Vulnerability Note VU#142228

SGI IRIX vulnerable to DoS when user space program calls the PIOCSWATCH ioctl() function

Original Release date: 11 Jun 2003 | Last revised: 11 Jun 2003


A vulnerability in the SGI IRIX PIOCSWATCH ioctl() function may allow local attackers to crash the operating system.


SGI states that PIOCSWATCH ioctl "establishes or clears a set of watched areas in the traced process." According to SGI Security Advisory 20030603-01-P, a local attacker could crash the operating system by exploiting this vulnerability:

    It's been reported that non-root users can call the PIOCSWATCH ioctl() in its various invocations via a user space program and crash IRIX with a kernel panic. This could be used as a potential Denial of Service attack on the system. A local account on the system is required.


A local attacker may be able to crash the operating system.


The vendor encourages users to either upgrade to IRIX 6.5.21 (when it becomes available) or apply a patch as described in SGI Security Advisory 20030603-01-P.

Systems Affected (Learn More)

VendorStatusDate NotifiedDate Updated
SGIAffected-11 Jun 2003
If you are a vendor and your product is affected, let us know.

CVSS Metrics (Learn More)

Group Score Vector
Base N/A N/A
Temporal N/A N/A
Environmental N/A N/A



Thanks to SGI for reporting this vulnerability.

This document was written by Ian A Finlay, and is based on information contained within the SGI Security Advisory 20030603-01-P.

Other Information

  • CVE IDs: CAN-2003-0175
  • Date Public: 10 Jun 2003
  • Date First Published: 11 Jun 2003
  • Date Last Updated: 11 Jun 2003
  • Severity Metric: 2.16
  • Document Revision: 8


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