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RealNetworks RealPlayer RVRENDER Heap Buffer Overflow Vulnerability



RealPlayer is RealNetworks's media player product used to render video and other media. For more information, visit:


Remote exploitation of a heap buffer overflow vulnerability in RealNetworks Inc.'s RealPlayer media player could allow attackers to execute arbitrary code in the context of the targeted user.

The vulnerability is due to the way RealPlayer handles specially crafted RealMedia files using the RealVideo Renderer plugin. A short value is read directly from a .ram media file. This value is used to calculate a length value which is passed to a memory copy operation as the size parameter. This can cause the memory copy operation to overflow the bounds of a fixed-sized heap buffer. This condition may lead to arbitrary code execution.


Successful exploitation could allow attackers to execute arbitrary code in the context of the currently logged-on user. To exploit this vulnerability, an attacker must persuade a victim into using RealPlayer to open a specially crafted media file. This could be accomplished by either direct link or referenced from a website under the attacker's control. An attacker could host a Web page containing a malformed file. Upon visiting the malicious Web page, exploitation would occur and execution of arbitrary code would be possible. Alternatively a malicious media file could be attached within an e-mail file.


The following versions of RealPlayer are vulnerable:

  • RealPlayer 11.0 - 11.1
  • RealPlayer SP 1.0 - 1.1.5
  • RealPlayer 14.0.0 - 14.0.7


iDefense is currently unaware of any workaround for this issue.


RealNetworks has released patches and workarounds to address this vulnerability. For more information, consult their advisory at the following URL.


The Common Vulnerabilities and Exposures (CVE) project has assigned the name CVE-2011-4244 to this issue. This is a candidate for inclusion in the CVE list (, which standardizes names for security problems.


06/15/2011 Initial Vendor Notification
06/15/2011 Initial Vendor Reply
11/18/2011 Coordinated Public Disclosure


This vulnerability was reported to iDefense by Omair.

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Copyright © 2011 Verisign, Inc.

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