[firstname.lastname@example.org: Re: Updated SELinux Release]
----- Forwarded message from Stephen Smalley <email@example.com> -----
Delivery-date: Thu, 04 Nov 2004 16:37:30 +0000
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Subject: Re: Updated SELinux Release
From: Stephen Smalley <firstname.lastname@example.org>
To: Manoj Srivastava <email@example.com>
Organization: National Security Agency
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On Thu, 2004-11-04 at 02:02, Manoj Srivastava wrote:
> Moving waaay forward. I asked the Debian kernel team to
> consider compiling in SELinux (perhaps disabled by default, for
> starters), and was told that that is not going to fly because of
> "significant performance hit" one takes by compiling SELinux in. I
> did not have any data to refute the claim, so that is where we sit.
Given that SELinux supports disabling both at boot time (via selinux=0)
and at runtime (via /selinux/disable, only useable prior to the initial
policy load, used by the patched /sbin/init when /etc/selinux/config
specifies disabled), the only performance impact they can truly claim is
fundamental to enabling SELinux at compile-time is the overhead of LSM
itself. So ask for measurements showing that LSM in 2.6 imposes a
significant overhead by itself, and don't accept measurements based on
old versions of LSM prior to 2.6.
> While a laudable long term goal, the reality is that most
> distributions do not ship these utilities today, and in the case of
> Debian, progress, while it is happening, is slow enough that
> pragmatism requires we consider the reality that SELinux shall _not_
> be the default in the near term.
Fedora (and RHEL4) and Hardened Gentoo have extensive SELinux
integration, and SuSE 9.x had the SELinux code included in the kernel
and a subset of the userland, just disabled by default.
Stephen Smalley <firstname.lastname@example.org>
National Security Agency
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