Bug 1571881 (CVE-2018-10981, xsa262) - CVE-2018-10981 xsa262 xen: qemu may drive Xen into unbounded loop (XSA-262)
Summary: CVE-2018-10981 xsa262 xen: qemu may drive Xen into unbounded loop (XSA-262)
Alias: CVE-2018-10981, xsa262
Product: Security Response
Classification: Other
Component: vulnerability
Version: unspecified
Hardware: All
OS: Linux
Target Milestone: ---
Assignee: Red Hat Product Security
QA Contact:
Depends On: 1576680
Blocks: 1571887
TreeView+ depends on / blocked
Reported: 2018-04-25 15:10 UTC by Adam Mariš
Modified: 2021-02-17 00:25 UTC (History)
13 users (show)

Fixed In Version:
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Clone Of:
Last Closed: 2018-04-26 13:45:07 UTC

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Description Adam Mariš 2018-04-25 15:10:21 UTC

When Xen sends requests to a device model, the next expected action
inside Xen is tracked using a state field.  The requests themselves
are placed in a memory page shared with the device model, so that the
device model can communicate to Xen its progress on the request.  The
state field is in the request itself, where the device model may write
to it.  Xen correctly rejects invalid state values, but failed to reject
invalid transitions between states.  As a result, a device model which
switches a request between two states at the right times can drive Xen
into an unbounded loop.


A malicious unprivileged device model can cause a Denial of Service
(DoS) affecting the entire host.  Specifically, it may prevent use of a
physical CPU for an indeterminate period of time.


All Xen versions are vulnerable.

Only x86 systems are affected.  ARM systems are not affected.

Only HVM guests can expose this vulnerability.  PV and PVH guests cannot
expose this vulnerability, but note that the domains being able to
leverage the vulnerability are PV or PVH ones, running the device model.

This vulnerability is only applicable to Xen systems using stub domains.


Running only PV or PVH guests will avoid this issue.

(The security of a Xen system using stub domains is still better than
with a qemu-dm running as an unrestricted dom0 process.  Therefore
users with these configurations should not switch to an unrestricted
dom0 qemu-dm.)

External References:


Comment 2 Adam Mariš 2018-05-10 06:49:50 UTC

Name: the Xen project
Upstream: Jan Beulich (SUSE)

Comment 3 Adam Mariš 2018-05-10 06:50:14 UTC
Created xen tracking bugs for this issue:

Affects: fedora-all [bug 1576680]

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