ISS Security Advisory: Remote Logic Flaw Vulnerability in HP-UX Line Printer Daemon

From: X-Force (
Date: 11/20/01

Date: Tue, 20 Nov 2001 14:32:44 -0500
Message-Id: <>
From: X-Force <>
Subject: ISS Security Advisory: Remote Logic Flaw Vulnerability in HP-UX Line Printer Daemon


Internet Security Systems Security Advisory
November 20, 2001

Remote Logic Flaw Vulnerability in HP-UX Line Printer Daemon


Internet Security Systems (ISS) X-Force has discovered a vulnerability
in the HP-UX line printer daemon (rlpdaemon). This vulnerability may
allow a remote or local attacker to execute arbitrary code with
superuser privilege.

Affected Versions:

HP-UX 10.01
HP-UX 10.10
HP-UX 10.20
HP-UX 11.00
HP-UX 11.11


The line printer daemon allows printer sharing over a network of Unix
computers. HP-UX is shipped with a line printer daemon adapted from BSD
Unix. The HP line printer daemon is similar to "in.lpd" in other Unix

A vulnerability exists in rlpdaemon that may allow remote attackers to
send specially-crafted print requests, which can be used to create
arbitrary files or directories on the target system. Given the ability
to write to arbitrary files, remote attackers may gain access to the
target system.

The rlpdaemon daemon is enabled by default and executed with superuser
privilege. This vulnerability can be successfully exploited with no
local account or specific knowledge of the target systemís configuration.


ISS X-Force recommends that all system administrators who have not
implemented network printing should immediately disable rlpdaemon and
any other unused services. HP will make the following patches available
to address the vulnerability described in this advisory:

HP-UX 10.01 PHCO_25107
HP-UX 10.10 PHCO_25108
HP-UX 10.20 PHCO_25109
HP-UX 11.00 PHCO_25110
HP-UX 11.11 PHCO_25111

To access these patches when they become available, visit:

ISS X-Force will provide detection and assessment support for these
vulnerabilities in upcoming X-Press Updates for RealSecure Network
Sensor and Internet Scanner.

Additional Information:

The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the
name CAN-2001-0817 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in
the CVE list, which standardizes names for
security problems.

HP Security Bulletin #00176,

ISS X-Force Database,


This vulnerability was discovered and researched by Mark Dowd and Kris
Hunt of Internet Security Systems. ISS would like to thank HP for their
response and handling of this vulnerability.


About Internet Security Systems (ISS)
Internet Security Systems is a leading global provider of security
management solutions for the Internet, protecting digital assets and
ensuring safe and uninterrupted e-business. With its industry-leading
intrusion detection and vulnerability assessment, remote managed
security services, and strategic consulting and education offerings, ISS
is a trusted security provider to more than 8,000 customers worldwide
including 21 of the 25 largest U.S. commercial banks and the top 10 U.S.
telecommunications companies. Founded in 1994, ISS is headquartered in
Atlanta, GA, with additional offices throughout North America and
international operations in Asia, Australia, Europe, Latin America and
the Middle East. For more information, visit the Internet Security
Systems web site at or call 888-901-7477.

Copyright (c) 2001 Internet Security Systems, Inc. All rights reserved

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of this Alert in any other medium excluding electronic medium, please
e-mail for permission.


The information within this paper may change without notice. Use of
this information constitutes acceptance for use in an AS IS condition.
There are NO warranties with regard to this information. In no event
shall the author be liable for any damages whatsoever arising out of or
in connection with the use or spread of this information. Any use of
this information is at the user's own risk.
X-Force PGP Key available at: as
well as on MIT's PGP key server and's key server.

Please send suggestions, updates, and comments to: X-Force
of Internet Security Systems, Inc.

X-Force Vulnerability and Threat Database:

Please send suggestions, updates, and comments to:
X-Force of Internet Security Systems, Inc.

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