Public Vulnerability Reports

HP Network Node Manager Multiple Command Injection Vulnerabilities



HP Network Node Manager (NNM) is an application suite that is used to map out and manage network topography. NNM runs on a variety of platforms, including Linux and multiple versions of Windows. For more information, see the vendor's site found at the following link.


Remote exploitation of multiple command injection vulnerabilities in Hewlett-Packard Development Co. LP (HP)'s Network Node Manager, could allow an attacker to execute arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service.

Multiple command injection vulnerabilities are present in NNM CGI applications.

The vulnerabilities are very similar and occur in the webappmon.exe and OpenView5.exe program. Part of the functionality of these applications is to start other programs and collect their output. In order to perform this, they each execute external programs along with any attacker controllable arguments for the application. The arguments may contain shell meta-characters. This allows an attacker to run arbitrary shell commands. The arguments are not filtered before being passed to the external program. This results in attacker supplied commands being run on the host.


Exploitation of these vulnerabilities results in the execution of arbitrary code with the privileges of the affected service. On RedHat Enterprise 4, the application is started as the user 'bin'. All that is required for exploitation is the ability to create a TCP connection to port 80 on the targeted host.


iDefense has confirmed the existence of these vulnerabilities in Network Node Manager version 7.53 for Linux. Previous versions, as well as versions for other Unix based operating systems, may also be affected.


By default, the NNM CGI applications do not require a user to be authenticated. By changing the session.conf file and setting UserLogin to ON, it is possible to require valid credentials in order to run. The 'ovhtpasswd' application can then be used to add valid credentials to the password file.


HP has released a patch which addresses this issue. For more information, consult their advisory at the following URL.


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the name CVE-2008-4559 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (, which standardizes names for security problems.


06/19/2008 Initial Contact
06/19/2008 Vendor Case numbers set
07/10/2008 PoC sent
01/22/2009 Vendor says patch is ready
02/05/2009 Requested CVE from vendor
02/05/2009 Requested date coordination
02/06/2009 Coordinated Public Disclosure


The discoverer of this vulnerability wishes to remain anonymous.

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