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Date: Sat, 2 May 2015 15:53:30 +0300
From: Solar Designer <>
To: Wen Xu <>
Cc:, Vasily Kulikov <>
Subject: Re: CVE request for a fixed bug existed in all versions of linux kernel from KeenTeam


I expect MITRE will assign a CVE ID.

On Sat, May 02, 2015 at 06:31:12PM +0800, Wen Xu wrote:
> Recently we found a use-after-free bug which can lead to kernel arbitrary
> execution in Linux kernel.
> The bug was reported to the linux security group and it has been fixed.(commit
> a134f083e79f ("ipv4: Missing sk_nulls_node_init() in ping_unhash()"). You
> can find the fix commit here:

More specifically:

> The bug exists in all versions of linux kernel.

"All" as in "all upstream versions that contain the feature at all
(3.0+), and likely some backports".  It appears the bug got introduced
in Vasily's forward-porting of the functionality to newer 2.6.x kernels
before it finally got merged in this thread:

Vasily's patch against RHEL5 kernels that we still use in Owl looks
unaffected.  It has:

+               write_lock_bh(&ping_table.lock);
+               sk_del_node_init(sk);
+               sock_put(sk);

where sk_del_node_init() calls sk_node_init(), which does
"node->pprev = NULL;"  I'd like Vasily to double-check this, though.

> And the credit is to Wen Xu and wushi of KeenTeam.

Cool!  How did you find this bug?  Did/do you actively search for more
bugs with usage of these and similar kernel interfaces?  (I think
someone should!)

Do you have a reproducer (non-weaponized exploit) that you could post?

Is my understanding correct that to trigger the bug you need direct
access to a ping socket, not indirect via the ping utility (if that is
enabled at all)?  By default, access to ping sockets is disabled:

	 * Sane defaults - nobody may create ping sockets.
	 * Boot scripts should set this to distro-specific group.
	net->ipv4.ping_group_range.range[0] = make_kgid(&init_user_ns, 1);
	net->ipv4.ping_group_range.range[1] = make_kgid(&init_user_ns, 0);

and distros are supposed to enable it selectively - e.g., on Owl we
enable it for group _icmp only:


# Range of group IDs permitted to access non-raw (datagram) ICMP sockets.
# These are an Openwall extension to the Linux kernel.  Our ping(1) program is
# able to use these sockets, which enables it to start and run without
# requiring root privileges nor a capability.  Access to these sockets is
# restricted at all primarily in order to reduce direct exposure of the added
# kernel code to potential attacks.  In other words, we gain privilege
# separation due to keeping this access restricted and installing ping(1) SGID.
net.ipv4.ping_group_range = 111 111

and install ping as:

-rwx--s--x 1 root _icmp 34336 Aug 14  2012 /bin/ping

So there's a layer of privsep here.

I'd like us to learn something useful from this.  Maybe it's "don't add
more code to the kernel, even if it's for security" - but we knew that,
and this is why there's the layer of privsep mentioned above (to make
things no worse than before even in presence of bugs in the new code).

Are there distros that enable access to ping sockets for all users by

Then, perhaps we should harden the poison pointers to be either below
typical mmap_min_addr or in an unmapped portion of kernel space?  Do I
understand correctly that, short of possible mmap_min_addr bypasses in
general (if relevant), this would mitigate the issue?

Right now, they are:

 * These are non-NULL pointers that will result in page faults
 * under normal circumstances, used to verify that nobody uses
 * non-initialized list entries.
#define LIST_POISON1  ((void *) 0x00100100 + POISON_POINTER_DELTA)
#define LIST_POISON2  ((void *) 0x00200200 + POISON_POINTER_DELTA)

I'd change them to e.g.:

#define LIST_POISON1  ((void *) 0x00000100 + POISON_POINTER_DELTA)
#define LIST_POISON2  ((void *) 0x00000200 + POISON_POINTER_DELTA)

where POISON_POINTER_DELTA would normally be 0 on 32-bit x86, so they'd
be below mmap_min_addr on that arch.  Meanwhile, a mitigation appears to
be to set mmap_min_addr higher than 0x00200200 (slightly over 2 MB), but
that's not great as it leaves significantly less ASCII-armored space for

BTW, it appears that on x86_64 POISON_POINTER_DELTA is
0xdead000000000000 by default, which I guess would hit an unmapped page
even with the current LIST_POISON2 value?  If so, is the bug at worst a
kernel Oops on x86_64 unless someone changed POISON_POINTER_DELTA in
their build?

	default 0 if X86_32
	default 0xdead000000000000 if X86_64

Regardless, as a supporter of that kernel patch, I am embarrassed!



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