Feeds

Win XP slays buffer overflow bugs

Source code security audit

  • alert
  • submit to reddit

High performance access to file storage

Microsoft has eradicated buffer overflows with Windows XP, following a source code security audit, group veep Jim Allchin claimed during a keynote at the Intel Developers Forum in San Jose.

A buffer overflow, which may cause a system or process to crash, happens when a program or process attempts to store more data in a buffer than intended. This is very useful for hackers because it enables them to create specially formatted malformed requests which will overflow a buffer and leave their code at parts on the system where it might subsequently be executed.

Buffer overflows first came to prominence with the Morris worm in 1988 and are still causing trouble even now. Variants of the Code Red worm exploited a buffer overflow flaw in the indexing service DLL of Microsoft's IIS Web server.

As a CERT advisory explains, IIS Web server on beta versions of Win XP were among those vulnerable to the problem.

It could be assumed elementary testing or code review would pick up buffer overflow problems in practice it is much more difficult.

A quick search revealed few published references on the prevention of buffer overflow problems, an occupational hazard of software programming that is not peculiar to Redmond. For that reason it'll be interesting to see the results of Microsoft's work." ®

Related Stories

Unique ID is built into WinXP final build
Sun cries wolf over Windows XP
Serious Outlook hole patched
Buffer the FTP Slayer
BIND holes mean big trouble on the Net

High performance access to file storage

More from The Register

next story
Parent gabfest Mumsnet hit by SSL bug: My heart bleeds, grins hacker
Natter-board tells middle-class Britain to purée its passwords
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Obama allows NSA to exploit 0-days: report
If the spooks say they need it, they get it
Web data BLEEDOUT: Users to feel the pain as Heartbleed bug revealed
Vendors and ISPs have work to do updating firmware - if it's possible to fix this
Snowden-inspired crypto-email service Lavaboom launches
German service pays tribute to Lavabit
One year on: diplomatic fail as Chinese APT gangs get back to work
Mandiant says past 12 months shows Beijing won't call off its hackers
Call of Duty 'fragged using OpenSSL's Heartbleed exploit'
So it begins ... or maybe not, says one analyst
NSA denies it knew about and USED Heartbleed encryption flaw for TWO YEARS
Agency forgets it exists to protect communications, not just spy on them
prev story

Whitepapers

Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
HP ArcSight ESM solution helps Finansbank
Based on their experience using HP ArcSight Enterprise Security Manager for IT security operations, Finansbank moved to HP ArcSight ESM for fraud management.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Mobile application security study
Download this report to see the alarming realities regarding the sheer number of applications vulnerable to attack, as well as the most common and easily addressable vulnerability errors.