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TUCoPS :: HP/UX :: ciacj007.txt

HP Openview Omniback II



                       The U.S. Department of Energy
                    Computer Incident Advisory Capability
                           ___  __ __    _     ___
                          /       |     /_\   /
                          \___  __|__  /   \  \___

                             INFORMATION BULLETIN

                     HP OpenView Omniback II Vulnerability

October 14, 1998 22:00 GMT                                        Number J-007
PROBLEM:       A user can increase privileges or gain invalid access to files
               on an HP OpenView OmniBack II client host.
PLATFORM:      HP9000 series 7/800 running releases 9.X, 10.X, or 11.00.
               Other vendor platforms as noted below.
DAMAGE:        Users can increase privileges.
SOLUTION:      Apply patches and follow instructions noted below.
VULNERABILITY  Risk is medium. A user can elevate privileges therefore it is
ASSESSMENT:    recommended that the patches be applied as soon as possible.

[  Start Hewlett-Packard Advisory  ]

Document ID:  RAF36213ECA
Date Loaded:  19981011
      Title:  Security Vulnerability with HP OpenView Omniback II

- -------------------------------------------------------------------------
       HEWLETT-PACKARD SECURITY BULLETIN:  #00085,  12 Oct. 1998
- -------------------------------------------------------------------------

The information in the following Security Bulletin should be acted upon
as soon as possible.  Hewlett-Packard will not be liable for any
consequences to any customer resulting from customer's failure to fully
implement instructions in this Security Bulletin as soon as possible.

- -------------------------------------------------------------------------
PROBLEM:  A user can increase privileges or gain invalid access to files
          on an HP OpenView OmniBack II client host.

PLATFORM: HP9000 series 7/800 running releases 9.X, 10.X, or 11.00
          Other vendor platforms as noted below.

DAMAGE:   Users can increase privileges.

SOLUTION: Apply patches and follow instructions noted below.

AVAILABILITY: All patches are available now.

- -------------------------------------------------------------------------
   A. Background
   Hewlett-Packard has learned that the HP OpenView OmniBack II product
   (OB) has defects that allow users to gain additional privileges.
   The OB program runs native on HP-UX yet also executes on other
   platforms as noted below.  Updated binaries have been produced for
   those products and should be retrieved and installed.

   OB provides Server support of HP9000 Series 700/800 with HP-UX
   and PC with Windows NT.

   OB provides client support of HP9000 Series 700/800 running HP-UX,
   SunSparc running Solaris, SunSparc running SunOS, RS/6000 running
   AIX, Novell, PCs running Windows 95, PCs running NT, SNI running
   Sinix, SGI IRIX (only EFS and XFS filesystems) and Digital Unix.

   The following versions of OB are affected on all supported
   platforms: OB 2.10 / OB 2.30 / OB 2.55.

   NOTE: OB 2.50 is no longer supported.

   B. Fixing the problem
   Hewlett-Packard Co. recommends obtaining the patches referenced
   below for the Cell Managers (aka Cell Servers) to fix these

   If you are running:
   OBII 2.55 on HP-UX release 10.X with UNIX clients:    PHSS_16473

   OBII 2.55 on HP-UX release 11.X with UNIX clients:    PHSS_16474

   OBII 2.55 on HP-UX release 10.X with Windows clients: PHSS_16533

   OBII 2.55 on HP-UX release 11.X with Windows clients: PHSS_16534

   OBII 2.10 on HP-UX release 9.X:                      *PHSS_16477

   OBII 2.10 on HP-UX release 10.X:                     *PHSS_16478

   OBII 2.30 on Windows NT:                          OMNIBACK_00004
   * Note patch dependencies PHSS_12864 and PSS_12865 for releases

     HP-UX 9.X and 10.X, respectively.

   The patches contain all binaries for all client platforms.

   NOTE: OmniBack II 2.50 has been replaced by 2.55.
         Support for OmniBack II 2.50 has been discontinued.

   This solution is also a part of OmniBack II 3.0.

   C. Recommendations

   With all of the new patches two of the three vulnerabilities
   have been fixed.  Solving or minimizing the third one requires
   additional administrative effort as described below.

   NOTE: Hewlett-Packard Company will not be liable for any
         consequences to any customer resulting from that customer's
         choice of one of the three options to follow.  We recommend
         option E1 (DISABLE pre/post-exec), but only you can
         determine if this is appropriate for your environment.

   OmniBack allows execution of pre-/post-exec commands as root on
   any client system.

