Vulnerability Note VU#922708

Microsoft Windows Shell fails to handle shortcut files properly

Original Release date: 11 Oct 2005 | Last revised: 11 Oct 2005


Microsoft Windows Shell does not properly handle some shortcut files and may permit arbitrary code execution when a specially-crafted file is opened.


Microsoft Windows supports files that point to another file, called "shortcut" files. These files have the .lnk extension, and may have properties that are passed to the target program or file.

Windows does not properly handle some properties on shortcut files and may be vulnerable to a specially-crafted shortcut file format. An attacker that has crafted such a shortcut file and that has convinced a user to open the file may be able to execute arbitrary code on the system. This file may be opened from an email message or a web link.

The arbitrary code is executed with the user's privileges, so if an administrative user has opened the file, the attacker may be able to take complete control of the system.


A remote, unauthenticated attacker may be able to execute arbitrary code and take complete control of the system.


Apply an update
Please see Microsoft Security Bulletin MS05-049 for more information on fixes, workarounds, and updates.

Systems Affected (Learn More)

VendorStatusDate NotifiedDate Updated
Microsoft CorporationAffected-11 Oct 2005
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



Microsoft reported this vulnerability, and in turn thank Cesar Cerrudo of Argeniss for information on the issue.

This document was written by Ken MacInnis.

Other Information

  • CVE IDs: CAN-2005-2122
  • Date Public: 11 Oct 2005
  • Date First Published: 11 Oct 2005
  • Date Last Updated: 11 Oct 2005
  • Severity Metric: 5.29
  • Document Revision: 7


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