C considered harmful: was Debian attacker may have used new exploit

Henry Spencer henry-lqW1N6Cllo0sV2N9l4h3zg at public.gmane.org
Fri Dec 5 04:05:48 UTC 2003

On Thu, 4 Dec 2003, Peter Hiscocks wrote:
> Interesting examples. Given that any code can be executed by a Turing
> machine (albeit somewhat slowly ;), I would bet that it is possible to do
> all these things in a way that separates the code and the data (ie, without
> generating code on the fly), but possibly not in a way that satisfies the
> current speed requirements.

Exactly.  This is pure performance optimization.  But it's a very powerful
one which can make a huge difference. 

> ...it might even become more feasible to avoid what is effectively
> 'self modifying code' as processors get faster and memory gets cheaper.

Don't forget that the problems grow too.  For example, considering the
network-routing application, the networks are getting faster at about the
same pace as the CPUs, so you don't *get* an advantage by waiting. 

                                                          Henry Spencer
                                                       henry-lqW1N6Cllo0sV2N9l4h3zg at public.gmane.org

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