diff options
authorJohannes Schindelin <>2019-09-09 19:04:41 (GMT)
committerJohannes Schindelin <>2019-12-05 14:36:51 (GMT)
commit9102f958ee5254b10c0be72672aa3305bf4f4704 (patch)
parent3a85dc7d534fc2d410ddc0c771c963b20d1b4857 (diff)
protect_ntfs: turn on NTFS protection by default
Back in the DOS days, in the FAT file system, file names always consisted of a base name of length 8 plus a file extension of length 3. Shorter file names were simply padded with spaces to the full 8.3 format. Later, the FAT file system was taught to support _also_ longer names, with an 8.3 "short name" as primary file name. While at it, the same facility allowed formerly illegal file names, such as `.git` (empty base names were not allowed), which would have the "short name" `git~1` associated with it. For backwards-compatibility, NTFS supports alternative 8.3 short filenames, too, even if starting with Windows Vista, they are only generated on the system drive by default. We addressed the problem that the `.git/` directory can _also_ be accessed via `git~1/` (when short names are enabled) in 2b4c6efc821 (read-cache: optionally disallow NTFS .git variants, 2014-12-16), i.e. since Git v1.9.5, by introducing the config setting `core.protectNTFS` and enabling it by default on Windows. In the meantime, Windows 10 introduced the "Windows Subsystem for Linux" (short: WSL), i.e. a way to run Linux applications/distributions in a thinly-isolated subsystem on Windows (giving rise to many a "2016 is the Year of Linux on the Desktop" jokes). WSL is getting increasingly popular, also due to the painless way Linux application can operate directly ("natively") on files on Windows' file system: the Windows drives are mounted automatically (e.g. `C:` as `/mnt/c/`). Taken together, this means that we now have to enable the safe-guards of Git v1.9.5 also in WSL: it is possible to access a `.git` directory inside `/mnt/c/` via the 8.3 name `git~1` (unless short name generation was disabled manually). Since regular Linux distributions run in WSL, this means we have to enable `core.protectNTFS` at least on Linux, too. To enable Services for Macintosh in Windows NT to store so-called resource forks, NTFS introduced "Alternate Data Streams". Essentially, these constitute additional metadata that are connected to (and copied with) their associated files, and they are accessed via pseudo file names of the form `filename:<stream-name>:<stream-type>`. In a recent patch, we extended `core.protectNTFS` to also protect against accesses via NTFS Alternate Data Streams, e.g. to prevent contents of the `.git/` directory to be "tracked" via yet another alternative file name. While it is not possible (at least by default) to access files via NTFS Alternate Data Streams from within WSL, the defaults on macOS when mounting network shares via SMB _do_ allow accessing files and directories in that way. Therefore, we need to enable `core.protectNTFS` on macOS by default, too, and really, on any Operating System that can mount network shares via SMB/CIFS. A couple of approaches were considered for fixing this: 1. We could perform a dynamic NTFS check similar to the `core.symlinks` check in `init`/`clone`: instead of trying to create a symbolic link in the `.git/` directory, we could create a test file and try to access `.git/config` via 8.3 name and/or Alternate Data Stream. 2. We could simply "flip the switch" on `core.protectNTFS`, to make it "on by default". The obvious downside of 1. is that it won't protect worktrees that were clone with a vulnerable Git version already. We considered patching code paths that check out files to check whether we're running on an NTFS system dynamically and persist the result in the repository-local config setting `core.protectNTFS`, but in the end decided that this solution would be too fragile, and too involved. The obvious downside of 2. is that everybody will have to "suffer" the performance penalty incurred from calling `is_ntfs_dotgit()` on every path, even in setups where. After the recent work to accelerate `is_ntfs_dotgit()` in most cases, it looks as if the time spent on validating ten million random file names increases only negligibly (less than 20ms, well within the standard deviation of ~50ms). Therefore the benefits outweigh the cost. Another downside of this is that paths that might have been acceptable previously now will be forbidden. Realistically, though, this is an improvement because public Git hosters already would reject any `git push` that contains such file names. Note: There might be a similar problem mounting HFS+ on Linux. However, this scenario has been considered unlikely and in light of the cost (in the aforementioned benchmark, `core.protectHFS = true` increased the time from ~440ms to ~610ms), it was decided _not_ to touch the default of `core.protectHFS`. This change addresses CVE-2019-1353. Reported-by: Nicolas Joly <> Helped-by: Garima Singh <> Signed-off-by: Johannes Schindelin <>
2 files changed, 1 insertions, 3 deletions
diff --git a/config.mak.uname b/config.mak.uname
index 6604b13..333bd39 100644
--- a/config.mak.uname
+++ b/config.mak.uname
@@ -379,7 +379,6 @@ ifeq ($(uname_S),Windows)
EXTLIBS = user32.lib advapi32.lib shell32.lib wininet.lib ws2_32.lib invalidcontinue.obj
lib =
ifndef DEBUG
@@ -516,7 +515,6 @@ ifneq (,$(findstring MINGW,$(uname_S)))
COMPAT_OBJS += compat/mingw.o compat/winansi.o \
compat/win32/pthread.o compat/win32/syslog.o \
EXTLIBS += -lws2_32
GITLIBS += git.res
diff --git a/environment.c b/environment.c
index 3fd4b10..ab38dee 100644
--- a/environment.c
+++ b/environment.c
@@ -73,7 +73,7 @@ enum log_refs_config log_all_ref_updates = LOG_REFS_UNSET;
int protect_hfs = PROTECT_HFS_DEFAULT;
int protect_ntfs = PROTECT_NTFS_DEFAULT;