1. Computers
  2. Display Drivers
  3. Graphics Cards
  4. Memory
  5. Motherboards
  6. Processors
  7. Software
  8. Storage
  9. Operating Systems


Facebook RSS Twitter Twitter Google Plus


Phoronix Test Suite

OpenBenchmarking Benchmarking Platform
Phoromatic Test Orchestration

UEFI Secure Boot Still A Big Problem For Linux

Free Software

Published on 17 January 2012 09:12 PM EST
Written by Michael Larabel in Free Software
33 Comments

Matthew Garrett has provided some insight regarding some of the problems still outstanding for Linux to handle UEFI Secure Boot.

Matthew Garrett, the Red Hat developer commonly working on power management and UEFI/BIOS matters for Linux, has a new blog post related to UEFI Secure Boot. This latest posting is simply entitled Why UEFI secure boot is difficult for Linux.

The post covers that the code for Linux to handle UEFI Secure Boot is practically done, but there's many other issues outstanding related to the handling of custom secure boot mode, out-of-tree kernel drivers, licensing, key distribution, and other matters. Microsoft has said that for x86/x86_64 systems it should be possible to disable UEFI Secure Boot, but recently it's come to light that ARM-based Windows 8 systems will not be permitted to disable this Microsoft-inspired feature.

Garrett also points out that using Secure Boot under Linux would effectively kill out-of-tree kernel drivers like the AMD Catalyst and NVIDIA graphics drivers. "Signed Linux kernels must refuse to load any unsigned kernel modules. Virtualbox on Linux? Dead. Nvidia binary driver on Linux? Dead. All out of tree kernel modules? Utterly, utterly dead. Building an updated driver locally? Not going to happen."

Matthew summarizes the current situation as, "We can write the code required to support secure boot on Linux in a minimal amount of time - in fact, most of it's now done. But significant practical problems remain, and so far we have no workable solutions for any of them."

About The Author
Michael Larabel is the principal author of Phoronix.com and founded the web-site in 2004 with a focus on enriching the Linux hardware experience and being the largest web-site devoted to Linux hardware reviews, particularly for products relevant to Linux gamers and enthusiasts but also commonly reviewing servers/workstations and embedded Linux devices. Michael has written more than 10,000 articles covering the state of Linux hardware support, Linux performance, graphics hardware drivers, and other topics. Michael is also the lead developer of the Phoronix Test Suite, Phoromatic, and OpenBenchmarking.org automated testing software. He can be followed via and or contacted via .
Latest Articles & Reviews
  1. Ubuntu 15.04 Offers Faster OpenGL For AMD Radeon GPUs On Open-Source
  2. Ubuntu 15.04 Brings Some Graphics Performance Improvements For Intel Haswell
  3. Sub-$20 802.11n USB WiFi Adapter That's Linux Friendly
  4. The Lenovo T450s Is Working Beautifully With Linux
  5. Linux 4.0 SSD EXT4 / Btrfs / XFS / F2FS Benchmarks
  6. Linux 4.0 Hard Drive Comparison With Six File-Systems
Latest Linux News
  1. Phoronix Server Migration
  2. GCC 5.2 Will Come In Two To Three Months
  3. AMD FP3 Motherboard Ported To Coreboot
  4. The Difference In Optimizations Between NIR & GLSL
  5. OpenMandriva Lx 3 Alpha: Adds UEFI Support, Defaults To LXQt
  6. Systemd Kills Off Shutdownd
  7. There's Now More Than 1,100 Games On Steam For Linux
  8. Btrfs In Linux 4.1 Has Fixes For File-Systems Of 20 Terabytes & Up
  9. Microsoft's CoreCLR Now Works On FreeBSD
  10. Unigine 2.0 Beta 2 Brings PBR, SSR, Kinect 2 Support
Most Viewed News This Week
  1. AMD Releases New "AMDGPU" Linux Kernel Driver & Mesa Support
  2. Ubuntu's Desktop-Next Switching From .DEBs To Snappy
  3. My Favorite Computer Desk Of The Past Decade For Less Than $100
  4. AMD Open-Sources "Addrlib" From Catalyst
  5. Library Operating System (LibOS) For Linux Still Being Pursued
  6. Debian 8.0 Jessie Is Ready For Release This Weekend
  7. GIMP's Porting To GTK3 Continues
  8. Features Thus Far For The Linux 4.1 Kernel