kexec image and initramfs, but firmware and the
IMA policy.   As we identify other places that the kernel is reading
files, this hook would be called in those places as well.


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