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AMD's Trusted Execution Environment Is Coming With Linux 5.6

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  • AMD's Trusted Execution Environment Is Coming With Linux 5.6

    Phoronix: AMD's Trusted Execution Environment Is Coming With Linux 5.6

    Last week I wrote about the AMD Secure Processor support for Linux 5.6 being queued as part of the cryptography subsystyem work with supporting the PSP / Secure Processor of Raven Ridge APUs. That AMD Secure Processor support is now rounded out with the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) driver being queued for wiring into that subsystem...

    http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...-For-Linux-5.6

  • #2
    This is great news if mainstream Linux makes use of the feature. Here I’m talking about the use of copyrighted media. I’m not a Big fan of Chrome so there is little value in this feature on this platform for me. However it would be great to see mainstream support.

    As for fear of the TEE this should expose the capability of the subsystem and hopefully reduce fears instead of increasing them.

    Comment


    • #3
      Typo:

      Originally posted by phoronix View Post
      Phoronix: AMD's Trusted Execution Environment Is Coming With Linux 5.6

      Last week I wrote about the AMD Secure Processor support for Linux 5.6 being queued as part of the cryptography subsystyem work with supporting the PSP / Secure Processor of Raven Ridge APUs. That AMD Secure Processor support is now rounded out with the Trusted Execution Environment (TEE) driver being queued for wiring into that subsystem...

      http://www.phoronix.com/scan.php?pag...-For-Linux-5.6

      Comment


      • #4
        An ASCII diagram. Haven't seen one of those in ages. It looked a little too good, so I did a google search and turns out there are several ASCII diagram editors available.

        Comment


        • #5
          Originally posted by wizard69 View Post
          This is great news if mainstream Linux makes use of the feature. Here I’m talking about the use of copyrighted media.
          All issues with the fact that this "feature" (the one in the hardware / firmware itself, not the Linux support) is a serious concern to anyone dealing with private data aside, why are we willingly accepting this kind of restriction just to view "copyrighted media"?

          If you had bought a paper book in, say, 1940, would you have accepted restrictions that you had to go to a specific place at a specific time, use a specific kind of gas lamp, on a specially licensed table, with a patented (and leased) chair, to read the book -- after you had also called and asked permission from the copyright holder, for each page you turned? Under pain of a lengthy time in jail if the terms weren't followed to the letter?

          I would think not -- illiteracy would have been the name of the game had that happened, and copyright would have been completely revamped. Why are we now at the point where that's not possible vs. giving ultimate control of our general purpose computers to a handful of corporations that really couldn't care less about the safety, integrity, or security of your data?

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          • #6
            Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
            If you had bought a paper book in, say, 1940, would you have accepted restrictions that you had to go to a specific place at a specific time, use a specific kind of gas lamp, on a specially licensed table, with a patented (and leased) chair, to read the book -- after you had also called and asked permission from the copyright holder, for each page you turned? Under pain of a lengthy time in jail if the terms weren't followed to the letter?
            In fairness, if the technology had existed in 1940 to duplicate a book with a single button push and essentially zero added cost we probably *would* have been living with some kind of usage restrictions designed to keep the book away from the duplicator (eg you can only access them in a library)... and there probably would have been some impact on consumption if not on literacy.

            I suspect there would have been more focus on limiting access to the duplicator than on limiting access to the books, although it's not clear that analogy transfers well into the computer world either, where duplicating the duplicator (cracking/copying program) is even easier than duplicating the content.

            I am having trouble mapping your comment about getting permission from the copyright holder for each page turned, but I try to avoid content protected materials as much as possible (which usually means lightly protected rather than unrestricted, unfortunately, eg physical media rather than downloaded/streamed) so may not have run across that situation yet, ie I'm asking not disagreeing.
            Last edited by bridgman; 01-04-2020, 05:34 PM.

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            • #7
              These marketing names do not make this binary blob execution any better. How can I deactivate this untrusted computer environment on my systems? Sounds like a security nightmare to me.

              Comment


              • #8
                Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post

                All issues with the fact that this "feature" (the one in the hardware / firmware itself, not the Linux support) is a serious concern to anyone dealing with private data aside, why are we willingly accepting this kind of restriction just to view "copyrighted media"?

                If you had bought a paper book in, say, 1940, would you have accepted restrictions that you had to go to a specific place at a specific time, use a specific kind of gas lamp, on a specially licensed table, with a patented (and leased) chair, to read the book -- after you had also called and asked permission from the copyright holder, for each page you turned? Under pain of a lengthy time in jail if the terms weren't followed to the letter?

                I would think not -- illiteracy would have been the name of the game had that happened, and copyright would have been completely revamped. Why are we now at the point where that's not possible vs. giving ultimate control of our general purpose computers to a handful of corporations that really couldn't care less about the safety, integrity, or security of your data?
                Exactly my idea. Guess it's about time the user gets back control over "his" machine, and the content of it. Mind you, some of these enhancements might be used to protect you from the outside world, if implemented and steered correctly.

