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Microsoft Security Bulletin MS09-064 - Critical

Vulnerability in License Logging Server Could Allow Remote Code Execution (974783)

Published: November 10, 2009

Version: 1.0

General Information

Executive Summary

This security update resolves a privately reported vulnerability in Microsoft Windows 2000. The vulnerability could allow remote code execution if an attacker sent a specially crafted network message to a computer running the License Logging Server. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of the system. Firewall best practices and standard default firewall configurations can help protect networks from attacks that originate outside the enterprise perimeter.

This security update is rated Critical for Microsoft Windows 2000. For more information, see the subsection, Affected and Non-Affected Software, in this section.

The security update addresses the vulnerability by changing the way the License Logging service validates a specific field inside the RPC packet. For more information about the vulnerability, see the Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) subsection for the specific vulnerability entry under the next section, Vulnerability Information.

Recommendation. The majority of customers have automatic updating enabled and will not need to take any action because this security update will be downloaded and installed automatically. Customers who have not enabled automatic updating need to check for updates and install this update manually. For information about specific configuration options in automatic updating, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 294871.

For administrators and enterprise installations, or end users who want to install this security update manually, Microsoft recommends that customers apply the update immediately using update management software, or by checking for updates using the Microsoft Update service.

See also the section, Detection and Deployment Tools and Guidance, later in this bulletin.

Known Issues. None

Affected and Non-Affected Software

The following software have been tested to determine which versions or editions are affected. Other versions or editions are either past their support life cycle or are not affected. To determine the support life cycle for your software version or edition, visit Microsoft Support Lifecycle.

Affected Software

Operating SystemMaximum Security ImpactAggregate Severity RatingBulletins Replaced by this Update
Microsoft Windows 2000 Server Service Pack 4 Remote Code ExecutionCriticalNone

Non-Affected Software

Operating System
Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional Service Pack 4
Windows XP Service Pack 2 and Windows XP Service Pack 3
Windows XP Professional x64 Edition Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2003 Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2003 x64 Edition Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2003 with SP2 for Itanium-based Systems
Windows Vista, Windows Vista Service Pack 1, and Windows Vista Service Pack 2
Windows Vista x64 Edition, Windows Vista x64 Edition Service Pack 1, Windows Vista x64 Edition Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2008 for 32-bit Systems and Windows Server 2008 for 32-bit Systems Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2008 for x64-based Systems and Windows Server 2008 for x64-based Systems Service Pack 2
Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems and Windows Server 2008 for Itanium-based Systems Service Pack 2
Windows 7 for 32-bit Systems
Windows 7 for x64-based Systems
Windows Server 2008 R2 for x64-based Systems
Windows Server 2008 R2 for Itanium-based Systems

What is the License Logging service? 
The License Logging service is a tool that was originally designed to help customers manage licenses for the Microsoft server products that are licensed in the Server Client Access License (CAL) model.

Is the License Logging Server installed by default on Microsoft Windows 2000 Server? 
Yes, by default, Microsoft Windows 2000 Server is installed with the License Logging service, and it is enabled by default.

How do I know if I use the License Logging service on my server? 
The License Logging service is not available on Microsoft Windows 2000 Professional. By default, the License Logging service is installed and running on Microsoft Windows 2000 Server. You can determine whether the License Logging service is installed by performing the following procedure.

  1. Click Start, click Programs, click Administrative Tools, and then click Services.
  2. Verify that the License Logging service is present.

Where are the file information details? 
Refer to the reference tables in the Security Update Deployment section for the location of the file information details.

I am using an older release of the software discussed in this security bulletin. What should I do? 
The affected software listed in this bulletin have been tested to determine which releases are affected. Other releases are past their support life cycle. For more information about the product lifecycle, visit the Microsoft Support Lifecycle Web site.

It should be a priority for customers who have older releases of the software to migrate to supported releases to prevent potential exposure to vulnerabilities. To determine the support lifecycle for your software release, see Select a Product for Lifecycle Information. For more information about service packs for these software releases, see Lifecycle Supported Service Packs.

