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Posted Oct 16, 2003
Authored by Cesar Cerrudo

Security Advisory detailing original research from the Microsoft Local Troubleshooter ActiveX control buffer overflow that affects all versions of Microsoft Windows 2000.

tags | advisory, overflow, local, activex
systems | windows
SHA-256 | 3123057a0e33003e32d0c1dcbd81e7c68fe2683392807470c9f4cf6b670e203b


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Security Advisory

Name: Microsoft Local Troubleshooter ActiveX control
buffer overflow.
System Affected : Microsoft Windows 2000 (all
Severity : High
Remote exploitable : Yes
Author: Cesar Cerrudo.
Date: 10/16/03
Advisory Number: CC100309

Legal Notice:

This Advisory is Copyright (c) 2003 Cesar Cerrudo.
You may distribute it unmodified and for free. You may
NOT modify it and distribute it or distribute
parts of it without the author's written permission.
You may NOT use it for commercial intentions
(this means include it in vulnerabilities databases,
vulnerabilities scanners, any paid service,
etc.) without the author's written permission. You are
free to use Microsoft details
for commercial intentions.


The information in this advisory is believed to be
true though it may be false.
The opinions expressed in this advisory are my own and
not of any company. The usual standard
disclaimer applies, especially the fact that Cesar
Cerrudo is not liable for any damages caused
by direct or indirect use of the information or
functionality provided by this advisory.
Cesar Cerrudo bears no responsibility for content or
misuse of this advisory or any derivatives thereof.


Microsoft Local Troubleshooter is an ActiveX control,
it's not documented what it does,
but doing some research it's possible find out that
the ActiveX control is used in Microsoft Windows
Troubleshooting help. This control is installed by
default in Windows 2000 operating systems. When one of
its methods is called with a long string a buffer
overflow occurrs.


This ActiveX control has a few methods and properties,
one of the methods called "RunQuery2" has
a buffer overflow when it's called with a long string
in first parameter.

To reproduce the overflow just copy-and-paste the

<object id="test"
classid="CLSID:4B106874-DD36-11D0-8B44-00A024DD9EFF" >

Microsoft Local Troubleshooter ActiveX control is
marked as safe for scripting and initialization,
so the above sample will run without being blocked in
default Internet Explorer security configuration.

This vulnerability can be exploited through XSS,
sending to a victim an HTML e-mail,
or social engineering a user to open an HTML page
specially constructed. Explotation of this
vulnerability could allow an attacker to execute code
of his choice in the victim computer.

Vendor Status:

Microsoft was contacted, we worked together and
Microsoft released a fix.

Patch Available:


Thanks to: Jimmers and Brett Moore.

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