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Date: Wed, 28 Jan 2004 22:29:00 -0800
From: Jesse Keating <>
Subject: [FLSA-2004:1207] Updated cvs resolves security vulnerability

Hash: SHA1

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               Fedora Legacy Update Advisory

Synopsis:          Updated cvs resolves security vulnerability
Advisory ID:       FLSA:1207
Issue date:        2004-01-28
Product:           Red Hat Linux
Keywords:          Security
Cross references:
CVE Names:         CAN-2003-0977
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1. Topic:

Updated cvs packages are now available that fix a security vulnerability
which may allow cvs to attempt to create files and directories in the root
file system, as well as prevent the cvsd from retaining root privileges
after a user login.

2. Relevant releases/architectures:

Red Hat Linux 7.2 - i386
Red Hat Linux 7.3 - i386
Red Hat Linux 8.0 - i386

3. Problem description:

CVS (Concurrent Version System) is a version control system that can
record the history of your files (usually, but not always, source
code). CVS only stores the differences between versions, instead of
every version of every file you have ever created. CVS also keeps a log
of who, when, and why changes occurred.

A flaw was found in versions of CVS prior to 1.11.10 where a malformed
module request could cause the CVS server to attempt to create files or
directories at the root level of the file system. However, normal file
system permissions would prevent the creation of these misplaced
directories. The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures project
( has assigned the name CAN-2003-0977 to this issue.

Another flaw was found that would allow the cvsd process to continue to run
as root after a user login.  Previously, any user with the ability to
write the CVSROOT/passwd file could execute arbitrary code as the root
user on systems with CVS pserver access enabled.

Users of cvs should update to these update packages, which contain a
backported security patch that corrects this issue.

Fedora Legacy would like to thank Seth Vidal, Jason Rohwedder and Christian
Pearce for providing a backported fix for Red Hat Linux 7.2, 7.3, and 8.0.

4. Solution:

Before applying this update, make sure all previously released errata
relevant to your system have been applied.

To update all RPMs for your particular architecture, run:

rpm -Fvh [filenames]

where [filenames] is a list of the RPMs you wish to upgrade.  Only those
RPMs which are currently installed will be updated.  Those RPMs which are
not installed but included in the list will not be updated.  Note that you
can also use wildcards (*.rpm) if your current directory *only* contains
the desired RPMs.

Please note that this update is also available via yum and apt.  Many
people find this an easier way to apply updates.  To use yum issue:

yum update

or to use apt:

apt-get update; apt-get upgrade

This will start an interactive process that will result in the appropriate
RPMs being upgraded on your system.  This assumes that you have yum or
apt-get configured for obtaining Fedora Legacy content. Please visit for directions on how to configure
yum and apt-get.

5. Bug IDs fixed: - 1207 - cvs security patches

6. RPMs required:

Red Hat Linux 7.2:


Red Hat Linux 7.3:


Red Hat Linux 8.0:


7. Verification:

SHA1 sum                                 Package Name
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These packages are GPG signed by Fedora Legacy for security.  Our key is
available from

You can verify each package with the following command:

    rpm --checksig -v <filename>

If you only wish to verify that each package has not been corrupted or
tampered with, examine only the sha1sum with the following command:

    sha1sum <filename>

8. References:

9. Contact:

The Fedora Legacy security contact is <>. More
project details at

- --
Jesse Keating RHCE	(
Fedora Legacy Team	(
Version: GnuPG v1.2.3 (GNU/Linux)


Full-Disclosure - We believe in it.

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