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Malformed TCP/IP Print Request Vulnerability

By sending a specially-malformed print request via the LPD Server service, a malicious user could cause the service to stop, preventing the computer from servicing some print requests. Other services may also be affected by stopping this service, including the Dynamic Host Control Protocol (DHCP) service.

Issue

TCP/IP Printing Services is an RFC 1179-compliant printing service designed for environments that use the Berkeley Remote Printing protocols, also known as LPD and LPR. (In Windows 2000, TCP/IP Printing Services are also known as Print Services for Unix). A specially-malformed print request could cause TCPSVC.EXE to crash, which would not only prevent the server from providing printing services, but also would stop several other services, most importantly DHCP. Any affected services could be put back into service by restarting them; it would not be necessary to reboot the machine.

It is important to note that TCP/IP Printing Services is different from the native Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000 printing services. TCP/IP Printing Services is not installed by default, and the vulnerability at hand here would not allow a malicious user to disrupt printing via the native Windows NT 4.0 and Windows 2000 printing services.

Affected Products

  • Windows NT/2000

Solution

Software patches are available from the following locations:

Further Details

Source: Microsoft Corporation

Reference: Microsoft Corporation

Updated: March 30, 2000

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