Microsoft Scrambles to Patch SQL Server Holes

 
 
By Dennis Fisher  |  Posted 2002-07-29 Print this article Print
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

Microsoft Corp. last week unleashed a flurry of security bulletins warning of problems in several of its products, including SQL Server 2000, Exchange 5.5 and Metadirectory Services 2.2.

Microsoft Corp. last week unleashed a flurry of security bulletins warning of problems in several of its products, including SQL Server 2000, Exchange 5.5 and Metadirectory Services 2.2.

The most serious of the vulnerabilities are two buffer overruns in SQL Server 2000. Both of these problems enable an attacker to completely compromise a target server and its data without authenticating to the server.

The application has functionality that allows multiple instances of SQL Server 2000 to run on a single machine at a given time. The default TCP listening port for the program is 1433, which can be used by only one instance. Other instances will listen on whatever port is assigned to them by the Resolution Service.

By sending a carefully crafted packet to the Resolution Service on User Datagram Protocol Port 1434, an attacker could overwrite a portion of the heap or the stack memory, depending on the contents of the packet. The attacker could then gain control of the server, according to Microsofts bulletin.

There is also a buffer overrun vulnerability in several of the Database Consistency Checkers that ship with SQL Server 2000. An exploitation of the buffer overrun in these utilities gives an attacker the ability to run arbitrary code on the server.

Additionally, Microsoft, which is based in Redmond, Wash., disclosed a SQL injection vulnerability in two stored procedures in SQL Server 2000 that, under a narrow set of circumstances, could allow an attacker to run operating system commands on the server.

On top of the SQL problems, Microsoft issued an advisory and patch for a buffer overrun in the IMC (Internet Mail Connector) in Exchange 5.5. The flaw lies in the way the server responds to "extended Hello" SMTP messages from other servers. Under certain conditions, an attacker could overflow a buffer in the IMC, giving him the ability to execute code on the server. But, because the attacker cannot simply send his own data to the server and overflow the vulnerable buffer, the attack requires quite a bit of work to execute, Microsoft said.

There is also a flaw in MMS (Microsoft Metadirectory Services) that allows an unprivileged user to connect to the MMS data repository through an LDAP client, which would bypass some security checks. The user could then manipulate data within the repository.

In addition, Microsoft issued a revised cumulative patch for its Windows Media Player 6.4, 7.1 and XP. The original patch, released in June, was missing a file containing the fixes for all the previous flaws in the software; it only contained the patch for three flaws discovered in June.

Patches for all the recently discovered vulnerabilities are available via www.eweek.com/links.

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

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