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Slammer - Not Just for Microsoft SQL Server 2000

  • February 4, 2003
  • By Bradley L. Jones
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Many developers may not realize that they are vulnerable to the Slammer Worm that has hit Microsoft SQL Server 2000. While you might not have Microsoft SQL Server 2000 on your machine, there is a likelihood that if you use a lot of Microsoft products that you could be using the Microsoft SQL Data Engine (MSDE).

There is a large list of products that use MSDE available on Microsoft's site at:

http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/MSDEapps.asp

This list includes products such as (this is not the complete list)

  • .NET Framework SDK
  • ASP.NET Web Matrix
  • Office XP Premium, Professional, Developer
  • Project Server 2002
  • SQL Server 2000, Enterprise Edition, Developer Edition, Personal Edition (RTM, SP1, SP2)
  • Visio Enterprise Network Tools
  • Visual FoxPro(r) 7.0 and 8.0 beta
  • Visual Studio .NET 2002 Professional, Enterprise Developer, and Enterprise Architect Editions
  • Visual Basic .NET Standard 2002 , Visual C++ .NET Standard 2002 , Visual C# .NET
  • Standard 2002
  • Windows Enterprise Server 2003 RC1, only if UDDI is enabled
  • Windows Server 2003 RC1, only if UDDI is enabled
  • Microsoft Class Server 2.0
  • Windows XP Embedded Tools
If you are using any of these programs, then you may be at risk for Slammer. The best thing to do is to simply check to see if your machine is running any instances of either SQL Server or MSDE. In Windows NT or XP, you can do a quick check in the Computer Management dialog.

To access this dialog, you can right click on the My Computer icon and then select Manage. Once in the Computer Management dialog, you will want to check the services that are running. Select "Services," which is grouped within Services and Applications. You'll be presented with a list of services on the right side of the dialog. If you find a service in this list called MSSQLxxxxx (where xxxxx can be anything), then you may be running a copy of MSDE. In this case, you will want to make sure your system is protected from Slammer. Note that the default instance of MSDE should be called MSSQLSERVER. Additional instances should start with MSSQL$.

If you find these files in your services, then you should make sure you have the latest updates on your machine. There are different updates recommended by Microsoft depending on what products you are running. For information on what you should update, I recommend going to the Microsoft site. The following URL links to a page that provides much more information:

http://www.microsoft.com/security/slammer.asp

Editor's Note:
A list of applications that may use Microsoft SQL Server 2000 or MSDE 2000can be found here. Note that the site at this link is unaffiliated withDeveloper.com.






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