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[security-alerts] FW: [VulnWatch] EEYE: Windows VDM Zero Page Race Condition Privilege Escalation

> -----Original Message-----
> From: eEye Advisories [mailto:Advisories@xxxxxxxx] 
> Sent: Tuesday, April 10, 2007 9:58 PM
> To: vulnwatch@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [VulnWatch] EEYE: Windows VDM Zero Page Race 
> Condition Privilege Escalation
> Windows VDM Zero Page Race Condition Privilege Escalation
> Release Date:
> April 10, 2007
> Date Reported:
> December 12, 2006
> Severity:
> Medium (Local Privilege Escalation to Kernel)
> Systems Affected:
> Windows NT 4.0 SP6
> Windows 2000 SP4
> Windows XP SP2 (x86)
> Windows Server 2003 SP2 (x86)
> Overview:
> eEye Digital Security has discovered a local privilege escalation
> vulnerability in the Windows kernel that allows an unprivileged user
> with the ability to execute a program to fully compromise an affected
> system.  All x86 versions of Windows up to and including 
> Windows Server
> 2003 SP2 are vulnerable.
> The Windows kernel's Virtual DOS Machine (VDM) implementation 
> features a
> race condition through which a malicious program can modify the first
> 4KB page of physical memory (also known as the "zero page").  The data
> in this region of memory is trusted and may be subsequently used by
> other Virtual DOS Machines, including a VDM instantiated by 
> the Windows
> kernel as part of hibernating or effecting a blue-screen crash.
> Exploitation of this vulnerability therefore allows arbitrary code to
> run within other users' VDM processes, and even within the kernel if
> hibernation or a blue-screen can be provoked by any available means.
> This vulnerability was silently fixed within Windows Vista in 
> June 2006
> or earlier.
> Technical Details:
> As part of VDM initialization, NT!VdmpInitialize (invoked by calling
> NtVdmControl(3)) copies the contents of the zero page to 
> virtual address
> 0, so that the VDM can have a duplicate of the system's original
> Interrupt Vector Table (IVT) and BIOS data area.  To accomplish this,
> VdmpInitialize opens "\Device\PhysicalMemory" with SECTION_ALL_ACCESS,
> then maps a view of the first 4KB of the section.  What 
> happens next is
> a memmove from this view to virtual address 0, wrapped in an exception
> handler which will unmap the view and abort the function in 
> the event of
> an exception; the view is also immediately unmapped if the memmove
> completes successfully.
> Regrettably, the physical memory view is mapped with PAGE_READWRITE
> memory permissions into the user-mode portion of the address 
> space, so a
> malicious thread may be able to regain execution before the view is
> unmapped, and then directly modify the zero page by writing into the
> view.  Although the window of opportunity presented by the race
> condition is brief, the base address of the mapping is dynamic, and
> VdmpInitialize can only successfully execute once per process, it is
> nevertheless possible to quickly and reliably exploit this
> vulnerability.  Working out the details, however, is left as 
> an exercise
> for the reader.
> Just kidding.
> By creating a number of high-priority, CPU-bound threads within the
> NTVDM process, the chances of preempting the VdmpInitialize 
> thread while
> the view is available (for instance, when virtual page 0 is first
> touched, or during the call to ZwUnmapViewOfSection) increase greatly.
> As for the address of the view, it can be corralled to the point of
> predictability by filling the virtual address space of the 
> process, with
> the exclusion of one hole which the CPU-bound "writer" threads will
> repeatedly target.  And while it is true that VdmpInitialize can only
> succeed once per process, it can fail endlessly, each time mapping and
> attempting to duplicate the zero page.  If there is no writable memory
> at virtual address 0 when VdmpInitialize calls memmove, an access
> violation occurs and the function fails.  (Note that this 
> trick does not
> apply to NT 4.0, as the exception is unhandled and will result in a
> blue-screen.)
> Code executing in Virtual-8086 mode within a VDM may call software
> interrupts from the IVT at will; the most interesting example 
> is within
> the VDM established by HAL.DLL!HalpBiosDisplayReset.  Here, 
> HalpBiosCall
> is invoked to transfer execution to HalpRealModeStart, which is simply
> the instructions "MOV EAX, 12h / INT 10h" followed by a VDM 
> "BOP."  The
> physical page of HAL.DLL containing this code is mapped at virtual
> address 20000h with write permissions, and therefore the INT 
> 10h handler
> may patch code within HAL.DLL (for instance, HalpRealModeEnd) in order
> to transcend V86 mode and infiltrate the kernel directly.  (It is also
> worth noting that the V86-mode code necessarily executes with
> EFlags.IOPL set to 3.)
> Although the kernel is currently only known to use BIOS interrupts in
> the event of hibernation or a blue-screen (via InbvResetDisplay), this
> vulnerability does thereby enable what would otherwise be a local
> denial-of-service to become a local elevation of privileges.
> On Windows NT 4.0, which does not support the OBJ_KERNEL_HANDLE
> ObjectAttributes flag, a second race condition exists wherein the
> temporary "\Device\PhysicalMemory" section handle opened during
> VdmpInitialize may be abused by an unprivileged program, 
> allowing write
> access to the entirety of physical memory.
> Protection:
> Retina - Network Security Scanner has been updated to identify this
> vulnerability.
> Vendor Status:
> Microsoft has released a patch for this vulnerability. The patch is
> available at:
> http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/bulletin/MS07-022.mspx
> Credit:
> Derek Soeder
> Related Links:
> eEye Research - http://research.eeye.com
> Retina - Network Security Scanner - Free Trial:
> http://www.eeye.com/html/products/retina/download/index.html
> Blink - Unified Client Security Personal - Free For Personal 
> Use For One
> Year:
> http://www.eeye.com/html/products/blink/personal/download/index.html
> Blink - Unified Client Security Professional - Free Trial:
> http://www.eeye.com/html/products/blink/download/index.html
> Blink - Unified Client Security Neighborhood Watch - Free For Personal
> Use:
> http://www.eeye.com/html/products/blink/neighborhoodwatch/index.html
> Greetings:
> Jim H.  RB, SB, MB, SJ, Doc.  GLin, CSam, and Tamara
> Copyright (c) 1998-2007 eEye Digital Security Permission is hereby
> granted for the redistribution of this alert electronically.  
> It is not
> to be edited in any way without express consent of eEye.  If 
> you wish to
> reprint the whole or any part of this alert in any other medium
> excluding electronic medium, please email alert@xxxxxxxx for 
> permission.
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