                Cheers

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                • #9
                  Originally posted by bridgman View Post

                  In fairness, if the technology had existed in 1940 to duplicate a book with a single button push and essentially zero added cost we probably *would* have been living with some kind of usage restrictions designed to keep the book away from the duplicator (eg you can only access them in a library)... and there probably would have been some impact on consumption if not on literacy.

                  I suspect there would have been more focus on limiting access to the duplicator than on limiting access to the books, although it's not clear that analogy transfers well into the computer world either, where duplicating the duplicator (cracking/copying program) is even easier than duplicating the content.

                  I am having trouble mapping your comment about getting permission from the copyright holder for each page turned, but I try to avoid content protected materials as much as possible (which usually means lightly protected rather than unrestricted, unfortunately, eg physical media rather than downloaded/streamed) so may not have run across that situation yet, ie I'm asking not disagreeing.
                  Thanks for your thoughtful reply! I know this is a contentious topic overall, but a few general comments:

                  I am much the same -- I pay for physical media only, don't do streaming of any type aside from maybe some YouTube cat video type stuff, and yes, I was referring to commercial streaming specifically with my "phone up the copyright holder" jab. In fact I'm finding myself increasingly disconnected from parts of society in terms of media because of the move to "streaming exclusives" -- that's a bridge I won't cross regardless of cost, it's a philosophical issue (disappearing culture), not a financial one.

                  I would however challenge the argument that access to a duplicator must by necessity increase copyright violation without (sane) bounds. In fact I suspect the DMCA and related laws were born of a sort of corporate paranoia more than an actual reaction to the effects of illegal copying. The reason I take this position is:

                  1.) Did you know you can get high definition, unencrypted, practically untraceable video streams, legally, right now? All you need is an ATSC tuner. Yet, somehow, this hasn't factored in to piracy in any meaningful way as far as I am aware. (As an aside, it's rather sad when I decide to simply pull a TV show from OTA broadcast channels vs. buying the BluRay set because I can play the OTA recording on equipment I fully control -- like my P9 boxes -- while I can't legally do the same with the BluRays).

                  2.) Most people are honest. Most people understand that illegal copying is a crime with serious penalties. Most people understand they are monitored on the Internet, and that if they try to use that theoretical duplicator for piracy there's a good chance they will be caught and jailed. Isn't that enough of a deterrent to at least contain piracy to manageable levels (i.e. weighed against the harm the DMCA etc. have caused, the small amount of residual piracy is insignificant)?

                  3.) Follow on from 2.) above. People have an intrinsic idea of what is fair, based on experience with traditional purchased physical items (books, records, tapes, CDs, etc.). The average person does not consider the restrictions on playback (i.e. for DVD/BluRay "how" and "where") fair, and I can state from direct observation over many years that while DRM purports to "keep honest people honest", the actual effect has been to "make technical pirates of honest people". When individuals in e.g. Europe can legally play their DVD and BluRay disks using 100% open source software, but individuals in the US cannot due to a law that has had serious unintended consequences, all it does is highlight that the pirated version has more perceived value than the official purchased version -- and many people then just decide to ignore the law entirely, and play the disk anyway, knowing they won't get caught. How does keeping this action illegal help the content industry? All I see is people getting used to breaking DRM for access to the media they think they've paid for in the way they want.

                  4.) There are always better technical solutions than the ones we have right now -- in fact, the current model is completely broken as-is, anyone that knows anything about how e.g. HDMI works knows that a protected work can be copied with just a few little tweaks, and that's not even going into the simple fact that you can point a camcorder at a TV and get a passable 720p or maybe even 1080p copy with some postprocessing. I've advocated watermarking for a while now in lieu of strict access controls, as it is far more effective in theory -- e.g. if the watermark on my copy (assuming that I could buy a movie file that isn't DRM restricted) shows up in a pirated version? Permaban on any other purchases from all major studios plus a lawsuit.

                  I guess my main point is that given a choice between watching movies and having control of my computers I'll choose control of my computers all day long. The data on many of them is worth far more than I'm willing to risk just to watch a movie. Furthermore, if physical media goes away (and a DRM-free digital copy isn't available for local storage), I intend to stop going to the theatres too -- it's a package deal, either the work is available for study and sharing (in the "come let me show you a movie in my collection I think is thought provoking" sense), or it isn't. If it isn't, I prefer not to engage in any part of it.
                  Last edited by madscientist159; 01-04-2020, 06:08 PM.

