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Red Hat Security Advisory: Insecure setserial initscript

Sep 27, 2001, 04:24 (0 Talkback[s])
Subject: [RHSA-2001:110-05] Insecure setserial initscript
From: bugzilla@redhat.com
Date: Wed, 26 Sep 2001 11:30 -0400

                   Red Hat, Inc. Red Hat Security Advisory

Synopsis:          Insecure setserial initscript
Advisory ID:       RHSA-2001:110-05
Issue date:        2001-09-12
Updated on:        2001-09-19
Product:           Red Hat Linux
Keywords:          setserial initscript temporary file
Cross references:  

1. Topic:

The initscript distributed with the setserial package (which is not
installed or enabled by default) uses predictable temporary file names, and
should not be used.  setserial-2.17-4 and earlier versions are affected.

If you have not recompiled your kernel, this issue does not affect you.  To 
check if you are affected by this issue, use the following command:

/bin/ls /etc/rc.d/init.d/serial

If this gives the output '/etc/rc.d/init.d/serial' then the initscript 
has been manually installed.  In this case use the following command:

/sbin/modprobe -l | grep '/serial\.o'

If this command gives output, you are affected by this issue.

2. Relevant releases/architectures:

3. Problem description:

The setserial package comes with an initscript in the documentation 
directory.  If this initscript is manually copied into the init.d 
directory structure and enabled, and the kernel is recompiled to have 
modular serial port support, then the initscript will use a predictable 
temporary file name.

There are a number of other bugs that also prevent the initscript from
working correctly in this situation (detailed in bugzilla bug #52862).

4. Solution:

Do not use the initscript supplied with setserial.  To disable it, use 
the following command:

/sbin/chkconfig serial off

Alternatively, if your system needs manual adjustment of its serial
port settings and you wish to have those adjustments re-applied
automatically on boot, be sure to use a kernel that has non-modular
serial port support, such as those supplied by Red Hat, Inc.

5. Bug IDs fixed (http://bugzilla.redhat.com/bugzilla for more info):

6. RPMs required:

7. Verification:

MD5 sum                           Package Name

These packages are GPG signed by Red Hat, Inc. for security.  Our key
is available at:

You can verify each package with the following command:
    rpm --checksig  filename

If you only wish to verify that each package has not been corrupted or
tampered with, examine only the md5sum with the following command:
    rpm --checksig --nogpg filename

8. References:

Bugzilla bug #52862, at:


Copyright(c) 2000, 2001 Red Hat, Inc.