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[ZDNET]Linux trails Windows in patching 0-days in 2012

post #1 of 38
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Quote:
Vulnerabilities in the Linux kernel fixed in 2012 went unpatched for more than two years on average, more than twice as long as it took to fix unpatched flaws in current Windows OSes, according security firm Trustwave.

Zero-day flaws — software vulnerabilities for which no patch is available — in the Linux kernel that were patched last year took an average of 857 days to be closed, Trustwave found. In comparison zero-day flaws in current Windows OSes patched last year were fixed in 375 days.




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post #2 of 38
Perhaps because Linux is an open source OS, not every patch is documented / distributed as effectivley as windows updates are, and so the numbers in this report are skewed / flawed?

I'd like to think admins get the patches they need.
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post #3 of 38
That's an interesting read. WhiteCrane is right in his comments, I'd like to add that it does not mention how quickly non-kernel related issues are patched compared to Windows.

For example, I think RedHat would be pretty prompt about addressing issues...
    
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post #4 of 38
The article is better than this thread, which is misleading, but even the article didn't represent everything. The term "zero day" sounds bad, but the linux ones weren't bad at all. The first one was a local exploit that could only possibly turn into a denial of service attack. No privilege escalation. The second one affected HFS, which is Apple's filesystem. Almost no one uses it on Linux.

That is why they explain in the article that zero days and exploits in general are hard to measure on Linux because an exploit that affects one distribution might not affect others (RedHat wasn't affected by the HFS one).

From the article, in terms of number of vulnerabilities and seriousness of the vulnerabilities, Windows is still behind.
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post #5 of 38
What exactly does this article mean by "Linux kernel"? Are they referring to a specific kernel, or to every kernel released for a 2 year period, or what? I find it hard to believe that every Linux kernel revision released in any given 857 day period has the same vulnerability. The code is simply too frequently revised and altered for that to be believable. I may be wrong as I'm no Linux expert, but something doesn't pass my smell test here.
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post #6 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by frozne View Post

The article is better than this thread, which is misleading, but even the article didn't represent everything. The term "zero day" sounds bad, but the linux ones weren't bad at all. The first one was a local exploit that could only possibly turn into a denial of service attack. No privilege escalation. The second one affected HFS, which is Apple's filesystem. Almost no one uses it on Linux.

That is why they explain in the article that zero days and exploits in general are hard to measure on Linux because an exploit that affects one distribution might not affect others (RedHat wasn't affected by the HFS one).

From the article, in terms of number of vulnerabilities and seriousness of the vulnerabilities, Windows is still behind.

Not to mention we don't control HSF(+), that's all on Apple.
post #7 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chakravant View Post

What exactly does this article mean by "Linux kernel"? Are they referring to a specific kernel, or to every kernel released for a 2 year period, or what? I find it hard to believe that every Linux kernel revision released in any given 857 day period has the same vulnerability. The code is simply too frequently revised and altered for that to be believable. I may be wrong as I'm no Linux expert, but something doesn't pass my smell test here.

The very basic frame of the Linux OS, that being the kernel. It's like the frame/structure of a building.
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post #8 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by HybridCore View Post

The very basic frame of the Linux OS, that being the kernel. It's like the frame/structure of a building.
Yes, but doesn't Linux revise its kernel all the time? I seem to remember downloading 2.6.32, 2.6.34, etc. updates all the time. Unless that is referring to some other Linux kernel, and I'm confused.
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post #9 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by Chakravant View Post

Yes, but doesn't Linux revise its kernel all the time? I seem to remember downloading 2.6.32, 2.6.34, etc. updates all the time. Unless that is referring to some other Linux kernel, and I'm confused.

It's not quite as frequent as patches which get released much faster.
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post #10 of 38
Quote:
Originally Posted by HybridCore View Post

It's not quite as frequent as patches which get released much faster.
According to wikipedia, there's been 7 in the past 2 years. 2.4.37.11, 2.6.37, 2.6.39, 2.6.39.4, 3.0, 3.2, and 3.8. Is this article claiming all 7 of them had this vulnerability? That seems like a hard pill to swallow.
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