   After installing the above mentioned patches and pushing the
   OB Disk Agent module to all OB systems there are two mechanisms
   available within OB that can be combined in order to provide a
   higher level of security:

      1. Restrict EXECUTION of pre/post-exec commands (Option E =

         E1 - DISABLE pre/post-exec
         E2 - RESTRICT pre/post-exec to the lbin directory
         E3 - pre/post-exec completely ENABLED

   NOTE: Option E3 is the current mode of operation.  It has the
         current level of vulnerability and is not recommended.

      2. Restrict ACCESS to OB systems (Option A = Access)
         Option A1 - let OB security restrict ACCESS in the following

            a. OB 2.55 - You can enable the OB internal security
               mechanism to restrict ACCESS to OB inet for all
               systems in a cell.

            b. OB 2.1 - You can use the HP-UX built-in inetd.sec
               in order to restrict client ACCESS to certain
               systems only.

         Option A2 is the current mode of operation with or without
         the patch.  It has the current level of vulnerability and
         is NOT recommended. (It is the default setting with the patch).

   The remaining risks, if you do not follow this recommendation,
   are described in the following matrix:

                  Option E1         Option E2         Option E3
                | DISABLE         | RESTRICT        | ENABLE         |
                | pre/post-exec   | pre/post-exec to| pre/post-exec  |
                | (*)             | lbin directory  | completely     |
                |                 | (*)             | (*)            |
   | Option A1: | SECURE          | users on Cell   | users on Cell  |
   |            |                 | Manager system  | Manager system |
   | a. ENABLE  |                 | potentially can | potentially can|
   | OmniBack II|                 | execute         | execute        |
   | security   |                 | pre/post-exec   | pre/post-exec  |
   |            |                 | commands in     | any command    |
   | b. use     |                 | lbin directory  | as root on any |
   | inetd.sec  |                 | as root on any  | system in cell |
   | (*)        |                 | system in cell  |                |
   | Option A2: | SECURE          | users on ANY    | users on ANY   |
   |            |                 | system          | system         |
   | DISABLE    |                 | potentially can | potentially can|
   | OmniBack II|                 | execute         | execute        |
   | security   |                 | pre/post-exec   | pre/post-exec  |
   | (*)        |                 | commands in     | any command    |
   |            |                 | lbin directory  | as root on any |
   |            |                 | as root on any  | system in cell |
   |            |                 | system in cell  |                |
   (*) A more detailed description follows below.

   1. Details - Restrict execution of pre/post-exec commands

   Option E1 (DISABLE pre/post-exec) and
   Option E2 (RESTRICT pre/post-exec):

   In order to disable or restrict execution of pre/post exec scripts,
   add the variables OB2REXECOFF and/or OB2OEXECOFF into the omnirc.
   file on UNIX systems, or as REG_SZ type to the Windows NT/95

   The location of the omnirc. file is:
     - /opt/omni/.omnirc  HP-UX 10.X and 11.0
     - /usr/omni/.omnirc  other UNIX systems

   Permissions for the omnirc. file are 600 (read/write for owner)

   OB2REXECOFF=0  (not disabled, default)
              =1  (remote pre/post-exec disabled on the client)
   NOTE: REMOTE pre/post-exec executables must reside in LBIN (**)

   OB2OEXECOFF=0  (not disabled, default)
              =1  (OBJECT pre/post-exec disabled on the client)
              =2  (OBJECT pre/post-exec restricted to executables
                  in LBIN (**)

   (**) LBIN is:
     - /opt/omni/lbin on HP-UX 10.X and 11.0 systems
     - /usr/omni/lbin on other UNIX systems
     - OmniBack\bin on Windows systems

    On Windows the values are the same as on UNIX, but the Windows
    clients read OB2REXECOFF and OB2OEXECOFF from the registry.

    To set these variables, add them as values to the following key
    for OBII versions A.02.30 and A.02.55:

    or to the following key for version A.02.10:

   If the use of the pre/post exec scripts shall be restricted to the
   executables in LBIN (see ** above), the system administrator must
   set OB2OEXECOFF=2 and move ALL pre/post exec scripts to LBIN.
   This prevents an ordinary user from executing his own scripts.
   To configure pre/post scripts to run, ordinary users must now
   contact the system manager to move these scripts to LBIN AND chmod
   them to be only 555.  The scripts can be owned by the user, but the
   directory executable permissions automatically take precedence.

   NOTE: Under this mode, any remaining root owned pre/post scripts
         should be carefully scrutinized for operations that might be
         undesirable if executed unexpectedly by malicious users.