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                  • #10
                    Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
                    I would however challenge the argument that access to a duplicator must by necessity increase copyright violation without (sane) bounds. In fact I suspect the DMCA and related laws were born of a sort of corporate paranoia more than an actual reaction to the effects of illegal copying.
                    Agreed... most decisions to restrict freedom are driven by emotion rather than logic... basically "we're not sure it's needed but if we don't do it and it turns out we were wrong then there's no going back". There is some truth to that although it ignores the obvious point that future content can be protected even if current content was not... although I imagine most people would say that the only improvement new content has over old content is higher resolution rather than innovation in plot or acting

                    Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
                    1.) Did you know you can get high definition, unencrypted, practically untraceable video streams, legally, right now? All you need is an ATSC tuner. Yet, somehow, this hasn't factored in to piracy in any meaningful way as far as I am aware. (As an aside, it's rather sad when I decide to simply pull a TV show from OTA broadcast channels vs. buying the BluRay set because I can play the OTA recording on equipment I fully control -- like my P9 boxes -- while I can't legally do the same with the BluRays).
                    I didn't know this actually... I assumed they were all protected as well although I never gave much thought to the mechanisms. Maybe the thinking is that including advertising is sufficient.

                    Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
                    2.) Most people are honest. Most people understand that illegal copying is a crime with serious penalties. Most people understand they are monitored on the Internet, and that if they try to use that theoretical duplicator for piracy there's a good chance they will be caught and jailed. Isn't that enough of a deterrent to at least contain piracy to manageable levels (i.e. weighed against the harm the DMCA etc. have caused, the small amount of residual piracy is insignificant)?
                    Historically the problem here has been conflicting laws and enforcement between countries... what is illegal in one country is legal, or at least tolerated in another. That makes duplication of media in one country for sale in another via expendable middlemen seem attractive... in fact some days it seemed that was the backbone of the Toronto economy

                    There seem to be similar problems with streaming - IIRC illegal streaming services have seen some spectacular growth recently. They usually get shut down eventually but then you end up with a race between well funded illegal businesses and poorly funded law enforcement, and that never ends well. That said, focusing on the high volume aspect of illegal duplication rather than on individuals would solve a lot of problems, and maybe shed light on the fact that insufficient DRM on a random PC is probably not what is feeding the duplication process in the first place.

                    Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
                    3.) Follow on from 2.) above. People have an intrinsic idea of what is fair, based on experience with traditional purchased physical items (books, records, tapes, CDs, etc.). The average person does not consider the restrictions on playback (i.e. for DVD/BluRay "how" and "where") fair, and I can state from direct observation over many years that while DRM purports to "keep honest people honest", the actual effect has been to "make technical pirates of honest people". When individuals in e.g. Europe can legally play their DVD and BluRay disks using 100% open source software, but individuals in the US cannot due to a law that has had serious unintended consequences, all it does is highlight that the pirated version has more perceived value than the official purchased version -- and many people then just decide to ignore the law entirely, and play the disk anyway, knowing they won't get caught. How does keeping this action illegal help the content industry? All I see is people getting used to breaking DRM for access to the media they think they've paid for in the way they want.
                    Yeah, this is the root of the problem - focusing on protection of technical solutions rather than focusing on illegal duplication itself.

                    The theory is that there is a level of illegal duplication (dating back to making a cassette with your favorite tracks on it for a friend) that is not practical to detect. Not sure what happened in the US but IIRC up here the conclusion was to implement a tax on blank media then feed the proceeds to copyright holders based on their estimates of how much small-scale illegal duplication was happening. Nice work if you can get it

                    The obvious question is whether even trying to limit that kind of duplication makes sense. The obvious but unfortunate answer is that if it makes a noticeable difference in a company's bottom line then it is going to seem worth doing, and in the absence of any way to measure all it takes is the assumption that it will make a difference.

                    Going back to "duplicating the duplicator" I wonder if there is a third approach - not blocking duplication but finding a reasonably reliable way of reporting it. Other than obvious concerns about privacy and false positives, which could at least theoretically be handled via trusted anonymizing, the ability to quantify the amount of illegal duplication and the original source of the content would be useful and might lead to some better decisions in future.

                    Downside is that the technology would probably be even more invasive than what we see today.

                    Originally posted by madscientist159 View Post
                    4.) There are always better technical solutions than the ones we have right now -- in fact, the current model is completely broken as-is, anyone that knows anything about how e.g. HDMI works knows that a protected work can be copied with just a few little tweaks, and that's not even going into the simple fact that you can point a camcorder at a TV and get a passable 720p or maybe even 1080p copy with some postprocessing. I've advocated watermarking for a while now in lieu of strict access controls, as it is far more effective in theory -- e.g. if the watermark on my copy (assuming that I could buy a movie file that isn't DRM restricted) shows up in a pirated version? Permaban on any other purchases from all major studios plus a lawsuit.
                    Agreed... watermarking seems like such an obvious part of any "just" solution that I'm surprised it isn't even being tried, although the obvious challenge in the early days was the conflict between the need for each copy to be digitally different with the desire for master-based high volume duplication of physical media.

                    It's a timely comment though, since what was difficult for physical media seems like it should be trivial to implement for streaming. Hmm...
                    Last edited by bridgman; 01-04-2020, 07:46 PM.

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