Sun Microsystems Inc. released a patch that closed two security holes in its Solaris operating system Tuesday. The holes could have allowed an attacker to take control of vulnerable systems.

The vulnerabilities affect the snmpdx and mibiisa agents that are components of versions 2.6, 7 and 8 of the company’s Solaris operating system, according to an alert from Sun, in Palo Alto, California. The two affected agents both run with root privileges, the highest level of access on systems, and are part of the OS’s SNMP (Simple Network Management Protocol) capabilities. The capabilities allow for device configuration and administration. The snmpdx agent monitors SNMP requests and information from the system and forwards relevant information on to mibiisa, Sun said.

The vulnerabilities come in the form of a format string vulnerability in snmpdx and a buffer overflow in mibiisa, Sun said. Both vulnerabilties can be exploited locally and remotely, the company said.

The flaw is mitigated because the vulnerabilities only exist on systems running Sun Solstice Enterprise Master Agent, snmpdx and mibiisa, Sun added.

Patches for the affected operating systems are available at http://sunsolve.sun.com/securitypatch.

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