[Mono-list] Re: Bootstrapping

Paolo Molaro lupus@ximian.com
Thu, 8 Jul 2004 16:05:05 +0200

On 07/08/04 Jonathan Pryor wrote:
> Besides, between the Mono and PNET projects we've effectively done the
> dual compiler scenario.  For a full "from source" bootstrap you'd just
> need to get PNET's compiler to be able to process the Mono class
> libraries.  This may already be possible, but I haven't tried it.

There is no full "from source" bootstrap, since you have to start
trusting something somewhere (are you sure your video card shows you the
correct stuff? Is the firmware in your hard-drive trustworthy?).
Originally mcs and corlib where compiled with csc on windows, so
paranoid people suppose MS could have injected a trojan. Assuming pnet's
compiler could compile mcs and corlib correctly, would that give any
more guarantees? Nope, since thay had to use the MS compiler to build
their own corlib for much longer than us, the window of opportunity for
the evil MS to inject a trojan on their system was much bigger, so there
is no additional guarantee and people are deluding themselves if they
think there is. An attack on the original mcs binary would have been
very sophitsticated, still someone thinks it would be possible to detect
such an attack by ignoring an equivalently-sophisticated attack.


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