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Thread: A Root-less X Server Nears Reality

  1. #1
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    Default A Root-less X Server Nears Reality

    Phoronix: A Root-less X Server Nears Reality

    One of the benefits of moving the different graphics hardware drivers over to using kernel mode-setting, an in-kernel GPU memory manager (whether it be GEM or TTM), and other newer X innovations is the possibility of now running the X Server without root privileges. By doing so, this of course improves the security since this very large chunk of code is no longer running with all of these high-privileged rights. Due to now living in a KMS-enabled world, at least on the Intel and ATI side (the NVIDIA side is still slowly but surely coming via Nouveau), it's rather easy to get the X Server running without any special rights...

    http://www.phoronix.com/vr.php?view=NzM2MA

  2. #2
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    Confusing headline, I thought root-less as in without a root window..

  3. #3
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    Quote Originally Posted by curaga View Post
    Confusing headline, I thought root-less as in without a root window..
    I do not see anything confusing about it. I wonder what will nvidia do, nouveau's KMS is rather in good shape, all of my cards work flawlessly (260 GTX ~ 9600GT ~ 6600GT ~ 8800GT).

  4. #4
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    Come on Nvidia, go for it damn it.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by hax0r View Post
    I do not see anything confusing about it. I wonder what will nvidia do, nouveau's KMS is rather in good shape, all of my cards work flawlessly (260 GTX ~ 9600GT ~ 6600GT ~ 8800GT).
    i thought nvidia was not involved at all in nouvueau...

  6. #6
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    Quote Originally Posted by krogy View Post
    i thought nvidia was not involved at all in nouvueau...
    Hmm who said that they are, or somebody misunderstood me?

  7. #7
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    The NVIDIA driver just needs access to the /dev/nvidia* files.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by hax0r View Post
    I do not see anything confusing about it.
    The term "rootless" has a particular meaning with respect to X servers, and that meaning has nothing to do with the superuser. It's exactly as curaga says.

  9. #9
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    OK, am I missing something here? I use Gentoo linux and binary nvidia drivers. I am able to run X as a user (without root privileges) right now.
    Last edited by gregy; 07-02-2009 at 05:28 AM.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by gregy View Post
    OK, am I missing something here? I use Gentoo linux and binary nvidia drivers. I am able to run X as a user (without root privileges) right now.
    The X executable has its setuid bit set in most distributions.

    E.g.

    Code:
    jeff@tony:~$ stat /usr/bin/X
      File: `/usr/bin/X'
      Size: 10472     	Blocks: 24         IO Block: 4096   regular file
    Device: fc00h/64512d	Inode: 593864      Links: 1
    Access: (6755/-rwsr-sr-x)  Uid: (    0/    root)   Gid: (    0/    root)
    Access: 2009-05-02 13:13:07.000000000 +1000
    Modify: 2009-04-03 18:44:01.000000000 +1100
    Change: 2009-05-02 13:03:58.000000000 +1000

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