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VB-95:01 - HP Security Vulnerability in Remote Watch

  • From: CERT Bulletin
  • Date: Thu Mar 02 16:03:57 1995

CERT Vendor-Initiated Bulletin VB-95:01
March 2, 1995

Topic: Security Vulnerability in Remote Watch 
Source: Hewlett-Packard Company

To aid in the wide distribution of essential security information, the CERT
Coordination Center is forwarding the following information from
Hewlett-Packard.  Hewlett-Packard urges you to act on this information as soon
as possible. Their contact information is included in the forwarded text
below; please contact them if you have any questions or need further

========================FORWARDED TEXT STARTS HERE============================

      HEWLETT-PACKARD SECURITY BULLETIN: #00020, 31 January 95

Hewlett-Packard recommends that 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:  Security vulnerability in Remote Watch in fileset WATCH-RUN for
          releases of HP-UX.
PLATFORM: HP 9000 series 300/400s & 700/800s running HP-UX revisions 8.X, 9.X.
DAMAGE:   A vulnerability in Remote Watch exists allowing users to potentially
          gain increased privileges.
SOLUTION: Apply patch PHSS_5136 (series 800    , HP-UX 9.X), or
                      PHSS_5185 (series 800    , HP-UX 8.X), or
                      PHSS_5107 (series 700    , HP-UX 9.X), or
                      PHSS_5180 (series 700    , HP-UX 8.X), or
                      PHSS_5120 (series 300/400, HP-UX 9.X), or
                      PHSS_5168 (series 300/400, HP-UX 8.X).
AVAILABILITY: All patches are available now.

I. Update

   A. It has been found that HP-UX systems with Remote Watch installed
   have this vulnerability.  The vulnerability allows users to potentially
   gain increased privileges.
   If these patches are installed, then the vulnerability cannot be exploited.

   B. Fixing the problem

   The vulnerability can be eliminated from releases 8.X and 9.X of HP-UX
   by applying a patch.

   Hewlett-Packard recommends that all customers concerned with the
   security of their HP-UX systems apply the appropriate patch as soon as

   C. How to Install the Patch (for HP-UX 8.X and 9.X)

   1.  Determine which patch is appropriate for your hardware platform
       and operating system:

                      PHSS_5136 (series 800    , HP-UX 9.X),
                      PHSS_5185 (series 800    , HP-UX 8.X),
                      PHSS_5107 (series 700    , HP-UX 9.X),
                      PHSS_5180 (series 700    , HP-UX 8.X),
                      PHSS_5120 (series 300/400, HP-UX 9.X),
                      PHSS_5168 (series 300/400, HP-UX 8.X),

   2.  Hewlett Packard's HP-UX patches are available via email
       and WWW (MOSAIC)

        To obtain a copy of the HP SupportLine email service user's guide,
        send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE to (no Subject is required):

                      send guide

        The users guide explains the process for downloading HP-UX patches
        via email and other services available.

        WWW (MOSAIC) service (downloading of patches) is
        also available via WWW (MOSAIC) our URL is:

   3.  Apply the patch to your HP-UX system.

   4.  Examine /tmp/update.log for any relevant WARNINGs or ERRORs.  This
       can be done as follows:

       a.  At the shell prompt, type "tail -60 /tmp/update.log | more"
       b.  Page through the next three screens via the space bar, looking
           for WARNING or ERROR messages.

   D. Impact of the patch and workaround

       No patches will be available for versions of HP-UX prior to 8.0.

   E. To subscribe to automatically receive future NEW HP Security
        Bulletins from the HP SupportLine mail service via electronic
        mail, send an email message to:

          (no Subject is required)

        Multiple instructions are allowed in the TEXT PORTION OF THE
        MESSAGE, here are some basic instructions you may want to use:

        To add your name to the subscription list for new security
        bulletins, send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE:

                  subscribe security_info

        To retrieve the index of all HP Security Bulletins issued to date,
        send the following in the TEXT PORTION OF THE MESSAGE:

                  send security_info_list

        WWW (MOSAIC) service (Browsing of Bulletins) is also available
        via WWW (MOSAIC) our URL is: (

        Choose "Support News", then under Support News,
        choose "Security Bulletins"

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

=========================FORWARDED TEXT ENDS HERE=============================

CERT bulletins, CERT advisories, information about FIRST representatives, and
other information related to computer security are available for anonymous FTP

CERT advisories and bulletins are also posted on the USENET newsgroup If you would like to have future advisories and
bulletins mailed to you or to a mail exploder at your site, please send mail

If you wish to send sensitive incident or vulnerability information to
CERT staff by electronic mail, we strongly advise that the e-mail be
encrypted.  The CERT Coordination Center can support a shared DES key, PGP
(public key available via anonymous FTP on, or PEM (contact
CERT staff for details).

Internet E-mail:
Telephone: +1 412-268-7090 (24-hour hotline)
           CERT personnel answer 8:30 a.m.-5:00 p.m. EST(GMT-5)/EDT(GMT-4),
           and are on call for emergencies during other hours.
Fax: +1 412-268-6989

CERT Coordination Center
Software Engineering Institute
Carnegie Mellon University
Pittsburgh, PA 15213-3890

CERT is a service mark of Carnegie Mellon University.

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