PreOS Security releases CHIPSEC quickref for SysAdmins

[Disclaimer: I work for PreOS Security.]

CHIPSEC is a suite of dozens of tests/tools/utilities, many of which are strictly for security researchers. Timed with SysAdmin Appreciation Day, PreOS Security has created a 1-page quick reference for CHIPSEC for sysadmins. The below message also mentions an upcoming short ebook for sysadmins:

Currently this quickref is only availble by filling out a form:


on the PreOS Security site, with some opt-in stuff to help the new startup.

PS: PreOS Security has joined the Twitosphere(sp), first post above. And we have a LinkedIn page. Please ‘Follow us’. Thanks!



Alex updates smmtestbuildscript for Fedora 26 and QEMU 2.9

A while ago[1], Alex Floyd of PreOS Security wrote a shell script to help codify this wiki article[2] by Laslo Ersek of Red Hat, setting up a UEFI SMM/OVMF testing environment for Fedora-based systems. Recently, Alex updated this script to work with the recently-released Fedora 26. Quoting email from Alex on the changes in this release:

The build script has been updated for Fedora 26 support. It now uses the native QEMU 2.9 library from Fedora 26 and no longer builds a snapshot of QEMU 2.9 which makes some new testing possibilities available.


[1] https://firmwaresecurity.com/2017/04/19/shell-script-for-laszlos-smm-test-environment-article/

[2] https://github.com/tianocore/tianocore.github.io/wiki/Testing-SMM-with-QEMU,-KVM-and-libvirt



Paul’s Intel AMT overview

A few days ago, Paul English of PreOS Security wrote a blog post giving an brief overview of the recent Intel AMT vulnerability.

[Note: We’re going to try and post a blog entry for major firmware vulnerabilities that impact enterprises, and the recent Intel AMT vulnerability seems like a good place to start.]


[Disclaimer: I work with Paul, at PreOS Security.]




There’s a relatively new GUI front-end to the command line-based CHIPSEC project, called CHISPEC_GUI. This GUI for chipsec 1.2.5 provides a fairly simple design but lets you select each module that you want to run. It is made with PyQt4. It is getting updated to Chipsec 1.3.0 with the appropriate module additions written into the GUI. It was originally written in Persian by Emad Helmi, and translated to English by Alex Floyd of PreOS-Security.

English version:

Forked from Persian version:


Shell script for Laszlo’s SMM test environment article

Laszlo Ersek of Red Hat wrote a wiki article on tianocore.org[1], showing how to setup the EDK2 with QEMU/OVMF for testing SMM code using Fedora.

Recently, Alex Floyd of PreOS Security wrote a shell script to codify this wiki article[2].

Laszlo’s wiki is dense, I expect this script will be useful for some UEFI firmware engineers and security researchers.

According to Alex, “some things needed tweaking to get to work, and the Windows portion of the tutorial is not included in the script.”

[1] https://github.com/tianocore/tianocore.github.io/wiki/Testing-SMM-with-QEMU,-KVM-and-libvirt

[2] https://github.com/gencymex/smmtestbuildscript



UEFI lab at Cascadia IT Conference in Seattle March 10th

[DISCLAIMER: FirmwareSecurity is my personal blog. I work at PreOS Security.]

PreOs Security is offering a half-day training lab for System Administrators, SRE/DevOps in the Seattle area at Cascadia IT Conference, for those interested in learning about UEFI/ACPI/BIOS/SMM/etc security. Here’s the text for the training:

Defending System Firmware

Target audience: System administrators, SRE, DevOps who work with Intel UEFI-based server hardware

Most enterprises only defend operating system and application software; system and peripheral firmware (eg., BIOS, UEFI, PCIe, Thunderbolt, USB, etc) has many attack vectors. This workshop targets enterprise system administrators responsible for maintaining the security of their systems. The workshop is: an introduction to UEFI system firmware, an overview of the NIST secure BIOS platform lifecycle model of SP-(147,147b,155) and how to integrate that into normal enterprise hardware lifecycle management, and an introduction to the available open source firmware security tools created by security researchers and others, and how to integrate UEFI-based systems into the NIST lifecycle using available tools, to help protect your enterprise. It will be a 3.5 hour presentation, and at the end, you can optionally can run some tests on your laptop: Intel CHIPSEC, Linux UEFI Validation distribution (LUV-live), FirmWare Test Suite live boot distribution (FWTS-live), and a few other tools. Attendees trying to participate in the lab will need to have a modern Intel x86 or x64-based (not AMD), UEFI-based firmware, running Windows or Linux OS software. That means no AMD systems, no Apple Macbooks, no ARM systems. Any system used in the lab must have all data backed up, in case some tool bricks the device. Attendees should understand the basics of system hardware/firmware, be able to use a shell (eg, bash, cmd.exe, UEFI Shell), and able to use Python-based scripts.



announcing PreOS Security Inc.

FirmwareSecurity.com is my personal blog. I use it to post information about firmware as I come across it, in the hope that it might help others. I try to keep it impersonal and only focus on news/information, but my bias towards open source HW/FW/SW is not hard to find.

I started the blog a few years ago to learn firmware by focusing on the security perspective of firmware and learning from existing security researchers. I’d been doing OS-level driver consulting for a while, and was moving from OS-level moving down into firmware. Along the way, I’ve learned a lot and given talks and training on firmware security at LinuxFest Northwest, B-Sides PDX, SOURCE Seattle, and other places.

With great advice from both firmware engineers as well as firmware security researchers, I’ve seen an opportunity to help secure enterprises at the firmware level.

I’ve started a small new company, PreOS Security Inc.,  https://preossec.com/ . Besides attending the last UEFI Plugfest, we’ve been mostly in ‘stealth mode’, busy working on code. We have a small group of advisors who are teaching us lots of things about security/b2b/tool startups.

We’re creating a product to help enterprises secure their system firmware, as per NIST SP 800-147 guidance. We’re leveraging the expertise of existing firmware security researchers, and some of their tools (for example CHIPSEC). We’re also writing new tools to fill in some of the gaps. Our product is currently in a pre-alpha stage, and are looking for a few enterprises who’re eager to secure their firmware to work on the alpha release.

We have a draft document on ‘enterprise firmware guidance’ that we’ll be publishing on our web site (and Github), as well as that ‘awesome firmware’ links that I’ve been promising in previous blog posts. We have some patches to existing tools that we need to upstream.

We also offer training to UEFI/ACPI device vendor QA teams, data centers, and security-minded enterprises, on using firmware security tools, and consulting to customize/integrate these tools. We’ve got a half-day training event that we’ll announce shortly.

We need a Python developer, either as a partner, or a few as contractors. Currently we have equity to offer. For more information, see:  https://preossec.com/careers/ .

We’re currently self-funded, hoping to fund our product development with training/consulting. But to offer more than equity, we’ve begun looking at some other sources of funding. If there are any firmware-friendly angel investors reading this, we should talk.