1. 30 Sep, 2019 1 commit
    • Linus Torvalds's avatar
      random: try to actively add entropy rather than passively wait for it · 50ee7529
      Linus Torvalds authored
      For 5.3 we had to revert a nice ext4 IO pattern improvement, because it
      caused a bootup regression due to lack of entropy at bootup together
      with arguably broken user space that was asking for secure random
      numbers when it really didn't need to.
      See commit 72dbcf72
       (Revert "ext4: make __ext4_get_inode_loc plug").
      This aims to solve the issue by actively generating entropy noise using
      the CPU cycle counter when waiting for the random number generator to
      initialize.  This only works when you have a high-frequency time stamp
      counter available, but that's the case on all modern x86 CPU's, and on
      most other modern CPU's too.
      What we do is to generate jitter entropy from the CPU cycle counter
      under a somewhat complex load: calling the scheduler while also
      guaranteeing a certain amount of timing noise by also triggering a
      I'm sure we can tweak this, and that people will want to look at other
      alternatives, but there's been a number of papers written on jitter
      entropy, and this should really be fairly conservative by crediting one
      bit of entropy for every timer-induced jump in the cycle counter.  Not
      because the timer itself would be all that unpredictable, but because
      the interaction between the timer and the loop is going to be.
      Even if (and perhaps particularly if) the timer actually happens on
      another CPU, the cacheline interaction between the loop that reads the
      cycle counter and the timer itself firing is going to add perturbations
      to the cycle counter values that get mixed into the entropy pool.
      As Thomas pointed out, with a modern out-of-order CPU, even quite simple
      loops show a fair amount of hard-to-predict timing variability even in
      the absense of external interrupts.  But this tries to take that further
      by actually having a fairly complex interaction.
      This is not going to solve the entropy issue for architectures that have
      no CPU cycle counter, but it's not clear how (and if) that is solvable,
      and the hardware in question is largely starting to be irrelevant.  And
      by doing this we can at least avoid some of the even more contentious
      approaches (like making the entropy waiting time out in order to avoid
      the possibly unbounded waiting).
      Cc: Ahmed Darwish <darwish.07@gmail.com>
      Cc: Thomas Gleixner <tglx@linutronix.de>
      Cc: Theodore Ts'o <tytso@mit.edu>
      Cc: Nicholas Mc Guire <hofrat@opentech.at>
      Cc: Andy Lutomirski <luto@kernel.org>
      Cc: Kees Cook <keescook@chromium.org>
      Cc: Willy Tarreau <w@1wt.eu>
      Cc: Alexander E. Patrakov <patrakov@gmail.com>
      Cc: Lennart Poettering <mzxreary@0pointer.de>
      Signed-off-by: default avatarLinus Torvalds <torvalds@linux-foundation.org>
  2. 28 Sep, 2019 10 commits
  3. 27 Sep, 2019 29 commits