We're hiring!
*

Linux isn't immune

Gustavo Padovan avatar

Gustavo Padovan
March 14, 2018

Share this post:

The recent disclosure of Meltdown and Spectre hardware vulnerabilities were unprecedented in the history of computing. They affect a substantial portion of chips powering most of the infrastructure used by our society today.

While software vulnerabilities can be easily repaired with an update, it is a completely different story when it comes to hardware, and the Linux Kernel community had a hard time dealing with them.

The mitigation for Meltdown came in the form of a fundamental change of the kernel memory management through the kernel page-table isolation (KPTI) patch set merged in 4.15-rc6, which isolates the kernel page table from the userspace page table.

Spectre, on the other hand, is much harder to fix, and while initial mitigation exists, more elegant and efficient solutions are yet to be developed. As its name says, Spectre may still haunt us for quite some time.

These issues may be just the first of their kind but they are already causing all of us to be exposed. Too many service providers and product companies have failed and will continue to fail at patching their kernels.

Shifting all industries and sectors toward following the mainline Linux kernel closely is more crucial than ever.

(Originally published in Linux Format magazine, Issue 234, January 2018)

Comments (0)


Add a Comment






Allowed tags: <b><i><br>Add a new comment:


Search the newsroom

Latest Blog Posts

ROCK Pi and an easy place: Panfrost & Wayland on a Rockchip board

06/08/2019

Ongoing work on the reverse-engineered Panfrost OpenGL ES driver for Arm Mali GPUs has turned the RK3399 SoC into a very attractive platform…

What's new in OpenXR 1.0 & Monado?

02/08/2019

As part of its unwavering commitment to open source and open standards, Collabora is proud to be part of bringing the recently-released…

Zink: Summer Update & SIGGRAPH 2019

25/07/2019

There's been quite a few updates to Zink, an OpenGL implementation on top of Vulkan, since I last wrote about it. Here's an overview of…

GStreamer in Oslo

18/07/2019

A little over a month and a half ago, Collaborans including Aaron Boxer, George Kiagiadakis, Guillaume Desmottes, Stéphane Cerveau and myself…

GNOME meets Panfrost

26/06/2019

In my last Panfrost blog post, I announced my internship goal: improve Panfrost to run GNOME3. GNOME is a popular Linux desktop making heavy…

Using dummy-hcd to play with USB gadgets

24/06/2019

Dummy_hcd which consists of a software-emulated host controller and a UDC chip. In other words, this means you can play with USB gadgets…

Open Since 2005 logo

We use cookies on this website to ensure that you get the best experience. By continuing to use this website you are consenting to the use of these cookies. To find out more please follow this link.

Collabora Ltd © 2005-2019. All rights reserved. Website sitemap.