[coreboot] Binary situation

Rudolf Marek r.marek at assembler.cz
Mon Dec 23 23:21:56 CET 2013

Hi all


Some time ago Patrick started a https://www.coreboot.org/Binary_situation page 
which I updated in the past days. It monitors the various blobs and firmwares in 
the Intel and AMD systems. Good news is that Roxfan and I managed to get some 
ideas about AMD XHCI firmware and I added also some information about SMU, GEC 
and IMC firmwares. The page has some links were you can get more detailed 
information. As for now it looks we now know all processors types for each 
firmware :)

Please don't expect more about that, it could be small step for some future 
"free" firmwares, but for me it current state enough.

As for the AMD systems, XHCI firmware "bad" intentions can be most likely 
stopped by IOMMU, same is valid for "GEC". IMC can be safely left unused. This 
leaves only the SMU firmware which may or may not have some DMA capability.

As for the Intel systems, my biggest fear is ME firmware, which is even designed 
to do things sideways.

 From all above think best would be to concentrate on VGA BIOS replacements and 
possibly a MRC.bin replacement, which runs on x86 CPU. I'm considering the rest 
of the firmwares as part of the hardware although it would  be nice to audit at 
least the function which could be now possible even it will take long time.

Please try not to start any flamewar about "firmwares should be free" instead 
please help and audit the firmwares or write a replacements.

Please note that even devices without any loadable firmware may do bad things. 
Don't forget about that. Firmwares just gives us good opportunity to see things 
otherwise impossible to see (chip mask rom for example).


More information about the coreboot mailing list