Become a “nobody” user on a web server. The simviz1.py.cgi (or simviz1w.py.cgi) script from Chapter.

Become a “nobody” user on a web server.

The simviz1.py.cgi (or simviz1w.py.cgi) script from Chapter
7.2 generates a new directory with several new files. The owner of these files
is often named www or nobody. Hence, you cannot remove these files from your
directory unless this www or nobody user has set the right access permissions,
i.e., permissions for anyone to delete files. We did this inside the
simviz1.py.cgi script, but what if you forget to do it and want to clean up the
directory?

When you run a CGI script, you become the www or nobody
user. Therefore, if you create a CGI script
»

Become a “nobody” user on a web server.

The simviz1.py.cgi (or simviz1w.py.cgi) script from Chapter
7.2 generates a new directory with several new files. The owner of these files
is often named www or nobody. Hence, you cannot remove these files from your
directory unless this www or nobody user has set the right access permissions,
i.e., permissions for anyone to delete files. We did this inside the
simviz1.py.cgi script, but what if you forget to do it and want to clean up the
directory?

When you run a CGI script, you become the www or nobody
user. Therefore, if you create a CGI script that asks for semi-colon-separated
Unix commands, runs the commands, and writes the output of the commands, you
can act as a www or nobody user. This allows you to run an rm command to clean
up files. Make such a script. Test it first with the command touch somefile.
Then run ls -l to check that the file was created. Also check the owner of the
file. Thereafter, run rm somefile, followed by ls -l to check that the file is
removed.

Note that such a script must be carefully protected from
misuse, since it represents a serious and very easy-to-use security hole on
your computer system.

»

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