Bug 998227 (CVE-2013-4260) - CVE-2013-4260 ansible: predictible filename used for failed result in world writable directory
Summary: CVE-2013-4260 ansible: predictible filename used for failed result in world w...
Alias: CVE-2013-4260
Product: Security Response
Classification: Other
Component: vulnerability
Version: unspecified
Hardware: Unspecified
OS: Unspecified
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Red Hat Product Security
QA Contact:
Whiteboard: impact=moderate,public=20130821,repor...
Depends On: 999621 999626
Blocks: 998712
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2013-08-18 12:17 UTC by Michael S.
Modified: 2019-06-08 19:41 UTC (History)
7 users (show)

Fixed In Version:
Doc Type: Bug Fix
Doc Text:
Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2013-09-05 22:48:26 UTC

Attachments (Terms of Use)
patch to use a different directory and check the permission after (2.16 KB, patch)
2013-08-18 12:52 UTC, Michael S.
no flags Details | Diff

Description Michael S. 2013-08-18 12:17:28 UTC
Since version 1.2 of ansible, failed run ( due to connexion errors, or config error ) are listed into /var/tmp/ansible/$script_name.yml , with $script_name being the script name used ( or rather the playbook, in ansible linguo )

There is no verification on the file or directory here, and /var/tmp is world writable. 

Worst, due to it using a subdirectory under /var/tmp, some symlink protection may not apply ( not tested ). For example, if i create a directory /var/tmp/ansible with owner misc:users and a symlink to a file of joe, the kernel would permit to follow since the symlink and owner of the directory match. This permit to erase file content among others. I am not sure what kind of specific attack could be made by injecting ip and hostname in a specific file, but I am sure this exist.

Code is on 

Upstream was not notified yet AFAIK.

I do have a patch almost ready that do :
- verify the permission/owner of directory 
- create a unique directory derived from username ( so predictable ) with proper permission if doesn't exist

I just need to review and test.

The current code do cope with lack of permission on the directory so even if someone create a directory in advance, this will be handled "gracefully" ( I think a message would be better )

Comment 1 Michael S. 2013-08-18 12:52:01 UTC
Created attachment 787776 [details]
patch to use a different directory and check the permission after

Here is a patch that should fix the problem, I quickly tested and seems to be resilient enough. I may have forgot something about symlinks however, so a review would be welcome.

Comment 2 Vincent Danen 2013-08-20 16:07:00 UTC
Why not use tempfile.mkdtemp?


So something like this:

#!/usr/bin/env python
import tempfile
import os
f = tempfile.mkdtemp(prefix='foo', dir='/tmp')
    os.rename(f, '/tmp/foo')
except OSError:
    print 'Unable to rename directory!'

Probably better exception handling to see if the /tmp/foo directory is valid and owned by that user first, but for the actual creation, mkdtemp() will do so securely and os.rename will do so atomically.

Comment 3 Vincent Danen 2013-08-20 16:15:03 UTC

Red Hat would like to thank Michael Scherer for reporting this issue.

Comment 4 Michael S. 2013-08-20 20:27:17 UTC
I can hardly see how/where there is a need to create the directory in a atomic fashion in the first place, and since check (if the directory /tmp/foo exist and is suitable ) and rename would not be atomic, then we would have a race condition.

If someone create it between the time I check and the time I create the dir, the makedir will fail, and so directory is not used. And the owner wil be incorrect, since user cannot make chown to give file ( unless people have been playing with CAP_CHOWN but i will count that as "unlikely" )

Since the code is supposed to be able to fail, it is better to use this possibility in case of problem. But we will see the opinion of upstream.

Comment 5 Kevin Fenzi 2013-08-21 17:38:29 UTC
Upstream release with fixes announced: 


Can we unembargo and setup updates bugs links for the updates? 


Comment 6 Vincent Danen 2013-08-21 17:59:14 UTC
Created ansible tracking bugs for this issue:

Affects: fedora-all [bug 999621]
Affects: epel-6 [bug 999626]

Comment 7 Fedora Update System 2013-08-30 22:58:34 UTC
ansible-1.2.3-2.fc18 has been pushed to the Fedora 18 stable repository.  If problems still persist, please make note of it in this bug report.

Comment 8 Fedora Update System 2013-08-30 23:03:37 UTC
ansible-1.2.3-2.fc19 has been pushed to the Fedora 19 stable repository.  If problems still persist, please make note of it in this bug report.

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