[standards-jig] JEP-0060 PubSub: Denial of Service weakness in error handling...

Peter Millard me at pgmillard.com
Fri Mar 21 23:03:14 UTC 2003


Bob Wyman wrote:
> While "success" messages in JEP-0060 are often very short and
> succinct it appears that when errors occur, the server must copy
> much of the message held to be in error and return it as part of
> the error message. This makes DOS attacks relatively easy to launch.

Jabber as a system has always followed this convention :) That said, however,
most client connection managers typically rate limit connections which prevents
clients from ever sending in packets which can not be handled by the server
implementation. These rate limits also typically enforce "hard-coded" XML node
size limitations which exist in most servers. If someone attempts to publish a
node which is several megabytes, almost all systems will interupt this as start
rate limiting the actual socket, or just disconnect the socket.

The primary reason for doing errors the way we do is just because "thats the way
we've always done it"... If others feel that this is a problem, I can certainly
change the draft, so that the original request is not echoed during error
conditions. What do others think about this???

pgm.




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