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Re: auth allowing access to logs only?

From: David James <james_at_cs.toronto.edu>
Date: 2007-02-05 17:44:16 CET

On 2/4/07, Tom Ketola <tom@solidstatenetworks.com> wrote:
> At 11:09 AM 2/4/2007, David James wrote:
> >On 2/4/07, Ben Collins-Sussman <sussman@red-bean.com> wrote:
> >>My gut tells me that this a pretty unusual use-case; we've designed
> >>svn's security just around 'read' and 'write' concepts, and 'being
> >>able to see history' falls clearly into the 'read' case in our model.
> >>
> >>In fact, we've bent over backwards to make sure that if a revision
> >>affects paths that are unreadable (to the user running 'svn log'),
> >>then the log info is *not* displayed. The assumption is that log
> >>messages are generally at least as sensitive as the code itself. Log
> >>messages can still give away exactly what people are doing, what
> >>sub-tasks they're working on, and even how they're implementing
> >>things. (Note that the revision itself still shows up in the history,
> >>just without any log message displayed.)
> >
> >Does the current model really make sense? It's certainly possible that
> >users could encode top-secret information in their log messages, but
> >this isn't always the case. For example, the log message "Initial
> >import from CVS" is useful, but isn't top-secret. Even if the code
> >itself is secret, the log message might not be.
> This is the case with us for sure. Although you may be able to
> extract some information from the log messages that could be useful,
> overall I'm not really that concerned with it. My concern is the
> source code itself getting out, not how exactly things are
> implemented in our source.
> >Permission checks on log messages are also particularly expensive. If
> >you import a million files into a Subversion repository with an
> >"initial import" log message, Subversion will force any user who wants
> >to view that log message to wait for a million Apache permission-check
> >subrequests to finish. I've seen repositories where it takes hours to
> >simply run "svn log" on a single file because the log-message
> >permission checks are so expensive.
> >
> >It might make sense to allow users to configure their log-message
> >permissions separately, so as to avoid this bottleneck, without
> >turning off permissions completely. Perhaps we should simply setup a
> >"SVNLogMessageAuthz Off'" flag? This flag would disable authz for log
> >messages, therefore allowing any user who has any access to the
> >repository to also access log messages. Tom, would this flag help with
> >your use case?
> >
> >(By the way: What happened to the artem-soc-work branch? This branch
> >should substantially improve the performance of log message permission
> >checks.)
> Yes, this seems like it should work. Correct me if I'm wrong, but
> using this method, any user that I added into Apache's permissions,
> regardless of whether I added them into the svn authorization file
> would then be able to read log messages? If a user had no account at
> all on our system, then they would be unable to access the database
> at all, and therefore would not be able to read log messages,
> correct? If those cases our true, then your solution would
> definitely address my issue.

Yes, this is correct.

Tom, if you would like to submit a patch to implement this feature,
with an appropriate log message, I would be happy to review it. Just
add me to the CC list when you submit your patch. If you have
questions about how to implement this just send your



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Received on Mon Feb 5 17:44:40 2007

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