Customers who require custom support for older software must contact their Microsoft account team representative, their Technical Account Manager, or the appropriate Microsoft partner representative for custom support options. Customers without an Alliance, Premier, or Authorized Contract can contact their local Microsoft sales office. For contact information, visit the Microsoft Worldwide Information Web site, select the country in the Contact Information list, and then click Go to see a list of telephone numbers. When you call, ask to speak with the local Premier Support sales manager. For more information, see the Microsoft Support Lifecycle Policy FAQ.

Vulnerability Information

The following severity ratings assume the potential maximum impact of the vulnerability. For information regarding the likelihood, within 30 days of this security bulletin's release, of the exploitability of the vulnerability in relation to its severity rating and security impact, please see the Exploitability Index in the November bulletin summary. For more information, see Microsoft Exploitability Index.

Vulnerability Severity Rating and Maximum Security Impact by Affected Software
Affected SoftwareLicense Logging Server Heap Overflow Vulnerability - CVE-2009-2523 Aggregate Severity Rating
Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4 Critical 
Remote Code Execution
Critical

An unauthenticated remote code execution vulnerability exists in the way that the Microsoft License Logging Server software handles specially crafted RPC packets. An attempt to exploit the vulnerability would not require authentication, allowing an attacker to exploit the vulnerability by sending a specially crafted network message to a computer running the License Logging service. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of the system.

To view this vulnerability as a standard entry in the Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures list, see CVE-2009-2523.

Mitigating Factors for License Logging Server Heap Overflow Vulnerability - CVE-2009-2523

Mitigation refers to a setting, common configuration, or general best-practice, existing in a default state, that could reduce the severity of exploitation of a vulnerability. The following mitigating factors may be helpful in your situation:

  • Firewall best practices and standard default firewall configurations can help protect networks from attacks that originate outside the enterprise perimeter. Best practices recommend that systems that are connected to the Internet have a minimal number of ports exposed.

Workarounds for License Logging Server Heap Overflow Vulnerability - CVE-2009-2523

Workaround refers to a setting or configuration change that does not correct the underlying vulnerability but would help block known attack vectors before you apply the update. Microsoft has tested the following workarounds and states in the discussion whether a workaround reduces functionality:

  • Disable the License Logging service

    Disabling the License Logging service will help protect your system from remote attempts to exploit this vulnerability.

    To do this, perform the following steps:

    1. Click Start, and then click Control Panel.
    2. Double-click Administrative Tools.
    3. Double-click Services.
    4. Double-click License Logging Service.
    5. In the Startup type list, click Disabled.
    6. Click Stop, and then click OK.

    Impact of workaround. If the License Logging service is disabled, any services that explicitly depend on the License Logging service may log an error message in the system event log. For more information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 316631

  • Block TCP ports 139 and 445 at the firewall

    These ports are used to initiate a connection with the affected component. Blocking TCP ports 139 and 445 at the firewall will help protect systems that are behind that firewall from attempts to exploit this vulnerability. Microsoft recommends that you block all unsolicited inbound communication from the Internet to help prevent attacks that may use other ports. For more information about ports, see the TechNet article, TCP and UDP Port Assignments.

    Impact of workaround. Several Windows services use the affected ports. Blocking connectivity to the ports may cause various applications or services to not function. Some of the applications or services that could be impacted are listed below:

    • Applications that use SMB (CIFS)
    • Applications that use mailslots or named pipes (RPC over SMB)
    • Server (File and Print Sharing)
    • Group Policy
    • Net Logon
    • Distributed File System (DFS)
    • Terminal Server Licensing
    • Print Spooler
    • Computer Browser
    • Remote Procedure Call Locator
    • Fax Service
    • Indexing Service
    • Performance Logs and Alerts
    • Systems Management Server
    • License Logging Service

FAQ for License Logging Server Heap Overflow Vulnerability - CVE-2009-2523

What is the scope of the vulnerability? 
This is a remote code execution vulnerability. An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system. An attacker could then install programs; view, change, or delete data; or create new accounts with full user rights.

