Home    |    View Topics    |    Search    |    Contact Us    |   



Category:   Application (Generic)  >   InPerson Vendors:   SGI (Silicon Graphics)
SGI InPerson inpview Environment Variable Input Validation Error Lets Local Users Gain Root Privileges
SecurityTracker Alert ID:  1012894
SecurityTracker URL:
CVE Reference:   GENERIC-MAP-NOMATCH   (Links to External Site)
Date:  Jan 14 2005
Impact:   Execution of arbitrary code via local system, Root access via local system
Exploit Included:  Yes  

Description:   iDEFENSE reported a vulnerability in SGI's InPerson in the inpview application. A local user can obtain root privileges.

The utility is configured with set user id (setuid) root user privileges. A local user can set the SUN_TTSESSION_CMD environment variable to a specially crafted command and then invoke inpview to cause the specified command to be executed with root privileges.

A demonstration exploit value is provided:

cp /bin/jsh /tmp/jsh;chmod 6755 /tmp/jsh;killall -9 inpview,

The vendor was notified on January 6, 2005.

iDEFENSE Labs discovered this flaw.

The original advisory is available at:

Impact:   A local user can execute arbitrary commands with root privileges.
Solution:   No solution was available at the time of this entry. The vendor indicates that the product is no longer supported and no patch will be issued for this vulnerability.

The report indicates that, as a workaround, you can remove the setuid bit from inpview:

chmod u-s /usr/lib/InPerson/inpview

Vendor URL: (Links to External Site)
Cause:   Input validation error
Underlying OS:  UNIX (SGI/IRIX)
Underlying OS Comments:  6.5

Message History:   None.

 Source Message Contents

Subject:  iDEFENSE Security Advisory 01.13.05: SGI IRIX inpview Design Error

SGI IRIX inpview Design Error Vulnerability

iDEFENSE Security Advisory 01.13.05
January 13, 2005


The inpview program is a setuid root application that is included in the

InPerson networked multimedia conferencing tool. InPerson networked 
multimedia conferencing tool is included in SGI IRIX.


Local exploitation of a design error vulnerability in the inpview 
command included in multiple versions of Silicon Graphics Inc.'s IRIX 
could allow for arbitrary code execution as the root user. 

The vulnerability specifically exists due to the fact that inpview 
trusts the user environment and does not drop privileges. When the 
environment variable SUN_TTSESSION_CMD is something such as "cp /bin/jsh

/tmp/jsh;chmod 6755 /tmp/jsh;killall -9 inpview," the chain of commands 
will be executed with root permissions, thus allowing a regular user to 
drop a setuid and setgid shell to /tmp.


All that is required to exploit this vulnerability is a local account 
and an open X display, which could be the attacker's home machine or 
another compromised system. Exploitation does not require any knowledge 
of application internals, making privilege escalation trivial, even for 
unskilled attackers. 


iDEFENSE has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in SGI IRIX 
version 6.5.9 (feature) and 6.5.22 (maintenance). It is suspected that 
previous and later versions of both the feature and maintenance 
revisions of IRIX 6.5 are also vulnerable.


Only allow trusted users local access to security critical systems.

Alternately, remove the setuid bit from inpview: 

   chmod u-s /usr/lib/InPerson/inpview


Support for the InPerson product did not extend beyond 02/2002 as noted
in the following publication:

As a result, no patch will be issued for this vulnerability.


A Mitre Corp. Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) number has not
been assigned yet.


01/06/2005  Initial vendor notification
01/07/2005  Initial vendor response
01/13/2005  Public disclosure


iDEFENSE Labs is credited with this discovery.

Get paid for vulnerability research


Copyright (c) 2004 iDEFENSE, Inc.

Permission is granted for the redistribution of this alert
electronically. It may not be edited in any way without the express
written consent of iDEFENSE. If you wish to reprint the whole or any
part of this alert in any other medium other than electronically, please
email for permission.

Disclaimer: The information in the advisory is believed to be accurate
at the time of publishing based on currently available information. Use
of the information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
There are no warranties with regard to this information. Neither the
author nor the publisher accepts any liability for any direct, indirect,
or consequential loss or damage arising from use of, or reliance on,
this information.

Go to the Top of This SecurityTracker Archive Page

Home   |    View Topics   |    Search   |    Contact Us

This web site uses cookies for web analytics. Learn More

Copyright 2022, LLC