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Home » Hacking News » Red Hat RHSA-2003:181-01: GhostScript command execution

Red Hat RHSA-2003:181-01: GhostScript command execution

by Nikola Strahija on May 30th, 2003 A flaw in unpatched versions of Ghostscript before 7.07 allows malicious postscript files to execute arbitrary commands even with -dSAFER enabled.

Red Hat Security Advisory

Synopsis: Updated ghostscript packages fix vulnerability
Advisory ID: RHSA-2003:181-01
Issue date: 2003-05-30
Updated on: 2003-05-30
Product: Red Hat Linux
Cross references:
CVE Names: CAN-2003-0354

1. Topic:

New ghostscript packages fixing a command execution vulnerability are now

2. Relevant releases/architectures:

Red Hat Linux 7.1 - i386
Red Hat Linux 7.2 - i386, ia64
Red Hat Linux 7.3 - i386
Red Hat Linux 8.0 - i386
Red Hat Linux 9 - i386

3. Problem description:

GNU Ghostscript is an interpreter for the PostScript language, and is often
used when printing to printers that do not have their own built-in
PostScript interpreter.

A flaw in unpatched versions of Ghostscript before 7.07 allows malicious
postscript files to execute arbitrary commands even with -dSAFER enabled.
Note that this vulnerability does not affect Ghostscript when the Red Hat
-dPARANOIDSAFER option is used. Therefore, a malicious print job cannot be
used to exploit this vulnerability under Red Hat Linux.

Users of Ghostscript are advised to upgrade to these updated packages,
which contain a backported patch and are not vulnerable to this issue.

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 Red Hat Network. Many
people find this an easier way to apply updates. To use Red Hat Network,
launch the Red Hat Update Agent with the following command:


This will start an interactive process that will result in the appropriate
RPMs being upgraded on your system.

5. RPMs required:

Red Hat Linux 7.1:



Red Hat Linux 7.2:




Red Hat Linux 7.3:



Red Hat Linux 8.0:



Red Hat Linux 9:



6. Verification:

MD5 sum Package Name
17f5e1f86295677e4ad75fc202d26159 7.1/en/os/SRPMS/ghostscript-6.51-16.1.7x.1.src.rpm
db35a7a93ef26ff36c5880580504b43a 7.1/en/os/i386/ghostscript-6.51-16.1.7x.1.i386.rpm
d8b42f6af2bdb9edee0b50459c05ad96 7.2/en/os/SRPMS/ghostscript-6.51-16.3.src.rpm
05589f336b1f45d83d167de9d3d173ca 7.2/en/os/i386/ghostscript-6.51-16.3.i386.rpm
05f55eb8b6252e2c672b83778831e7c2 7.2/en/os/ia64/ghostscript-6.51-16.3.ia64.rpm
d7107c39c5d04e1afd1c8d67e203713f 7.3/en/os/SRPMS/ghostscript-6.52-9.5.src.rpm
ebba3a35451201da84c9898b639f85ef 7.3/en/os/i386/ghostscript-6.52-9.5.i386.rpm
3ce50b988a370f3ff09855abd1089341 8.0/en/os/SRPMS/ghostscript-7.05-20.1.src.rpm
59f89e35fa9ebe4487eaa80576cc7253 8.0/en/os/i386/ghostscript-7.05-20.1.i386.rpm
7dc5193bc01725273294c2c3f1959434 8.0/en/os/i386/ghostscript-devel-7.05-20.1.i386.rpm
17b0e8fa73551ee829fde0b9c20e98ac 8.0/en/os/i386/ghostscript-gtk-7.05-20.1.i386.rpm
df0c388dd079bb13e1ce0cf0dbcaee63 8.0/en/os/i386/hpijs-1.1-20.1.i386.rpm
0addc0a8db3d8744390432c5d1441fb3 9/en/os/SRPMS/ghostscript-7.05-32.1.src.rpm
d11602ea9618a680f1224b8fa3228f55 9/en/os/i386/ghostscript-7.05-32.1.i386.rpm
d27dd715e6a662727f7f582f52d80bfc 9/en/os/i386/ghostscript-devel-7.05-32.1.i386.rpm
f2ad407e793d21c730aa1e211c6bc1c9 9/en/os/i386/hpijs-1.3-32.1.i386.rpm

These packages are GPG signed by Red Hat for security. Our key is
available at

You can verify each package with the following command:

rpm --checksig -v

If you only wish to verify that each package has not been corrupted or
tampered with, examine only the md5sum with the following command:


7. References:

8. Contact:

The Red Hat security contact is . More contact
details at

Copyright 2003 Red Hat, Inc.

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