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CWE-58: Path Equivalence: Windows 8.3 Filename

Weakness ID: 58
Abstraction: Variant
Status: Incomplete
Presentation Filter:
+ Description

Description Summary

The software contains a protection mechanism that restricts access to a long filename on a Windows operating system, but the software does not properly restrict access to the equivalent short "8.3" filename.

Extended Description

On later Windows operating systems, a file can have a "long name" and a short name that is compatible with older Windows file systems, with up to 8 characters in the filename and 3 characters for the extension. These "8.3" filenames, therefore, act as an alternate name for files with long names, so they are useful pathname equivalence manipulations.

+ Time of Introduction
  • Implementation
+ Applicable Platforms



Operating Systems


+ Common Consequences

Technical Impact: Read files or directories; Modify files or directories

+ Observed Examples
Multiple web servers allow restriction bypass using 8.3 names instead of long names
Source code disclosure using 8.3 file name.
Multi-Factor Vulnerability. Product generates temporary filenames using long filenames, which become predictable in 8.3 format.
+ Potential Mitigations

Phase: System Configuration

Disable Windows from supporting 8.3 filenames by editing the Windows registry. Preventing 8.3 filenames will not remove previously generated 8.3 filenames.

+ Relationships
NatureTypeIDNameView(s) this relationship pertains toView(s)
ChildOfWeakness BaseWeakness Base41Improper Resolution of Path Equivalence
Development Concepts (primary)699
Research Concepts (primary)1000
ChildOfCategoryCategory981SFP Secondary Cluster: Path Traversal
Software Fault Pattern (SFP) Clusters (primary)888
+ Research Gaps

Probably under-studied

+ Functional Areas
  • File processing
+ Taxonomy Mappings
Mapped Taxonomy NameNode IDFitMapped Node Name
PLOVERWindows 8.3 Filename
Software Fault PatternsSFP16Path Traversal
+ References
[REF-11] M. Howard and D. LeBlanc. "Writing Secure Code". 2nd Edition. Microsoft. 2003.
[REF-7] Mark Dowd, John McDonald and Justin Schuh. "The Art of Software Security Assessment". Chapter 11, "DOS 8.3 Filenames", Page 673.. 1st Edition. Addison Wesley. 2006.
+ Content History
Submission DateSubmitterOrganizationSource
PLOVERExternally Mined
Modification DateModifierOrganizationSource
2008-07-01Eric DalciCigitalExternal
updated Time_of_Introduction
2008-09-08CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Applicable_Platforms, Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
2008-10-14CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Description
2011-06-01CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Common_Consequences
2012-05-11CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated References, Relationships
2012-10-30CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Potential_Mitigations
2014-07-30CWE Content TeamMITREInternal
updated Relationships, Taxonomy_Mappings
Previous Entry Names
Change DatePrevious Entry Name
2008-04-11Path Issue - Windows 8.3 Filename

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Page Last Updated: May 05, 2017