(OpenBSD Issues Fix) Sudo Race Condition in Processing Command Pathnames Lets Local Users Execute Arbitrary Commands
SecurityTracker Alert ID: 1014249|
SecurityTracker URL: http://securitytracker.com/id/1014249
(Links to External Site)
Updated: Jun 29 2005|
Original Entry Date: Jun 21 2005
Execution of arbitrary code via local system, User access via local system|
Fix Available: Yes Vendor Confirmed: Yes |
Version(s): 1.3.1 up to and including 1.6.8p8|
A vulnerability was reported in sudo. A local user can execute arbitrary commands.|
In a certain configuration, a local user can exploit a race condition to execute arbitrary commands on the target system. If there is a sudoers 'ALL' entry that follows the local user's sudoers entry, then the flaw can be exploited.
The vendor credits Charles Morris with reporting this vulnerability.
A local user can execute arbitrary commands in certain cases.|
OpenBSD has released a fix for OpenBSD-current and the 3.6 and 3.7 -stable branches. Patches for OpenBSD 3.6 and 3.7 are available at:|
Vendor URL: www.sudo.ws/sudo/alerts/path_race.html (Links to External Site)
Access control error, State error|
|Underlying OS: UNIX (OpenBSD)|
|Underlying OS Comments: 3.6, 3.7|
This archive entry is a follow-up to the message listed below.|
Source Message Contents
Subject: security fix for sudo available|
A race condition in Sudo's command pathname handling could allow
a user with Sudo privileges to run arbitrary commands.
When a user runs a command via Sudo, the inode and device numbers
of the command are compared to those of commands with the same
basename found in the sudoers file (see the Background paragraph
for more information). When a match is found, the path to the
matching command listed in the sudoers file is stored in the
variable safe_cmnd, which is later used to execute the command.
Because the actual path executed comes from the sudoers file
and not directly from the user, Sudo should be safe from race
conditions involving symbolic links. However, if a sudoers
entry containing the pseudo-command ALL follows the user's
sudoers entry the contents of safe_cmnd will be overwritten
with the path the user specified on the command line, making
Sudo vulnerable to the aforementioned race condition.
Exploitation of the bug requires that the user be allowed to
run one or more commands via Sudo and be able to create symbolic
links in the filesystem. Furthermore, a sudoers entry giving
another user access to the ALL pseudo-command must follow the
user's sudoers entry for the race to exist.
For example, the following sudoers file is not affected by the
Whereas this one would be:
The problem has been fixed in OpenBSD-current as well as the
3.6 and 3.7 -stable branches. Patches for OpenBSD 3.6 and 3.7
are also available:
The administrator can order the sudoers file such that all
entries granting Sudo ALL privileges precede all other entries.
This problem was brought to my attention by Charles Morris.
The reason Sudo uses the inode for command matching is to make
relative paths work and to avoid problems caused by automounters
where the path to be executed is not the same as the absolute
path to the command.
Another possible approach is to use the realpath() function to
find the true path. Sudo does not user realpath() because that
function is not present in all operating systems and is often
vulnerable to race conditions where it does exist.