Public Vulnerability Reports

Novell eDirectory NCP Get Extension Information Request Memory Corruption Vulnerability



Novell eDirectory is cross platform directory server. NetWare Core Protocol, commonly referred to as NCP, is used by eDirectory to synchronize data between servers in the directory tree. NCP supports various request types, one of which is the 'Get NCP Extension Information By Name Request.'

For more information, see the vendor's site found at the following link.


Remote exploitation of a memory corruption vulnerability in Novell Inc.'s eDirectory could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service.

The vulnerability exists due to an area of heap memory being used after it has already been freed. By sending malformed data it is possible to cause an area of heap memory to be freed by one thread, and then reused after another thread allocates the same area of memory. This results in the original thread operating on the data changed by the second thread, which may lead to the execution of arbitrary code.


Exploitation of this vulnerability results in the execution of arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service, usually SYSTEM. In order to trigger this vulnerability, an attacker needs to send a series of specifically timed requests and have some degree of control of the memory layout of the process. In Labs testing, it was often difficult to reliably trigger the vulnerability. While difficult, the possibility of executing arbitrary code should not be ruled out.


iDefense has confirmed the existence of this vulnerability in eDirectory version 8.8 SP2 for Windows. The Linux version does not appear to be affected. Previous versions may also be affected.


iDefense is currently unaware of any workarounds for this issue.


Novell has released a patch for this vulnerability and advises that all users of Novell eDirectory should update.


A Mitre Corp. Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) number has not been assigned yet.


03/10/2008 Initial vendor notification
03/14/2008 Initial vendor reply
10/03/2008 Public Disclosure


The discoverer of this vulnerability wishes to remain anonymous.

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Copyright © 2008 Verisign, Inc.

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