Debian DLA-1423-1 : linux-4.9 new package (Spectre)

high Nessus Plugin ID 111165


The remote Debian host is missing a security update.


Linux 4.9 has been packaged for Debian 8 as linux-4.9. This provides a supported upgrade path for systems that currently use kernel packages from the 'jessie-backports' suite.

There is no need to upgrade systems using Linux 3.16, as that kernel version will also continue to be supported in the LTS period.

This backport does not include the following binary packages :

hyperv-daemons libcpupower1 libcpupower-dev libusbip-dev linux-compiler-gcc-4.9-x86 linux-cpupower linux-libc-dev usbip

Older versions of most of those are built from other source packages in Debian 8.

Several vulnerabilities have been discovered in the Linux kernel that may lead to a privilege escalation, denial of service or information leaks.


Further instances of code that was vulnerable to Spectre variant 1 (bounds-check bypass) have been mitigated.


It was discovered that the performance events subsystem did not properly validate the value of the kernel.perf_cpu_time_max_percent sysctl. Setting a large value could have an unspecified security impact. However, only a privileged user can set this sysctl.


The syzbot software found that the vhost driver did not initialise message buffers which would later be read by user processes. A user with access to the /dev/vhost-net device could use this to read sensitive information from the kernel or other users' processes.


Qualys reported that a user able to mount FUSE filesystems can create a process such that when another process attempting to read its command line will be blocked for an arbitrarily long time. This could be used for denial of service, or to aid in exploiting a race condition in the other program.


The syzbot software found that the DCCP implementation of sendmsg() does not check the socket state, potentially leading to a NULL pointer dereference. A local user could use this to cause a denial of service (crash).


Multiple researchers have discovered that Speculative Store Bypass (SSB), a feature implemented in many processors, could be used to read sensitive information from another context. In particular, code in a software sandbox may be able to read sensitive information from outside the sandbox. This issue is also known as Spectre variant 4.

This update allows the issue to be mitigated on some x86 processors by disabling SSB. This requires an update to the processor's microcode, which is non-free. It may be included in an update to the system BIOS or UEFI firmware, or in a future update to the intel-microcode or amd64-microcode packages.

Disabling SSB can reduce performance significantly, so by default it is only done in tasks that use the seccomp feature. Applications that require this mitigation should request it explicitly through the prctl() system call. Users can control where the mitigation is enabled with the spec_store_bypass_disable kernel parameter.


Jakub Jirasek reported race conditions in the USB/IP host driver. A malicious client could use this to cause a denial of service (crash or memory corruption), and possibly to execute code, on a USB/IP server.


A physically present attacker who unplugs a SAS cable can cause a denial of service (memory leak and WARN).

CVE-2018-10087, CVE-2018-10124

zhongjiang found that the wait4() and kill() system call implementations did not check for the invalid pid value of INT_MIN. If a user passed this value, the behaviour of the code was formally undefined and might have had a security impact.


Andy Lutomirski and Mika Penttilä reported that KVM for x86 processors did not perform a necessary privilege check when emulating certain instructions. This could be used by an unprivileged user in a guest VM to escalate their privileges within the guest.

CVE-2018-10876, CVE-2018-10877, CVE-2018-10878, CVE-2018-10879, CVE-2018-10880, CVE-2018-10881, CVE-2018-10882, CVE-2018-10883

Wen Xu at SSLab, Gatech, reported that crafted ext4 filesystem images could trigger a crash or memory corruption. A local user able to mount arbitrary filesystems, or an attacker providing filesystems to be mounted, could use this for denial of service or possibly for privilege escalation.


Dan Carpenter reported that the optical disc driver (cdrom) does not correctly validate the parameter to the CDROM_MEDIA_CHANGED ioctl. A user with access to a cdrom device could use this to cause a denial of service (crash).


Piotr Gabriel Kosinski and Daniel Shapira reported that the SCSI optical disc driver (sr) did not allocate a sufficiently large buffer for sense data. A user with access to a SCSI optical disc device that can produce more than 64 bytes of sense data could use this to cause a denial of service (crash or memory corruption), and possibly for privilege escalation.


Shankara Pailoor reported that a crafted JFS filesystem image could trigger a denial of service (memory corruption). This could possibly also be used for privilege escalation.


The syzbot software found that the SCSI generic driver (sg) would in some circumstances allow reading data from uninitialised buffers, which could include sensitive information from the kernel or other tasks. However, only privileged users with the CAP_SYS_ADMIN or CAP_SYS_RAWIO capability were allowed to do this, so this has little or no security impact.

For Debian 8 'Jessie', these problems have been fixed in version 4.9.110-1~deb8u1. This update additionally fixes Debian bugs #860900, #872907, #892057, #896775, #897590, and #898137; and includes many more bug fixes from stable updates 4.9.89-4.9.110 inclusive.

We recommend that you upgrade your linux-4.9 packages.

NOTE: Tenable Network Security has extracted the preceding description block directly from the DLA security advisory. Tenable has attempted to automatically clean and format it as much as possible without introducing additional issues.


Upgrade the affected packages.

See Also

Plugin Details

Severity: High

ID: 111165

File Name: debian_DLA-1423.nasl

Version: 1.9

Type: local

Agent: unix

Published: 7/20/2018

Updated: 1/11/2021

Supported Sensors: Frictionless Assessment Agent, Nessus Agent, Agentless Assessment

Risk Information


Risk Factor: High

Score: 8.4


Risk Factor: High

Base Score: 7.2

Temporal Score: 7.2

Vector: CVSS2#AV:L/AC:L/Au:N/C:C/I:C/A:C


Risk Factor: High

Base Score: 7.8

Temporal Score: 7.8

Vector: CVSS:3.0/AV:L/AC:L/PR:L/UI:N/S:U/C:H/I:H/A:H

Temporal Vector: CVSS:3.0/E:H/RL:X/RC:X

Vulnerability Information

CPE: p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-compiler-gcc-4.9-arm, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-doc-4.9, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-686, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-686-pae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-all, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-all-amd64, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-all-armel, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-all-armhf, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-all-i386, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-amd64, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-armmp, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-armmp-lpae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-common, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-common-rt, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-marvell, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-686-pae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-headers-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-amd64, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-686, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-686-pae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-686-pae-dbg, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-amd64, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-amd64-dbg, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-armmp, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-armmp-lpae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-marvell, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-686-pae, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-686-pae-dbg, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-amd64, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-image-4.9.0-0.bpo.7-rt-amd64-dbg, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-kbuild-4.9, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-manual-4.9, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-perf-4.9, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-source-4.9, p-cpe:/a:debian:debian_linux:linux-support-4.9.0-0.bpo.7, cpe:/o:debian:debian_linux:8.0

Required KB Items: Host/local_checks_enabled, Host/Debian/release, Host/Debian/dpkg-l

Exploit Available: true

Exploit Ease: Exploits are available

Patch Publication Date: 7/18/2018

Vulnerability Publication Date: 1/4/2018

Exploitable With


Reference Information

CVE: CVE-2017-18255, CVE-2017-5753, CVE-2018-1000204, CVE-2018-10021, CVE-2018-10087, CVE-2018-10124, CVE-2018-10853, CVE-2018-10876, CVE-2018-10877, CVE-2018-10878, CVE-2018-10879, CVE-2018-10880, CVE-2018-10881, CVE-2018-10882, CVE-2018-10883, CVE-2018-10940, CVE-2018-1118, CVE-2018-1120, CVE-2018-1130, CVE-2018-11506, CVE-2018-12233, CVE-2018-3639, CVE-2018-5814