Kernel Update for SUSE Linux
Posted on: 08/09/2004 04:20 AM

An updated kernel has been released for SUSE Linux ______________________________________________________________________________ SUSE Security Announcement Package: kernel Announcement-ID: SUSE-SA:2004:024 Date: Monday, Aug 9th 2004 08:50 MEST Affected products: 8.0, 8.1, 8.2, 9.0, 9.1 SUSE Linux Database Server, SUSE eMail Server III, 3.1 SUSE Linux Enterprise Server 7, 8, 9 SUSE Linux Firewall on CD/Admin host SUSE Linux Connectivity Server SUSE Linux Office Server Vulnerability Type: local privilege escalation Severity (1-10): 6 SUSE default package: yes Cross References: CAN-2004-0415 Content of this advisory: 1) security vulnerability resolved: - race condition in file offset pointer handling problem description 2) solution/workaround 3) special instructions and notes 4) package location and checksums 5) pending vulnerabilities, solutions, workarounds: - gaim - mozilla/firebird 6) standard appendix (further information)

______________________________________________________________________________ 1) problem description, brief discussion Paul Starzetz from iSEC informed us about a race condition in the 64bit file offset handling code of the kernel. The file offset pointer (f_pos) is changed during reading, writing, and seeking through a file to point to the current position in a file. The Linux kernel offers a 32bit and a 64bit API. Unfortunately the value conversion between this two APIs as well as the access to the f_pos pointer is defective. These bugs can be abused (mostly with entries in /proc) by a local attacker to gain access to uninitialized kernel memory which may contain sensitive information (root password and alike). Additionally a bug in the implementation of chown(2) for updating inode times, and a denial-of-service condition that can occur while handling signals was fixed. (Please note that the latter patch can cause problems by leaving zombie processes. We are working on a fix.) 2) solution/workaround The is no workaround known for this problem. Please install the update package for the kernel on your system. 3) special instructions and notes SPECIAL INSTALL INSTRUCTIONS: ============================= The following paragraphs will guide you through the installation process in a step-by-step fashion. The character sequence "****" marks the beginning of a new paragraph. In some cases, the steps outlined in a particular paragraph may or may not be applicable to your situation. Therefore, please make sure to read through all of the steps below before attempting any of these procedures. All of the commands that need to be executed are required to be run as the superuser (root). Each step relies on the steps before it to complete successfully. Note: The update packages for the SuSE Linux Enterprise Server 7 (SLES7) are being tested at the moment and will be published as soon as possible. **** Step 1: Determine the needed kernel type Please use the following command to find the kernel type that is installed on your system: rpm -qf /boot/vmlinuz Following are the possible kernel types (disregard the version and build number following the name separated by the "-" character) k_deflt # default kernel, good for most systems. k_i386 # kernel for older processors and chipsets k_athlon # kernel made specifically for AMD Athlon(tm) family processors k_psmp # kernel for Pentium-I dual processor systems k_smp # kernel for SMP systems (Pentium-II and above) k_smp4G # kernel for SMP systems which supports a maximum of 4G of RAM kernel-64k-pagesize kernel-bigsmp kernel-default kernel-smp **** Step 2: Download the package for your system Please download the kernel RPM package for your distribution with the name as indicated by Step 1. The list of all kernel rpm packages is appended below. Note: The kernel-source package does not contain a binary kernel in bootable form. Instead, it contains the sources that the binary kernel rpm packages are created from. It can be used by administrators who have decided to build their own kernel. Since the kernel-source.rpm is an installable (compiled) package that contains sources for the linux kernel, it is not the source RPM for the kernel RPM binary packages. The kernel RPM binary packages for the distributions can be found at the locations below 8.0/images/ 8.1/rpm/i586 8.2/rpm/i586 9.0/rpm/i586 9.1/rpm/i586 After downloading the kernel RPM package for your system, you should verify the authenticity of the kernel rpm package using the methods as listed in section 3) of each SUSE Security Announcement. **** Step 3: Installing your kernel rpm package Install the rpm package that you have downloaded in Steps 3 or 4 with the command rpm -Uhv --nodeps --force <K_FILE.RPM> where <K_FILE.RPM> is the name of the rpm package that you downloaded. Warning: After performing this step, your system will likely not be able to boot if the following steps have not been fully followed. If