XaoS, a program for displaying fractal images, is installed setuid root on certain architectures in order to use svgalib, which requires access to the video hardware. However, it is not designed for secure setuid execution, and can be exploited to gain root privileges.
In these updated packages, the setuid bit has been removed from the xaos binary. Users who require the svgalib functionality should grant these privileges only to a trusted group.
This vulnerability is exploitable in version 3.0-18 (potato) on i386 and alpha architectures, and in version 3.0-23 (woody) on the i386 architecture only.
For the stable distribution (woody) this problem has been fixed in version 3.0-23woody1.
For the old stable distribution (potato) this problem has been fixed in version 3.0-18potato1.
For the unstable distribution (sid) this problem has been fixed in version 3.1r-4.
We recommend that you update your xaos package.
MD5 checksums of the listed files are available in the original advisory.