Novell Groupwise arbitrary file retrieval vulnerability

Type securityvulns
Reporter Securityvulns
Modified 2001-10-16T00:00:00


FS Advisory ID: FS-101501-20-GWSE

Release Date: October 15, 2001

Product: Novell GroupWise

Vendor: Novell (

Vendor Advisory: See vendor website.

Type: Arbitrary file retrieval vulnerability

Severity: High

Author: Mike Shema ( Foundstone, Inc. (

Operating Systems: Windows 2000

Vulnerable versions: GroupWise 5.5, 6

Foundstone Advisory:


    A vulnerability exists with Novell's GroupWise server which
    allows for the arbitrary viewing of files anywhere on the
    system. This includes files outside of the web root, but on
    the same volume as the web server.


    The Novell GroupWise server has a web-based front-end for
    users to access e-mail and other functions of the server. The
    default login page is accessed by the URL:


    The webacc usually accesses templates from the "/" directory;
    however, the servlet will follow directory path traversal. 
    It is possible to view the full path of the server install by
    passing an invalid argument to the User.html variable:


    which will display the full path of the GroupWise install.

    Arbitrary files can be read by the webacc servlet by passing
    the appropriate file name and appending a null character to
    the string:


    Administrators should note that the Groupwise configuration
    files can be viewed with this exploit. Care should be taken 
    to limit the amount of sensitive data within these files.

Proof of concept

    From a browser, make the following URL request:



    Please contact the vendor for a solution. Customers should
    obtain upgraded software by contacting their customer support
    representative to obtain patches.

    The severity of this vulnerability and vulnerabilities of a 
    similar nature can be significantly reduced by installing the
    GroupWise server (or other application) files on a disk volume
    separate from the windows system root.


    We would also like to thank Novell for their reaction
    to this problem and their co-operation in heightening security
    awareness in the security community.


    The information contained in this advisory is the copyright
    (C) 2001 of Foundstone, Inc. and believed to be accurate at
    the time of printing, but no representation or warranty is
    given, express or implied, as to its accuracy or
    completeness. Neither the author nor the publisher accepts
    any liability whatsoever for any direct, indirect or
    conquential loss or damage arising in any way from any use
    of, or reliance placed on, this information for any purpose.
    This advisory may be redistributed provided that no fee is
    assigned and that the advisory is not modified in any way.