[refpolicy] ANN: Reference Policy contrib repository

Daniel J Walsh dwalsh at redhat.com
Mon Sep 12 15:45:53 CDT 2011

Hash: SHA1

On 09/09/2011 12:28 PM, Christopher J. PeBenito wrote:
> On 09/09/11 12:22, Guido Trentalancia wrote:
>> On Fri, 2011-09-09 at 11:35 -0400, Christopher J. PeBenito
>> wrote:
>>> The challenge of Reference Policy has always been balancing the
>>> needs of having a well reviewed policy against responding to
>>> fairly rapid application development and new user needs in
>>> Linux.  If you are not familiar with the differences between
>>> the Reference Policy and Fedora policy, it is quite large.
>>> Since Fedora is the largest SELinux-enabled distribution, its
>>> development version, rawhide, is on the front lines of seeing
>>> new features in apps.  Due to Dan and Miroslav's extensive
>>> work, the Fedora policy evolves rapidly.  However, this has
>>> proven to be too fast for me to constantly review all the
>>> changes and integrate them upstream, resulting in the huge
>>> difference between the two policies.
>>> To ameliorate this situation, additional contributors with
>>> commit access have been added for Reference Policy.  To be
>>> specific, a large amount of the policy has been moved into a
>>> contrib layer (a git submodule), where these contributors may
>>> commit.  The core policy modules will remain in the primary
>>> Reference Policy repository, for which I remain the maintainer.
>>> Due to its nature, the contrib repository will be faster moving
>>> and less reviewed than the core Reference Policy repository.
>>> The core modules are critical modules on the system.  This
>>> includes all of the kernel layer, most of the system and roles
>>> layers, some admin modules, such as bootloader, su, and sudo,
>>> and userspace object managers.  It is possible to build a
>>> policy using only the core modules.  It is important to ensure
>>> these modules are well reviewed to ensure quality, so Reference
>>> Policy can be used as a base for both general-purpose systems
>>> (e.g. Linux distributions) and custom systems.  All remaining
>>> modules were moved to the contrib repository.  An important
>>> thing to note is that in the future, modules may move between
>>> core and contrib as necessary.
>>> For those that have a current checkout of the repository, you
>>> will need to do the following to get the new contrib
>>> submodule:
>>> $ git pull $ git submodule init $ git submodule update
>> Is such "contrib" submodule going to always remain optional ?
> Its optional in the sense that you don't have to use any modules
> from it.  The core modules do have some optionals that reference
> contrib modules, so you need to have the submodule checked out so
> that those interfaces can resolve.  However, there should be no
> unconditional references from core modules to anything in contrib.

AS we move to this new format, I would suggest we require multiple at
least 2 ACKs to get a policy update.  I don't think Fedora team should
just dump our policy into the contrib without having someone review it.

Dominick Grift has done a lot of work in this space and if he would be
willing to help that would be great.

Anyone else who would like to volunteer.  I think Miroslav and I have
to work to get the Rawhide/F16 policy based off the new structure and
then make the Fedora policy available for others to begin acking.
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