On 26 November 2010 10:50, Orvar Korvar <knatte_fnatte_tja...@yahoo.com> wrote:
> petrben,
> Yes that is my question too: "is running in a local zone safer?". That is why 
> I created this thread.

Yep and I found your question interesting and want to know more as well.
If you are the only administrator on the machine is there any security
benefit of running VBox in the local zone? So far it seems to me that
it doesn't make things worse while there is no clear reason it should
provide any remarkable advantage.
Negative is that you have one more machine to administer and you may
hit more problems later on upgrades etc.

> I was thinking something like this: If someone hacks my WinXP, then he must 
> bypass VBox. Then he is inside the local zone. Then he must get root access 
> to the local zone. Then he must break the zone to get into the global zone. 
> When he is in the global zone, he must gain root access. Then he is in my 
> computer.
> To prevent this, I shut down the NIC to the global zone. Then there is no 
> communication between the global zone and local zones. So how can a hacker 
> inside a local zone, gain access to the global zone? The global zone does not 
> respond to any communication, because it's NIC is down.
> But you say something like: if a hacker takes control over VBox, then he also 
> gets inside the kernelspace and then he bypasses zones and everything and is 
> inside the global zone? He does not have to go through NICs and zones and 
> what not?

I'm not a security expert nor VBox or zones developer. But if the
attacker successfully exploits a hypothetical bug in the VBox driver
he'll be able to corrupt the kernel memory whether it happens in the
local zone or not makes no significant difference.
If he only breaks out the VBox and stays confined in the zone it is of
course "A difference" and even if he manages to get root in the zone
there must be another serious flaw to break out the zone.
On the other side if it happens in the global zone and if there is no
local exploitable bug he'll stay as an ordinary user in the global
zone and other users will be relatively safe.
Crossbow and resource management could be done in the global zone as
well without the need of zone installation. And again in case you are
the only administrator you have no reason to mis-configure the guest
to fill all available memory ...


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