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Supermicro Fails At IPMI, Leaks Admin Passwords 102

drinkypoo writes: Zachary Wikholm of Security Incident Response Team (CARISIRT) has publicly announced a serious failure in IPMI BMC (management controller) security on at least 31,964 public-facing systems with motherboards made by SuperMicro: "Supermicro had created the password file PSBlock in plain text and left it open to the world on port 49152." These BMCs are running Linux 2.6.17 on a Nuvoton WPCM450 chip. An exploit will be rolled into metasploit shortly. There is already a patch available for the affected hardware.
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Supermicro Fails At IPMI, Leaks Admin Passwords

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  • by stox ( 131684 ) on Friday June 20, 2014 @01:55PM (#47283313) Homepage

    I manage 10,000 of them. To date lower infant mortality and lower long term failures than I had seen previously with Dell and HP. They also ship a lot faster than Dell or HP. Anyone who exposes their IPMI interfaces to the public internet deserves the results.

  • Ugh... (Score:3, Informative)

    by jasno ( 124830 ) on Friday June 20, 2014 @02:03PM (#47283413) Journal

    Working on a product based around these now...

    As far as I can tell, the Nuvoton WPCM450 is what contains the Matrox G200ew clone for graphics output. Thanks to XAA being discontinued in, the MGA driver is practically unusable for X at this point(even with an ancient, 2d window manager).

    Yet another reason to avoid this hardware.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 20, 2014 @02:05PM (#47283429)

    Many hosting companies that offer a complimentary IPMI or other KVM-over-IP will give the OOB box an IP address on the public Internet. They do this because it is cheaper than creating a private subnet on a dedicated firewall for each customer and letting them VPN in (like SoftLayer does). I doubt many of these exposed systems are from large corporations that run their own infrastructure, or even cloud providers. They are most likely from the retail hosting business. OVH, Hetzner, etc.

  • Re:Wha? (Score:5, Informative)

    by barc0001 ( 173002 ) on Friday June 20, 2014 @02:06PM (#47283439)

    IPMI is a management interface that allows you to do some neat remote administration tasks on these servers up to and including remote console so you can even install an OS on them over the network. They are a separate network interface with this running. I have several of these boxes deployed in my datacenters and firstly, the IPMI interface is configured with a non-public IP address, and secondly, the box is behind a firewall blocking all traffic that is not explicitly allowed, so while this is some sloppy-ass stuff on Supermicro's part, I am personally not that concerned. I am sure that there are many who are not nearly as cautious as I am though who might need to be concerned. Although if they are also that careless, chances are they might not have bothered to set up the IPMI interface as well or even plugged it in.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 20, 2014 @02:11PM (#47283493)

    By default, SuperMicro IPMI attaches to normal ethernet. So if you hook up a server to a public connection, you've exposed your IPMI. We caught this in a security audit, we added a dhcp honey pot to our static network to see if we could get any devices to announce themselves. We about shat our pants! There's probably a ton of people at risk not knowing this motherboard is insecure by default!

  • Re:Wha? (Score:5, Informative)

    by rahvin112 ( 446269 ) on Friday June 20, 2014 @02:29PM (#47283671)

    In simple language.

    It's a VNC connection to the graphics output (and some switches) independent of the main hardware. You can essentially VNC in and reboot the server, adjust bios options, mount a CD from your workstation to the server and install an OS. All while never having to touch the actual server.

    It's very handy and a total security nightmare if it's not secured properly which should be obvious from the fact that you can power cycle and have full bios access. As others have said, it should be totally obvious to anyone with any computer literacy that IPMI could be very dangerous.

  • By default, SuperMicro IPMI attaches to normal ethernet.

    Yes, I saw a mention of that on G+ today, but I lost it. So I went to the source [], I will save y'all the trouble of dicking with the PDF and jump straight to page 2-26 and excerpt the really interesting part:

    The default setting is Failover, which will allow IPMI to be connected from either the shared LAN port (LAN 1/0) or the dedicated IPMI LAN port. Precedence is given to the Dedicated LAN port over the shared LAN port.

    YE GODS. At least it's in the manual, which no one reads. You can select a port once you've got the system up and running, and once you do that it will stick, but until then it operates unsafely, as above. And if by chance there's no link on the management port during boot, perhaps because the management switch is also being cycled, then IPMI will appear on another interface.

    There's no excuse for not firewalling that off, but it's still also unacceptable behavior.

  • Re:Wha? (Score:5, Informative)

    by sexconker ( 1179573 ) on Friday June 20, 2014 @04:10PM (#47284461)

    A BMC is a baseboard management controller - it's essentially an always-on processor / chipset that can do basic shit like turn the machine on and off, let you get into BIOS over serial (and thus serial over LAN if your motherboard supports it), etc.
    As long as the box has power and the BMC has a connection (typically sharing one of the NICs), you can boot your machine and do shit with IPMI commands remotely, reconfigure the BIOS, whatever.

    OEMs build on this by slapping on another layer of shit that lets you do graphical redirection (instead of text), connect over the web, pipe in files and have them emulated as a bootable floppy, disc, or USB image, etc. This lets you do remote BIOS/UEFI/firmware updates for example, a remote OS installation, etc.
    DELL calls this shit DRAC or iDRAC, HP has iLO, etc.

    Nearly all servers come with a some sort of BMC that supports IPMI. You do not have to pay for the advanced shit that you'll really only ever use once.

    When issuing IPMI commands you can require a username and password. You can also enable encryption so that these are not sent in plaintext.
    It sounds like TFS is saying that Supermicro had a file containing a list of IPMI passwords in a publicly-accessible space.
    Note that if this file just had passwords and not the corresponding encryption keys (RCMP+), they would still be useful. Most implementations make RMCP+ encryption optional - it's on the client to specify the key and keytype used, and its only real purpose is to prevent a MITM from sniffing the username and password.

Doubt isn't the opposite of faith; it is an element of faith. - Paul Tillich, German theologian and historian