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Old 03-22-2004, 04:04 PM   #1
hyper guy
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Registered: Feb 2004
Location: A State of Bliss (Ontario, Canada)
Distribution: Vector-Slackware + Dropline
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How safe/unsafe is Xvesa?


Installed Vector Linux, a Slackware-based distro especially useful for older machines (which is def what I have). Doesn't seem to run as fast as when I had Feather Linux, another light-enough-for-oldies distro. I'm guessing that one major reason for the difference in responsiveness is the fact that Vector uses XFree86 as its X server, while Feather gives a choice of either (but only) Xvesa or XFbdev, both supposedly very lightweight servers.

I would like to give Xvesa a try (I'll come back later for some tips on how I might go about doing that ), but I came across this warning, "Xvesa runs untrusted code with full privileges, and is therefore a fairly insecure X server. Run at your own risk. " which has given me reason for pause.

Is this server indeed much riskier to use than XFree86? If I have a firewall and/or separate router/gateway thingie will that afford me reasonable protection from the nefarious? Is there any not too tricky trick I can do to counter its security weaknesses?

Not like I'm super paranoid or anything, just trying to be careful and look before I leap/install...

Thanks
 
Old 03-22-2004, 09:37 PM   #2
hyper guy
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Registered: Feb 2004
Location: A State of Bliss (Ontario, Canada)
Distribution: Vector-Slackware + Dropline
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(bump...uh, anybody??)
 
Old 03-23-2004, 03:10 PM   #3
Mara
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Code running with full privileges is always potantially insecure. I recommend to install firewall on the machine you'll be running it and block all connection to the X server. Then, if you're the only user of the machine (or you don't store anything important) you'd be rather safe. Separate firewall would make you more secure from outside (but remember to check its configuration carefully), but you also need security in your local network (that's why I say to install firewall on that machine).
 
Old 03-24-2004, 08:57 AM   #4
hyper guy
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Registered: Feb 2004
Location: A State of Bliss (Ontario, Canada)
Distribution: Vector-Slackware + Dropline
Posts: 43

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Rep: Reputation: 15
Mara,

Thanks so much for your advice. I'll now start the research process to figure out how to go about doing all that, but at least I know there's some measure of safety in them thar firewalls.

Much appreciated!
 
  


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