[ros-dev] Code Auditing Questions

M Bealby mbealby at gmail.com
Sun Jan 22 19:43:14 CET 2006

Hey all,

As my exams are now over I will hopefully be having more free time
available to put into ReactOS security.  I would like to perform a
security audit of the code base.  I've jotted down a few thoughts and
suggestions of mine below and would appreciate feedback on them.


I hope to work on the kernel mode code first, working up through the
layers up to application API level code.  I feel this is the best
method because, as it has been mentioned before to me on IRC / email ,
some functions canot check the parameters that are passed down to
lower functions.

I understand the following code to run in kernel mode:


If you know of any more please let me know.

I was thinking of checking out an entire svn revision and updating
only after I had checked an entire library.  What do other people
think on this?

I will predominatly be working just from the code source, but after
playing around with Doxygen I have found it to be incredibly useful
for quick referencing typedefs and function parameter calls.

What am I looking for?

I am only a single person, so code auditing will be a slow process at
the moment.  I wish to check for the following vulnerabilities:

Incorrect null termination.
Buffer overflows.
Premature termination.
Lack of input validation.
Bad calculations.
Off by one / few.

Personally I feel this list of six common vulnerability types should
be enough to thwart the most common of attacks, but if anyone else
feels some other class of vulnerability is missing from the list
please let me know.  Obviously if I find any other bugs then they will
be reported as well.

Reporting of errors?

How should I go about reporting the errors?  I was previously told to
report all occasions of the incorrect uses of the RtlAllocateHeap
function under the same bug number (no 1110, some still unfixed).  Is
this the preferred method for my code auditing results?  I would like
to submit the bugs as quickly as possible, so I can keep my working
tree as close to possible to head, but this may mean submitting
multiple bug reports for the same problem.  I think that the best
option is to submit similar bugs in the same module under the same
report, but open a new bug if the same vulnerability occurs in another
module. Thoughts?

These are just some of my ideas that are floating around in my head at
the moment.  I would welcome all feedback on this matter and I think I
may create a wiki page with the same information on.  Again, thoughts
on this would be nice as I haven't really used wiki's before.


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