NetBSD LOCAL_CREDS fails when no supplementary groups

Todd Allan todd_allan at
Mon Nov 20 11:33:22 PST 2006

Hello, I've run into a snag sending D-Bus messages on a recent 
NetBSD-current in single-user mode.  The check that fails is:

dbus-sysdeps-unix.c: _dbus_read_credentials_unix_socket():

   if (cmsg.hdr.cmsg_len < sizeof (cmsg) || cmsg.hdr.cmsg_type != SCM_CREDS)
       dbus_set_error (error, DBUS_ERROR_FAILED,
                       "Message from recvmsg() was not SCM_CREDS");

In NetBSD's case, at least, struct sockcred contains a variable-length 
array of "supplemental groups", that may contain zero entries:

     int     sc_ngroups;     /* number of supplemental groups */
     gid_t   sc_groups[1];   /* variable length */

The struct sockcred transmitted with the control message will contain as 
many sc_groups entries as specified by sc_ngroups.  If sc_ngroups == 0, 
cmsg.hdr.cmsg_len will include zero sc_groups entries, and will be 4 
bytes smaller than the sizeof(cmsg), which includes a single entry.

Processes spawned from the init process context, which has zero 
supplemental groups in its kauth_cred_t, and which do not have an 
ancestor that performs a setgroups(2), as does login(1), hit this case.

I'm new to this area and am not sure if NetBSD's behavior is 
unconventional and should perhaps be changed (say, pad out a dummy 
sc_groups entry), or whether it is reasonable to modify D-Bus to handle 
this case.  NetBSD provides a SOCKCREDSIZE() macro that could help check 
the received size against the sc_ngroups field, but I haven't looked 
into the portability across all platforms with LOCAL_CREDS or CMSGCRED.

Any advice on how to proceed appreciated, thanks,


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