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What Linux-on-Linux virtualization technologies provide user isolation? Specifically, I want root in the virtual machine not to have any privilege on the host.

This was not the case for LXC, but was a long-term goal. Is root isolation available in recent versions? If so, which?

Apart from LXC, what is the status of root isolation for OpenVZ, VServer and any other contender?

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What do you mean by "not any"? There needs to be at least a common filesystem or LV/partition somewhere and/or a memory segment for the graphic-card. –  Nils Dec 24 '11 at 22:38
    
@Nils At most the root user in the VM must have no more privileges than the host user invoking the VM. –  Gilles Dec 26 '11 at 9:48

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Most "lightweight" virtualization solutions are more or less based on the chroot-idea - with hidden processes from the "master". I did not see any CERTs about problems there but this does not seem to be what you are searching for.

A Hypervisor approach might be more the direction you are looking for - but I would not count that as "lightweight" (also a PV XEN DomU is pretty fast). Strictly speaking the Dom0 does not start the DomU - it tells the Hypervisor to do so - but there have beens CERTs about priviledge escalation (VMWare ESX and XEN). I don`t know about Hyper-V though.

For a better isolation of user rights - where there is a user-space process spawning an "isolated" VM there is VirtualBox - but again - not lightweight. This is full virtualization, but the VMs can be started as "normal" user. The user has to have access to the underlying disk - and if you want/need to - usb-devices.

Apart from that there is a kernel module for the networking stuff, which seems to work quite well (using DKMS).

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