Friday, March 18, 2016

CPUID, SMSW, and Other Delights

I wrote a quick and dirty utility to collect info a la redpill, nopill (props to Danny Quist but I can't find that whitepaper anymore!), etc. Nothing really novel about it, but I thought others may find it useful for researchy scenarios. I used it to investigate a hypervisor running on an Intel microprocessor, so each output line includes an indication of whether VMX appears to be supported. My intent was to train a Bayes learner to identify systems that are lying about whether they support VMX (thus likely detecting a hypervisor), similar to a previous project of mine, except in the course of this project, that became so very unnecessary.

Here is a snippet of its output:

So hex. Much flashy.
This tool works by creating and affinitizing a thread to each logical CPU in the system, executing a few compiler intrinsics and assembly functions, and outputting the desired information for each CPU. Like most research code I post, this tool is only as complete as I needed it to be for my own purposes. Therefore, it does not support 32-bit platforms, does not collect the value of the SLDT instruction from each processor, and is not meant for AMD microprocessors. If you can tolerate all that, then the source code is here:

For more information about CPUID and using microprocessor instructions, I thought the book Professional Assembly Language Programming was very helpful, and of course, the Intel 64 and IA-32 microprocessor manuals are the authoritative reference on all things Intel x86 and x64.

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