What causes the vulnerability? 
The License Logging service fails to validate the length of a string passed to it through an RPC call. This results in a buffer overflow on the heap.

What might an attacker use the vulnerability to do? 
An attacker who successfully exploited this vulnerability could take complete control of an affected system.

How could an attacker exploit the vulnerability? 
An attacker could try to exploit the vulnerability by creating a specially crafted RPC message and sending the message to an affected system.

What systems are primarily at risk from the vulnerability? 
Microsoft Windows 2000 servers running the License Logging service are affected by this vulnerability. As such, domain controllers are at a greater risk for this vulnerability than workstations or other servers.

What does the update do? 
The security update addresses the vulnerabilities by correcting the validation of RPC messages to the License Logging service.

What is RPC?
Remote Procedure Call (RPC) is a protocol that a program can use to request a service from a program located on another computer in a network. RPC helps with interoperability because the program using RPC does not have to understand the network protocols that are supporting communication. In RPC, the requesting program is the client and the service-providing program is the server.

When this security bulletin was issued, had this vulnerability been publicly disclosed? 
No. Microsoft received information about this vulnerability through responsible disclosure.

When this security bulletin was issued, had Microsoft received any reports that this vulnerability was being exploited? 
No. Microsoft had not received any information to indicate that this vulnerability had been publicly used to attack customers when this security bulletin was originally issued.

Update Information

Manage the software and security updates you need to deploy to the servers, desktop, and mobile systems in your organization. For more information see the TechNet Update Management Center. The Microsoft TechNet Security Web site provides additional information about security in Microsoft products.

Security updates are available from Microsoft Update and Windows Update. Security updates are also available from the Microsoft Download Center. You can find them most easily by doing a keyword search for "security update."

Finally, security updates can be downloaded from the Microsoft Update Catalog. The Microsoft Update Catalog provides a searchable catalog of content made available through Windows Update and Microsoft Update, including security updates, drivers and service packs. By searching using the security bulletin number (such as, "MS07-036"), you can add all of the applicable updates to your basket (including different languages for an update), and download to the folder of your choosing. For more information about the Microsoft Update Catalog, see the Microsoft Update Catalog FAQ.

Note Microsoft discontinued support for Office Update and the Office Update Inventory Tool as of August 1, 2009. To continue getting the latest updates for Microsoft Office products, use Microsoft Update. For more information, see About Microsoft Office Update: Frequently Asked Questions.

Detection and Deployment Guidance

Microsoft provides detection and deployment guidance for security updates. This guidance contains recommendations and information that can help IT professionals understand how to use various tools for detection and deployment of security updates. For more information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 961747.

Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer

Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) allows administrators to scan local and remote systems for missing security updates as well as common security misconfigurations. For more information about MBSA, visit Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer.

The following table provides the MBSA detection summary for this security update.

Software MBSA 2.1.1
Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4Yes

The latest version of MBSA has been released: Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer 2.1.1. For more information, see Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer 2.1.

Windows Server Update Services

By using Windows Server Update Services (WSUS), administrators can deploy the latest critical updates and security updates for Microsoft Windows 2000 operating systems and later, Office XP and later, Exchange Server 2003, and SQL Server 2000. For more information about how to deploy this security update using Windows Server Update Services, visit the Windows Server Update Services Web site.

Systems Management Server

The following table provides the SMS detection and deployment summary for this security update.

SoftwareSMS 2.0SMS 2003 with SUITSMS 2003 with ITMUConfiguration Manager 2007
Microsoft Windows 2000 Service Pack 4YesYesYesYes

For SMS 2.0 and SMS 2003, the Security Update Inventory Tool (SUIT) can be used by SMS to detect security updates. See also Downloads for Systems Management Server 2.0.

For SMS 2003, the SMS 2003 Inventory Tool for Microsoft Updates (ITMU) can be used by SMS to detect security updates that are offered by Microsoft Update and that are supported by Windows Server Update Services. For more information about the SMS 2003 ITMU, see SMS 2003 Inventory Tool for Microsoft Updates. For more information about SMS scanning tools, see SMS 2003 Software Update Scanning Tools. See also Downloads for Systems Management Server 2003.

