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FreeBSD Security Advisory FreeBSD-SA-13:05.nfsserver [REVISED]
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FreeBSD-SA-13:05.nfsserver Security Advisory
The FreeBSD Project
Topic: Insufficient input validation in the NFS server
Credits: Adam Nowacki
Affects: All supported versions of FreeBSD.
Corrected: 2013-04-29 21:10:49 UTC (stable/8, 8.4-PRERELEASE)
2013-04-29 21:10:53 UTC (releng/8.3, 8.3-RELEASE-p8)
2013-04-29 21:11:31 UTC (releng/8.4, 8.4-RC1-p1)
2013-04-29 21:11:31 UTC (releng/8.4, 8.4-RC2-p1)
2013-04-29 21:11:01 UTC (stable/9, 9.1-STABLE)
2013-04-29 21:11:05 UTC (releng/9.1, 9.1-RELEASE-p3)
CVE Name: CVE-2013-3266
For general information regarding FreeBSD Security Advisories,
including descriptions of the fields above, security branches, and the
following sections, please visit <URL:http://security.FreeBSD.org/>.
0. Revision History
v1.0 2013-04-29 Initial release.
v1.1 2013-04-29 Corrected patch URL.
Additional workaround information.
The Network File System (NFS) allows a host to export some or all of its
file systems so that other hosts can access them over the network and mount
them as if they were on local disks. FreeBSD includes server and client
implementations of NFS.
FreeBSD 8.0 and onward has two NFS implementations: the original CSRG
NFSv2 and NFSv3 implementation and a new implementation which also
FreeBSD 9.0 and onward uses the new NFS implementation by default.
II. Problem Description
When processing READDIR requests, the NFS server does not check that
it is in fact operating on a directory node. An attacker can use a
specially modified NFS client to submit a READDIR request on a file,
causing the underlying filesystem to interpret that file as a
The exact consequences of an attack depend on the amount of input
validation in the underlying filesystem:
- If the file resides on a UFS filesystem on a little-endian server,
an attacker can cause random heap corruption with completely
- If the file resides on a ZFS filesystem, an attacker can write
arbitrary data on the stack. It is believed, but has not been
confirmed, that this can be exploited to run arbitrary code in
Other filesystems may also be vulnerable.
Systems that do not provide NFS service are not vulnerable. Neither
are systems that do but use the old NFS implementation, which is the
default in FreeBSD 8.x.
To determine which implementation an NFS server is running, run the
# kldstat -v | grep -cw nfsd
This will print 1 if the system is running the new NFS implementation,
and 0 otherwise.
To switch to the old NFS implementation:
1) Append the following lines to /etc/rc.conf:
2) If the NFS server is compiled into the kernel (which is the case
for the stock GENERIC kernel), replace the NFSD option with the
NFSSERVER option, then recompile your kernel as described in
If the NFS server is not compiled into the kernel, the correct
module will be loaded at boot time.
3) Finally, reboot the system.
Perform one of the following:
1) Upgrade your vulnerable system to a supported FreeBSD stable or
release / security branch (releng) dated after the correction date.
2) To update your vulnerable system via a source code patch:
The following patches have been verified to apply to the applicable
FreeBSD release branches.
a) Download the relevant patch from the location below, and verify the
detached PGP signature using your PGP utility.
# fetch http://security.FreeBSD.org/patches/SA-13:05/nfsserver.patch
# fetch http://security.FreeBSD.org/patches/SA-13:05/nfsserver.patch.asc
# gpg --verify nfsserver.patch.asc
b) Apply the patch.
# cd /usr/src
# patch < /path/to/patch
c) Recompile your kernel as described in
<URL:http://www.FreeBSD.org/handbook/kernelconfig.html> and reboot the
3) To update your vulnerable system via a binary patch:
Systems running a RELEASE version of FreeBSD on the i386 or amd64
platforms can be updated via the freebsd-update(8) utility:
# freebsd-update fetch
# freebsd-update install
VI. Correction details
The following list contains the revision numbers of each file that was
corrected in FreeBSD.
The latest revision of this advisory is available at
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