you run SUSE LINUX 8.1 and haven't applied the kernel update (SUSE-SA:2003:034), AND you are using the freeswan package, you also need to update the freeswan rpm as a dependency as offered by YOU (YaST Online Update). The package can be downloaded from **** Step 4: configuring and creating the initrd The initrd is a ramdisk that is loaded into the memory of your system together with the kernel boot image by the bootloader. The kernel uses the content of this ramdisk to execute commands that must be run before the kernel can mount its actual root filesystem. It is usually used to initialize SCSI drivers or NIC drivers for diskless operation. The variable INITRD_MODULES in /etc/sysconfig/kernel determines which kernel modules will be loaded in the initrd before the kernel has mounted its actual root filesystem. The variable should contain your SCSI adapter (if any) or filesystem driver modules. With the installation of the new kernel, the initrd has to be re-packed with the update kernel modules. Please run the command mk_initrd as root to create a new init ramdisk (initrd) for your system. On SuSE Linux 8.1 and later, this is done automatically when the RPM is installed. **** Step 5: bootloader If you run a SUSE LINUX 8.x, SLES8, or SUSE LINUX 9.x system, there are two options: Depending on your software configuration, you have either the lilo bootloader or the grub bootloader installed and initialized on your system. The grub bootloader does not require any further actions to be performed after the new kernel images have been moved in place by the rpm Update command. If you have a lilo bootloader installed and initialized, then the lilo program must be run as root. Use the command grep LOADER_TYPE /etc/sysconfig/bootloader to find out which boot loader is configured. If it is lilo, then you must run the lilo command as root. If grub is listed, then your system does not require any bootloader initialization. Warning: An improperly installed bootloader may render your system unbootable. **** Step 6: reboot If all of the steps above have been successfully completed on your system, then the new kernel including the kernel modules and the initrd should be ready to boot. The system needs to be rebooted for the changes to become active. Please make sure that all steps have completed, then reboot using the command shutdown -r now or init 6 Your system should now shut down and reboot with the new kernel. 4) package location and checksums Please download the update package for your distribution and verify its integrity by the methods listed in section 3) of this announcement. Then, install the package using the command "rpm -Fhv file.rpm" to apply the update. Our maintenance customers are being notified individually. The packages are being offered to install from the maintenance web. x86 Platform: SUSE Linux 9.1: 7c85b0457972f99ea4ac84a4c14aa11d 7eba8c73098e79b3e4e003c233d63d1e 2f0c3582356994a238460a1ddd11364b b8c993646b760d585391b0bae6e7473e 634d50a5b5aa4b2866536e66b18befeb source rpm(s): 0289c1840b5d5da713feb85c2b8f2fef ab48b1fb238850d2576b7836b700f34c e882ffca04f84c9c2d4a9d8bb7fbd46f b673c013e8d3e59c1cad61e68ac5b2db db2833d74a093e81cecab6a878cceeb8 SUSE Linux 9.0: 32afadf0bc5720c3b6908e8d1930cf5a 2f0b04a5a541dc7e968e34cb673212a0 0de617af99feef4eebcb6acd26e43ec2 4a34622f783ef3cf83e48663a0608983 fabd2effa2e9cd91dac78f1fbee39542 1a33701036c2881de95b870fae0b42bb 2f0b04a5a541dc7e968e34cb673212a0 32afadf0bc5720c3b6908e8d1930cf5a source rpm(s): 432376a5c73031fd92e3b7a5400e74a1 480c2a0ae1a4ef8db0013b7486ba3204 ca1ce8b2b232595dc64ec16894bbbd91 b8a177a4baeb45b356ba4ae3949bbd6b 8dff6fb225cad06f4235b260c78297e6 1ce273d733825abd2013424b85ceb1a5 480c2a0ae1a4ef8db0013b7486ba3204 432376a5c73031fd92e3b7a5400e74a1 SUSE Linux 8.2: 58742cc74f8b1306497f7a4e854e0349 cfa736f8d0331decc43c710ce3e251a9 a1a73c62e658f3fdceb581a1195d6cf0 d33e298380bb61ef06596d1e42bd2211 bfa8c23ef57a2219275ddbadf83f94df cfa736f8d0331decc43c710ce3e251a9 58742cc74f8b1306497f7a4e854e0349 source rpm(s): 346198e849036593f1c7398624204b80 23e10cd0d53d4eaf4a903bce50c27edc 7996319a61e107e03be85aeff8401b2f 8e1e2c7b114a2377e270110d143127fd c05d264136ab3008d2c0202097af5a51 23e10cd0d53d4eaf4a903bce50c27edc 346198e849036593f1c7398624204b80 SUSE Linux 8.1: c87fb98e0efc1875da70b87e053abd12 e266534b5894394a80b704fc69039d85 99d48777da013e06775ede24378301fc 40f9309e12736e355f0625a9bb1419a7 47143e6181adcc0b273b82168e6bd444 e266534b5894394a80b704fc69039d85 c87fb98e0efc1875da70b87e053abd12 source rpm(s): e20c53d0fdb984f13b328694ade10891 fa9cb58e89460b09834c4b27658e12d6 9efc389dda80050045ca0177c1d878ae 54f5e3706bb34d3cf4056aaca2be60b1 1fb22ced69456c133518926bbb24e5ed fa9cb58e89460b09834c4b27658e12d6 e20c53d0fdb984f13b328694ade10891 SUSE Linux 8.0: e08cff6d3391365f1afb099e20a3fe61 77b7a525ca02d0310dacc6532111051b 4d4eba0c559f137b4be6ec8f9a528632 e5c3e41729c02ac28ac9232b146aa4e4 8a2e5b5bbf1bde4533ae984b60f1ad82 e08cff6d3391365f1afb099e20a3fe61 source