System Center Configuration Manager 2007 uses WSUS 3.0 for detection of updates. For more information about Configuration Manager 2007 Software Update Management, visit System Center Configuration Manager 2007.

For more information about SMS, visit the SMS Web site.

For more detailed information, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 910723: Summary list of monthly detection and deployment guidance articles.

Update Compatibility Evaluator and Application Compatibility Toolkit

Updates often write to the same files and registry settings required for your applications to run. This can trigger incompatibilities and increase the time it takes to deploy security updates. You can streamline testing and validating Windows updates against installed applications with the Update Compatibility Evaluator components included with Application Compatibility Toolkit.

The Application Compatibility Toolkit (ACT) contains the necessary tools and documentation to evaluate and mitigate application compatibility issues before deploying Microsoft Windows Vista, a Windows Update, a Microsoft Security Update, or a new version of Windows Internet Explorer in your environment.

Affected Software

For information about the specific security update for your affected software, click the appropriate link:

Windows 2000 (all editions)

Reference Table

The following table contains the security update information for this software. You can find additional information in the subsection, Deployment Information, in this section.

Inclusion in Future Service Packs The update for this issue may be included in a future update rollup
Deployment
Installing without user interventionWindows2000-KB974783-x86-enu /quiet
Installing without restartingWindows2000-KB974783-x86-enu /norestart
Update log fileKB974783.log
Further informationSee the subsection, Detection and Deployment Tools and Guidance
Restart Requirement
Restart required?Yes, you must restart your system after you apply this security update.
HotPatchingNot applicable
Removal Information Use Add or Remove Programs tool in Control Panel or the Spuninst.exe utility located in the %Windir%\$NTUninstallKB974783$\Spuninst folder
File Information See Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 974783
Registry Key Verification HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Updates\Windows 2000\SP5\KB974783

Deployment Information

Installing the Update

When you install this security update, the installer checks whether one or more of the files that are being updated on your system have previously been updated by a Microsoft hotfix.

If you have previously installed a hotfix to update one of these files, the installer copies the RTMQFE, SP1QFE, or SP2QFE files to your system. Otherwise, the installer copies the RTMGDR, SP1GDR, or SP2GDR files to your system. Security updates may not contain all variations of these files. For more information about this behavior, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 824994.

For more information about the installer, visit the Microsoft TechNet Web site.

For more information about the terminology that appears in this bulletin, such as hotfix, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 824684.

This security update supports the following setup switches.

Supported Security Update Installation Switches
SwitchDescription
/help Displays the command-line options.
Setup Modes
/passive Unattended Setup mode. No user interaction is required, but installation status is displayed. If a restart is required at the end of Setup, a dialog box will be presented to the user with a timer warning that the computer will restart in 30 seconds.
/quiet Quiet mode. This is the same as unattended mode, but no status or error messages are displayed.
Restart Options
/norestart Does not restart when installation has completed.
/forcerestart Restarts the computer after installation and force other applications to close at shutdown without saving open files first.
/warnrestart[:x] Presents a dialog box with a timer warning the user that the computer will restart in x seconds. (The default setting is 30 seconds.) Intended for use with the /quiet switch or the /passive switch.
/promptrestart Displays a dialog box prompting the local user to allow a restart.
Special Options
/overwriteoem Overwrites OEM files without prompting.
/nobackup Does not back up files needed for uninstall.
/forceappsclose Forces other programs to close when the computer shuts down.
/log:path Allows the redirection of installation log files.
/extract[:path] Extracts files without starting the Setup program.
/ER Enables extended error reporting.
/verbose Enables verbose logging. During installation, creates %Windir%\CabBuild.log. This log details the files that are copied. Using this switch may cause the installation to proceed more slowly.

Note You can combine these switches into one command. For backward compatibility, the security update also supports the setup switches that the earlier version of the Setup program uses. For more information about the supported installation switches, see Microsoft Knowledge Base Article 262841.

Removing the Update

This security update supports the following setup switches.

