Using Secure Boot for the powers of good

Accepted Session
Short Form
Scheduled: Wednesday, June 19, 2013 from 1:30 – 2:15pm in B301


Secure Boot is a technology for limiting the files that computers will boot. Used wrongly, it restricts user freedom and turns computers into appliances. How can we use it for real improvements in security without losing the ideals of general purpose computing?


UEFI Secure Boot is a specification describing a mechanism for configuring computers to refuse to boot any OS that hasn’t been signed with a trusted key. Most major Linux distributions have now adopted solutions for handling it, and now people are beginning to consider how we can take advantage of it. This presentation will provide a brief introduction to UEFI Secure Boot and the approaches the free software community have taken to dealing with it, but will focus on how we can use it to gain genuine security benefits and improve confidence in cloud computing.

Speaking experience

I've spoken on a range of technical topics at multiple conferences. In 2012 I was picked as one of the best 4 presentations at ( I keynoted the Southern California Linux Expo this year ( and have been invited to keynote at Linuxtag. I presented on UEFI Secure Boot at Bluehat, the Microsoft security conference, in December 2012.