.desktop files, serious security hole, virus-friendliness

Benedikt Meurer benny at xfce.org
Mon Apr 3 21:08:52 EEST 2006

Travis Watkins wrote:
>>Shouldn't be a problem. The editor will automatically sign the file when
>>saving, and there could also be a simple CLI frontend (probably as part
>>of desktop-file-utils, for people who want to edit .desktop files with a
>>generic text editor), which can be used to sign .desktop files with the
>>users (autogenerated) key.
> So now all $EVIL_APP has to do is run that command line util and it's
> good to go. Of course, in this case we're trying to stop $EVIL_APP
> from getting installed from just a .desktop file so I guess it's
> better than what we have now.

If $EVIL_APP has access to the system to run commands or read the users
home dir, then it's already too late. There's no need to protect
.desktop files afterwards, as $EVIL_APP could already run the commands
that would otherwise be put into the Exec field.


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