rpm(s): 09be0e0f30a27ad5af8b3480a091f6a1 7c2a1722f899702ae3b9a08c42c8db4c b47d6b6b14f417902a038325072d63f1 170b51b1b1d04b72d8d12439a5ade0f1 98d8e61a495663a6d6a70e27503826d4 09be0e0f30a27ad5af8b3480a091f6a1 x86-64 Platform: SUSE Linux 9.1: db50c10aef8f142bf9183fe053dcac90 source rpm(s): 91a4d3f953489314a2eaa7b738969232 SUSE Linux 9.0: 3229ea33080c16fec96627a927fd45de 951dc563493357551df1aca30093a85a 51952cafbba877ecafaa3e350168e924 3229ea33080c16fec96627a927fd45de source rpm(s): 72d16b1d90ae62bf00e711328582be43 cb9543e58aa4eb4bcc8b9f8fff796959 e66e38362ad27dca08691c546df003f8 72d16b1d90ae62bf00e711328582be43 ______________________________________________________________________________ 5) Pending vulnerabilities in SUSE Distributions and Workarounds: - gaim The SuSE Security Team discovers various remotely exploitable buffer overflows in the MSN-protocol parsing functions of gaim. The only affected product is SUSE LINUX 9.1. New packages will be available soon. (CAN-2004-0500) - mozilla/firebird We are currently testing new mozilla/firebirds packages that include several fixes for security-related bugs. New packages will be available soon. ______________________________________________________________________________ 6) standard appendix: authenticity verification, additional information - Package authenticity verification: SUSE update packages are available on many mirror ftp servers all over the world. While this service is being considered valuable and important to the free and open source software community, many users wish to be sure about the origin of the package and its content before installing the package. There are two verification methods that can be used independently from each other to prove the authenticity of a downloaded file or rpm package: 1) md5sums as provided in the (cryptographically signed) announcement. 2) using the internal gpg signatures of the rpm package. 1) execute the command md5sum <name-of-the-file.rpm> after you downloaded the file from a SUSE ftp server or its mirrors. Then, compare the resulting md5sum with the one that is listed in the announcement. Since the announcement containing the checksums is cryptographically signed (usually using the key, the checksums show proof of the authenticity of the package. We disrecommend to subscribe to security lists which cause the email message containing the announcement to be modified so that the signature does not match after transport through the mailing list software. Downsides: You must be able to verify the authenticity of the announcement in the first place. If RPM packages are being rebuilt and a new version of a package is published on the ftp server, all md5 sums for the files are useless. 2) rpm package signatures provide an easy way to verify the authenticity of an rpm package. Use the command rpm -v --checksig <file.rpm> to verify the signature of the package, where <file.rpm> is the filename of the rpm package that you have downloaded. Of course, package authenticity verification can only target an un-installed rpm package file. Prerequisites: a) gpg is installed b) The package is signed using a certain key. The public part of this key must be installed by the gpg program in the directory ~/.gnupg/ under the user's home directory who performs the signature verification (usually root). You can import the key that is used by SUSE in rpm packages for SUSE Linux by saving this announcement to a file ("announcement.txt") and running the command (do "su -" to be root): gpg --batch; gpg < announcement.txt | gpg --import SUSE Linux distributions version 7.1 and thereafter install the key "" upon installation or upgrade, provided that the package gpg is installed. The file containing the public key is placed at the top-level directory of the first CD (pubring.gpg) and at . - SUSE runs two security mailing lists to which any interested party may subscribe: - general/linux/SUSE security discussion. All SUSE security announcements are sent to this list. To subscribe, send an email to <>. - SUSE's announce-only mailing list. Only SUSE's security announcements are sent to this list. To subscribe, send an email to <>. For general information or the frequently asked questions (faq) send mail to: <> or <> respectively. ==================================================================== SUSE's security contact is <> or <>. The <> public key is listed below. ==================================================================== ______________________________________________________________________________ The information in this advisory may be distributed or reproduced, provided that the advisory is not modified in any way. In particular, it is desired that the clear-text signature shows proof of the authenticity of the text. SUSE Linux AG makes no warranties of any kind whatsoever with respect to the information contained in this security advisory. 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