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第 9 章 Developer's Best Practices for OS Security

9.1. Best practices for security review and design
9.2. Creating users and groups for software daemons
This chapter introduces some best secure coding practices for developers writing Debian packages. If you are really interested in secure coding I recommend you read David Wheeler's and by Mark G. Graff and Kenneth R. van Wyk (O'Reilly, 2003).

9.1. Best practices for security review and design

Developers that are packaging software should make a best effort to ensure that the installation of the software, or its use, does not introduce security risks to either the system it is installed on or its users.
In order to do so, they should make their best to review the source code of the package and detect any flaws that might introduce security bugs before releasing the software or distributing a new version. It is acknowledged that the cost of fixing bugs grows for different stages of its development, so it is easier (and cheaper) to fix bugs when designing than when the software has been deployed and is in maintenance mode (some studies say that the cost in this later phase is sixty times higher). Although there are some tools that try to automatically detect these flaws, developers should strive to learn about the different kind of security flaws in order to understand them and be able to spot them in the code they (or others) have written.
The programming bugs which lead to security bugs typically include:, format string overflows, heap overflows and integer overflows (in C/C++ programs), temporary (in scripts), and command injection (in servers) and, and (in the case of web-oriented applications). For a more complete information on security bugs review Fortify's
Some of these issues might not be easy to spot unless you are an expert in the programming language the software uses, but some security problems are easy to detect and fix. For example, finding temporary race conditions due to misuse of temporary directories can easily be done just by running grep -r "/tmp/" .. Those calls can be reviewed and replace the hardcoded filenames using temporary directories to calls to either mktemp or tempfile in shell scripts, File::Temp(3perl) in Perl scripts, or tmpfile(3) in C/C++.
There are a set of tools available to assist to the security code review phase. These include rats, flawfinder and pscan. For more information, read the
When packaging software developers have to make sure that they follow common security principles, including:
If you have to do any of the above make sure the programs that might run with higher privileges have been audited for security bugs. If you are unsure, or need help, contact the In the case of setuid/setgid binaries, follow the Debian policy section regarding
For more information, specific to secure programming, make sure you read (or point your upstream to) and the portal.