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List Archive: gentoo-qa
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To: gentoo-dev@g.o
From: Diego Elio Pettenò <flameeyes@...>
Subject: Portage to die on sure-enough _FORTIFY_SOURCE overflows
Date: Tue, 28 Sep 2010 11:43:28 +0200
Hi all,

since the last time I asked Zac about this it came back to bite me[1]
this time I'm going to send the announce to the list first, and if
nobody can actually come up with a good reason not to, I'm going to ask
Zac tomorrow to re-enable the feature.

What is this about? Portage already reports some of the overflow
warnings coming from the glibc fortified sources (-D_FORTIFY_SOURCE=2
-O2 — enabled since gcc 4.3.3-r1 and even stronger with gcc 4.5 and
glibc 2.12+, afaict), but they really are divided into two categories:

- might overflow (depends on combination of parameters and variables the
compiler can't completely untangle);
- _will_ overflow (whenever that code path is hit, an overflow will

The former we should highlight but not die upon; the latter, though...

As Mike and me expressed on the linked bug, code that is built with that
warning is code that is going to crash as surely as

char *foo = NULL;
foo[3] = 'a';

which could result in nasty surprises for users (see [2] for the whole

Now, we've not seen "proper" false positives (in the Portage sense I
mean — because even if the C library hits a false positive, it _will_
crash with an abort() from its own code!), but Kumba pointed me at a
case that wasn't entirely clear, and took a bit of detective work to
track down [3] so you could have users report issues you cannot easily
identify or reproduce. I cannot make promises, but if all else fail I'll
see to be around to help you with those cases.

So if you want to have your say, gentoo-qa is there for that.

Thank you,


Diego Elio Pettenò — “Flameeyes”

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Re: [gentoo-dev] Portage to die on sure-enough _FORTIFY_SOURCE overflows
-- Alec Warner
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Updated Aug 26, 2011

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