--On October 15, 2006 4:31:48 PM -0400 DAve <[EMAIL PROTECTED]>
That is a bit extreme. I have a full workload, I put in about 60 hours a
week (I work a lot of weekends, I'm working now). I have servers running
all different version of apps. I can't go around upgrading everything at
the drop of a hat. I would be divorced within a month.
If you read the security alerts carefully you will find many require a
shell (We don't offer them to clients), some require a specific app to
be running that you may not need (rm -f /usr/local/bin/vulnerable_app),
and sometimes a simple code audit will tell you if you are vulnerable.
It is also not uncommon that a security alert is issued for a problem
that has not be proven in the wild.
There are plenty of reasons to not follow a security alert, many of them
quite valid. Upgrading mission critical systems without throughly
understanding the implications just because someone screamed SECURITY!,
now that is foolhardy.
That wasn't the situation here.
Look, there are several possible scenarios where installing a vulnerable
app is less of a risk than not installing the app at all. Business
functionality *is* important. However, to arbitrarily say "Use
DISABLE_VULNERABILITIES" is the answer to an app that won't install is
always a wrong answer. *At a minimum* it should come with a warning of
the possible risks. Furthermore *upgrading* from a non-vulnerabile app to
a vulnerable app simply because "it's the latest" is foolhardy in the
I don't think my statement was any more extreme than "Just use
DISABLE_VULNERABILITIES and you can install the app" with no warning of
the risks. *Especially* when the app is as highly scrutinized as php is
(not to mention how vulnerabilities are being found in it all the time.)
Paul Schmehl ([EMAIL PROTECTED])
Adjunct Information Security Officer
The University of Texas at Dallas