Looking for remote file view utility

Robert G. Brown rgb at phy.duke.edu
Wed Jan 8 09:13:12 PST 2003

On Wed, 8 Jan 2003 mgb at mgbeckett.com wrote:

> I saw a simple C program which ran as a server on each
> cluster node and allow a remote user to telnet to a
> port and cat a file or list files in a directory.
> I Thought it was on the list but I cannot find it 

I presume that you know that such a utility is Evil with the capital E.
Most sysadmins would stake you to an anthill if they discovered such a
daemon running on their system, especially a homemade one that is
probably chock full of buffer-overwrite attack possibilities.

HOWEVER, there are plenty of programs that do this.  Probably the
simplest (and least secure) one is tftpd, although ftpd or httpd would
both work if appropriately configured.  Yes, you can telnet directly to
port 80 on a webserver or port 21 on an ftp server and do all sorts of
stuff like this with a moderate knowledge of

The big question is:  Why telnet?  Why any of the ftpd/httpd's?  What is
wrong with just running something at least approximately secure like
sshd and entering your remote commands as (e.g.)

  ssh filehost ls -alF /path/to/files
  ssh filehost cat /path/to/files/thisfile


  scp filehost:/path/to/files/thisfile .

This is at least modestly secure, provides something approximating
access control, and of course enables all sorts of OTHER work to be done
that e.g. tftp does not.


>     thank you
>     Martin Beckett
> _______________________________________________
> Beowulf mailing list, Beowulf at beowulf.org
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Robert G. Brown	                       http://www.phy.duke.edu/~rgb/
Duke University Dept. of Physics, Box 90305
Durham, N.C. 27708-0305
Phone: 1-919-660-2567  Fax: 919-660-2525     email:rgb at phy.duke.edu

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