   NOTE: With the restriction to run pre/post-execs from LBIN only, it
         is still possible to execute commands that cannot be moved to
         LBIN by placing a wrapper script into LBIN that calls the


            cd /opt/myapp/bin      # change dir
            ./    # execute command
            return $?              # pass return value

   CAUTION: - The wrapper transfers the potential vulnerability to
     the user's script (/opt/myapp/bin/ in the
     example).  A malicious user would only need access to the
     user's account to modify the script called by the wrapper.

   2. Details - Restrict access to OB systems
   Option A1 (enable OB security):

     a. OB 2.55

   In addition restrict access to the OB systems in the cell.
   This limits the range of users that have the possibility to
   execute pre-/post-execs on the cell's systems.

   A quick way to do this is to enable the OmniBack II built-in
   security mechanism which restricts access to the client systems
   to the cell manager and other specified systems.  Other systems
   that are not configured in OmniBack II security will not be able
   to connect to the OmniBack II inet running on the system.
   It can be managed from the GUI or by modifying files (on UNIX)
   or registry entries (on Windows).

   Motif GUI procedure:
     - open "Install"
     - select "Edit"/"Add access limit to hosts in the cell..."

   Manual procedure:
     - create the file "allow_hosts" on all client systems in the
       cell. The location is:

        HP-UX 10.X and 11.0:   /etc/opt/omni/cell/allow_hosts
        other Unix:            /usr/omni/config/cell/allow_hosts
        Novell:                sys:\usr\omni\config\cell\allow_hosts

     Permissions for this file are 600 (read/write for owner)

   On Windows systems this content is not in a file but in the

   OB inet reads this file on startup.  If this file is present,
   no other system than the Cell Manager will be allowed to connect
   through OB inet.

   If you need to allow other systems to connect to OmniBack clients
   through inet, add them (line by line) to the allow_hosts file on
   the corresponding host.

   For example:
     * alternative cell manager for recovery of the primary cell manager
     * other hostnames associated with the cell manager system -
       multiple lan cards or host aliases
     * secondary system's hostname if the cell manager is in a
       ServiceGuard configuration.

   NOTE: This OB built in security does not apply to versions prior
         to OB 2.50.

     b. OB 2.1

   HP-UX has a built-in security mechanism that can be used
   to restrict access to certain services based on IP addresses.
   The OB 2.1 GUI can be used in order to enable this security on
   all HP-UX systems in the cell.

   If you want to enable inetd.sec security on selected systems
   only, please use the manual procedure:

   The inetd.sec file is located in /var/adm (HP-UX 10.x and 11.x)
   and in /usr/adm (HP-UX 9.x).

   In order to restrict access to the OmniBack service to all hosts
   with an IP address beginning with 15.136.120,
   add the following line to inetd.sec:

   omni allow 15.136.120.*

   (the is required to let the system access itself)

   After modifying inetd.sec, you need to restart inetd on the system.

   D. To subscribe to automatically receive future NEW HP Security
      Bulletins from the HP Electronic Support Center via electronic
      mail, do the following:

      Use your browser to get to the HP Electronic Support Center page
               (for US, Canada, Asia-Pacific, & Latin-America)     (for Europe)

    Login with your user ID and password (or register for one).
    Remember to save the User ID assigned to you, and your password.
    Once you are in the Main Menu:
    To -subscribe- to future HP Security Bulletins,
      click on "Support Information Digests".
    To -review- bulletins already released from the main Menu,
      click on the "Technical Knowledge Database (Security Bulletins
    Near the bottom of the next page, click on "Browse the HP Security
    Bulletin Archive".
    Once in the archive there is another link to our current Security
    Patch Matrix.  Updated daily, this matrix categorizes security
    patches by platform/OS release, and by bulletin topic.

    To find the latest patches for all security bulletins:

     [login in as ftp]
     cd export/patches
     get hp-ux_patch_matrix

     click on the links to export/, then patches/ and hp-ux_patch_matrix.

   E. To report new security vulnerabilities, send email to:


     Please encrypt any exploit information using the security-alert
     PGP key, available from your local key server, or by sending a
     message with a -subject- (not body) of 'get key' (no quotes) to

     Permission is granted for copying and circulating this Bulletin to
     Hewlett-Packard (HP) customers (or the Internet community) for the
     purpose of alerting them to problems, if and only if, the Bulletin
     is not edited or changed in any way, is attributed to HP, and
     provided such reproduction and/or distribution is performed for
     non-commercial purposes.

     Any other use of this information is prohibited. HP is not liable
     for any misuse of this information by any third party.

- -----End of Document ID:  RAF36213ECA-----------------------------------------

[  End Hewlett-Packard Advisory  ]

CIAC wishes to acknowledge the contributions of Hewlett-Packard for the
information contained in this bulletin.

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