bug in Spear-Phishing script?

Julian Field MailScanner at ecs.soton.ac.uk
Fri Feb 27 16:31:42 GMT 2009

Hash: SHA1

On 27/2/09 15:05, Denis Beauchemin wrote:
> Julian Field a écrit :
>> On 27/2/09 13:20, David Lee wrote:
>>> Julian:  Several days ago I installed your spear-phishing 
>>> script/cronjob. But it has introduced a subtle and potentially nasty 
>>> side-effect, which I have just noticed this morning.
>>> In summary, it caused some of our outbound queued email to be 
>>> silently ignored and left, unreached, unattended and unprocessed, in 
>>> the queue. Not nice.
>>> A traditional sendmail installation (with or without MS) includes a 
>>> long-running outbound sendmail process, which periodically spawns a 
>>> child to work its way through the outbound queue and attempt to 
>>> deliver what it finds.  A major server may have a few hundred 
>>> outbound emails queued, and some of the attempted destinations may 
>>> be very slow, or involve a series of long timeouts.  So it may be a 
>>> considerable time before some emails in that queue are reached.  
>>> Nevertheless, in a traditional sendmail system, they will, 
>>> eventually, be reached and processed.
>>> But the spear-phishing script does a full restart of MailScanner, 
>>> including of that outbound queue processor, every hour.  So there is 
>>> considerable risk that some emails in the outbound queue may never 
>>> be reached at all, because that outbound processor will be killed 
>>> before those emails are ever reached.
>> If you're running a big system, why are you using the same machine(s) 
>> to deliver outbound mail as well as accept inbound mail? I split them 
>> into 2 separate jobs and use separate machines for each task. And you 
>> only need to do the phishing stuff on the inbound machines.
>>> (I'm still not clear why the script needs to restart the entire 
>>> email subsystem, including sendmail inbound/outbound, rather than 
>>> simply doing a "service MailScanner reload".)
>> Does a "reload" cause a re-compile of all the SpamAssassin rules? I 
>> don't think so. But a new "restartms" option would solve the problem, 
>> which just restarted MailScanner and didn't touch the sendmail 
>> processes. How about I add that to the init.d script?
>> A pair of new init.d scripts are attached, one for the RedHat 
>> distribution and the other for the SuSE distribution. I would be 
>> grateful if you could try them out to check that "service MailScanner 
>> restartms" does what it is supposed to.
>> Jules
> Julian,
> In the RH version (didn't check the SuSE one), you need to add ";;" on 
> line 451.
Yes, I missed it there too. Thanks for that.
> Denis
> PS: I am trying to configure a server that could (in case of DR) play 
> both inbound and outbound roles at the same time.  I will be running 
> different sendmail and MS instances.  I think the current init script 
> won't play nice with this scheme because it "killproc MailScanner" 
> without regards about which instance it might belong to. Why don't you 
> use $MSPID instead?
Err... because I started by copying someone else's init.d script! I 
ideally want to send the TERM to the child processes as well, though, so 
they all get told to start dying.


- -- 
Julian Field MEng CITP CEng
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