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Date: Tue, 3 Dec 2019 12:34:14 +0000
From: Simon McVittie <>
Subject: Re: virtual consoles

On Mon, 02 Dec 2019 at 08:56:38 -0800, Tavis Ormandy wrote:
> unprivileged users can start a new X server and switch virtual
> console, even over ssh.
> e.g.
> $ dbus-send --system --print-reply --dest=org.freedesktop.login1 /org/freedesktop/login1/seat/seat0 org.freedesktop.login1.Seat.SwitchTo uint32:2

If a uid who is not already the owner of the current VT on the seat can
do this, then that's probably a bug? If you think so, please report it
to the maintainers of logind (which is the component that would have to
change to address this).

I would have expected this to be gated by a check that the uid of the
caller (the D-Bus client, in this case the dbus-send process) matches the
uid of the current VT on that seat (so you can voluntarily switch away
from your own session, but other users can't force you to), or a polkit
check that the caller is root-equivalent, or some combination of those.
In particular, checking that the uid matches the VT's owner's uid would be
enough to let unprivileged X and Wayland servers implement the expected
"switch to other VT" handling for Ctrl+Alt+F1..Ctrl+Alt+F12.


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