Apache CouchDB CVE-2018-17188: Remote Privilege Escalations

Date: 17.12.2018
Affected: All Versions of Apache CouchDB
Severity: Medium
Vendor: The Apache Software Foundation


Prior to CouchDB version 2.3.0, CouchDB allowed for runtime-configuration of key components of the database. In some cases, this lead to vulnerabilities where CouchDB admin users could access the underlying operating system as the CouchDB user. Together with other vulnerabilities, it allowed full system entry for unauthenticated users.

These vulnerabilities were fixed and disclosed in the following CVE reports:

Rather than waiting for new vulnerabilities to be discovered, and fixing them as they come up, the CouchDB development team decided to make changes to avoid this entire class of vulnerabilities.

With CouchDB version 2.3.0, CouchDB no longer can configure key components at runtime. While some flexibility is needed for speciality configurations of CouchDB, the configuration was changed from being available at runtime to start-up time. And as such now requires shell access to the CouchDB server.

This closes all future paths for vulnerabilities of this type.


All users should upgrade to CouchDB 2.3.0.

Upgrades from previous 2.x versions in the same series should be seamless.

Users on earlier versions should consult with upgrade notes.


This issue was discovered by the Apple Information Security team.

One thought on “Apache CouchDB CVE-2018-17188: Remote Privilege Escalations

  1. 2.3.0 – CouchDB Blog

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s