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VMware ESX 3.5, Patch ESX350-200809404-SG: Security Update to VMware-esx-vmx


Release Date: 03-Oct-2008

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Product VersionsESX 3.5
Patch ClassificationSecurity
Virtual Machine Migration or Shutdown RequiredYes
ESX Host Reboot RequiredYes
PRs Fixed

309809 319964 327164

Affected Hardware

Systems with AMD Barcelona processors running ESX 3.5 U1 or U2

Affected SoftwareGuest operating systems: 64-bit Windows, 64-bit FreeBSD
RPMs Included
Related CVE numbersCVE-2008-4279


Summaries and Symptoms

This patch fixes the following issues:

  • VMware addresses an in-guest privilege escalation on 64-bit guest operating systems.

    VMware products emulate hardware functions including CPU, memory, and I/O. 

    A flaw in VMware's CPU hardware emulation could allow the virtual CPU to jump to an incorrect memory address. Exploitation of this issue on the guest operating system does not lead to a compromise of the host system, but could lead to a privilege escalation on guest operating systems. An attacker would need to have a user account on the guest operating system. 

    Affected guest operating systems include 64-bit Windows, 64-bit FreeBSD, and possibly other 64-bit operating systems.

    The issue does not affect the 64-bit versions of Linux guest operating systems.

    VMware would like to thank Derek Soeder for discovering this issue and working with us on its remediation.

    The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures Project (cve.mitre.org) has assigned the name CVE-2008-4279 this issue.

  • VI Client shows host as not responding during HA-DRS cluster operations.

    During HA-DRS cluster operations like adding or removing a host from a DRS cluster or applying DRS recommendations, the VI Client might show the host as "Not responding," even when the host IP can be reached.

    Note: This patch in conjunction with VirtualCenter 2.5 Update 3 (upcoming release) provides a full resolution to this issue.

  • VMware has identified an issue on systems with AMD Barcelona processors running ESX/ESXi 3.5 Update 1 or Update 2. While performing a VMotion from or to one of these systems, the virtual machine might fail to respond with the following symptoms:

    • Virtual machines running Microsoft 64-bit Windows operating systems might crash (blue screen) with the message: mfehidk.sys PAGE_FAULT_IN_NONPAGED_AREA.

    • Virtual machines running Linux 64-bit operating systems might experience a panic.

      Note: Some customers have seen this behavior using anti-virus software in the previously-mentioned environments. 
      Deployment Considerations

None beyond the required patch bundles and reboot information listed in the table, above.

Based on VMware KB 1007089

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