Mill Computing, Inc. Forums The Mill Architecture Security Reply To: Security

joseph.h.garvin
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Post count: 21

If the Mill doesn’t have some other solution I think you could roll your own protocol using regions to allow the service to be sure who is calling the portal. Have the portal put a random value only readable by the desired calling thread into memory. When the calling thread wants to make the portal call, it passes the number provided by the service that only it knows, and the service then verifies that the caller’s number is equal to its, and then sets its number to a new random value in anticipation of the next call. Critically when the check fails the service needs to sleep for a period or fault or cause the caller to fault somehow, and pick a new random value for the next challenge, otherwise the caller can brute force retry. Random numbers need to be used rather than just an incrementing counter, because otherwise a malicious thread can guess the current value from information like how long the system has been running or how many times the service has likely been invoked.

Edit: this scheme assumes the calling thread is not ‘in cahoots’ with a malicious thread and thus won’t deliberately share the random value with it. But since the Mill protection model is that threads with a given permission can always grant other threads a subset of their permissions, I think this is OK.

  • This reply was modified 8 years, 6 months ago by  joseph.h.garvin. Reason: simplified scheme considerably
  • This reply was modified 8 years, 6 months ago by  joseph.h.garvin.