Gentoo Hardened progress meeting of march 2013


Another month has passed, so time for a new progress meeting...


GCC v4.7 has been unmasked, allowing a large set of users to test out the new GCC. It is also expected that GCC 4.8-rc1 will hit the tree next week. In the hardened-dev overlay, hardened support for x86, amd64 and arm has been added (SPEC updates) and the remainder of architectures will be added by the end of the week.

Kernel and grSecurity/PaX

Kernel 3.7.5 had a security issue (local root privilege escalation) so 3.7.5-r1 which held a fix for this was stabilized quickly. However, other (non-security) problems have been reported, such as one with dovecot, regarding the VSIZE memory size. This should be fixed in the 3.8 series, so these are candidate for a faster stabilization. This faster stabilization is never fun, as it increases the likelihood that we miss other things, but they are needed as the vulnerability in the previous stable kernel was too severe.

Regarding XATTR_PAX, we are getting pretty close to the migration. The eclass is ready and will be announced for review on the appropriate mailinglists later this week. A small problem still remains on Paludis-using systems (Paludis does not record NEEDED.ELF.2 information - linkage information - so it is hard to get all the linkage information on a system). A different revdep-pax and migrate-pax toolset will be built that detects the necessary linkage information, but much slower than on a Portage-running system.


The 11th revision of the policies are now stable, and work is on the way for the 12th revision which will hit the tree soon. Some work is on the way for setools and policycoreutils (one due to a new release - setools - and the other one due to a build failure if PAM is not set). Both packages will hit the hardened-dev overlay soon.

A new "edition" of the selinuxnode virtual image has been pushed to the mirror system, providing a SELinux-enabled (enforcing) Gentoo Hardened system with grSecurity and PaX, as well as IMA and EVM enabled.


The 13.0 profiles have been running fine for a while at a few of our developer systems. No changes have been needed (yet) so things are looking good.

System Integrity

The necessary userland utilities have been moved to the main tree. The documentation for IMA/EVM has been updated as well to reflec the current state of IMA/EVM within Gentoo Hardened. IMA, even with the custom policies, seems to be working well. EVM on the other hand has some issues, so you might need to run with EVM=fix for now. Debugging on this issue is on the way.


Some of the user oriented documentation (integrity and SELinux) have been moved to the Gentoo Wiki for easier user contributions and simplified management. Other documents will follow soon.