Supported Spuninst.exe Switches
SwitchDescription
/help Displays the command-line options.
Setup Modes
/passive Unattended Setup mode. No user interaction is required, but installation status is displayed. If a restart is required at the end of Setup, a dialog box will be presented to the user with a timer warning that the computer will restart in 30 seconds.
/quiet Quiet mode. This is the same as unattended mode, but no status or error messages are displayed.
Restart Options
/norestart Does not restart when installation has completed.
/forcerestart Restarts the computer after installation and force other applications to close at shutdown without saving open files first.
/warnrestart[:x] Presents a dialog box with a timer warning the user that the computer will restart in x seconds. (The default setting is 30 seconds.) Intended for use with the /quiet switch or the /passive switch.
/promptrestart Displays a dialog box prompting the local user to allow a restart.
Special Options
/forceappsclose Forces other programs to close when the computer shuts down.
/log:path Allows the redirection of installation log files.

Verifying That the Update Has Been Applied

  • Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer

    To verify that a security update has been applied to an affected system, you may be able to use the Microsoft Baseline Security Analyzer (MBSA) tool. See the section, Detection and Deployment Tools and Guidance, earlier in this bulletin for more information.

  • File Version Verification

    Because there are several editions of Microsoft Windows, the following steps may be different on your system. If they are, see your product documentation to complete these steps.

    1. Click Start, and then click Search.
    2. In the Search Results pane, click All files and folders under Search Companion.
    3. In the All or part of the file name box, type a file name from the appropriate file information table, and then click Search.
    4. In the list of files, right-click a file name from the appropriate file information table, and then click Properties.

      Note Depending on the edition of the operating system, or the programs that are installed on your system, some of the files that are listed in the file information table may not be installed.
    5. On the Version tab, determine the version of the file that is installed on your system by comparing it to the version that is documented in the appropriate file information table.

      Note Attributes other than the file version may change during installation. Comparing other file attributes to the information in the file information table is not a supported method of verifying that the update has been applied. Also, in certain cases, files may be renamed during installation. If the file or version information is not present, use one of the other available methods to verify update installation.
  • Registry Key Verification

    You may also be able to verify the files that this security update has installed by reviewing the registry keys listed in the Reference Table in this section.

    These registry keys may not contain a complete list of installed files. Also, these registry keys may not be created correctly when an administrator or an OEM integrates or slipstreams this security update into the Windows installation source files.

Other Information

Acknowledgments

Microsoft thanks the following for working with us to help protect customers:

  • Cody Pierce of TippingPoint DVLabs for reporting the License Logging Server Heap Overflow Vulnerability (CVE-2009-2523)

Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP)

To improve security protections for customers, Microsoft provides vulnerability information to major security software providers in advance of each monthly security update release. Security software providers can then use this vulnerability information to provide updated protections to customers via their security software or devices, such as antivirus, network-based intrusion detection systems, or host-based intrusion prevention systems. To determine whether active protections are available from security software providers, please visit the active protections Web sites provided by program partners, listed in Microsoft Active Protections Program (MAPP) Partners.

Support

  • Customers in the U.S. and Canada can receive technical support from Security Support or 1-866-PCSAFETY. There is no charge for support calls that are associated with security updates. For more information about available support options, see Microsoft Help and Support.
  • International customers can receive support from their local Microsoft subsidiaries. There is no charge for support that is associated with security updates. For more information about how to contact Microsoft for support issues, visit the International Support Web site.

Disclaimer

The information provided in the Microsoft Knowledge Base is provided "as is" without warranty of any kind. Microsoft disclaims all warranties, either express or implied, including the warranties of merchantability and fitness for a particular purpose. In no event shall Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers be liable for any damages whatsoever including direct, indirect, incidental, consequential, loss of business profits or special damages, even if Microsoft Corporation or its suppliers have been advised of the possibility of such damages. Some states do not allow the exclusion or limitation of liability for consequential or incidental damages so the foregoing limitation may not apply.

Revisions

  • V1.0 (November 10, 2009): Bulletin published.

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