Glenn C. Everhart

General Cybernetic Enterprises

Courtesy Links:

if looking for Granite City Electric go to

Granite City Electric website

To go to the site of the Groupe Caisse d'Epargne, click here:

GCE is the source for Safety, a security product for VMS which is
distributed on VMS SIG tapes. If your needs are for somewhat more
advanced capabilities contact us.

(The site is owned and operated by Glenn and Mary Everhart)

Here is the description for SAFETY

Software Product Description

Safety V1.4 

          Comprehensive Data Safety for your VMS systems.  

            from General Cybernetic Enterprises

  Executive Summary:

There are many perils your data faces, and loss of data can cost time, money, and jobs. Intruders, disgruntled insiders, or
 hidden flaws in installed software can destroy records. What is
 more, mistaken losses occur constantly.

Safety protects your system and your critical data in three ways:

1. A comprehensive security system adds extra checks for access
          to VMS files so that access by intruders or by people in
          non-job-required ways can be regulated or prevented. This allows
          your business - critical data to finally be protected against
          misuse, tampering, or abuse. Access from programs doing
          background dirty work (viruses, Trojans, worms, and the like, or
          even programs with security holes which can be exploited
          remotely (like Java browsers)) can also be blocked without
          damaging normal use. This active protection works three ways: by
          checking integrity    of your files against tampering, by
          preventing of  untrusted images from  gaining privilege, and by
          regulating what other parts of the system an image may access.

          2. A deletion protection system provides a way to undelete files
          which were deleted by mistake and to optionally copy deleted
          files to backup facilities before removal. Unlike all other VMS
          "undelete" programs on the market, this facility does not rely
          on finding the disk storage that contained the file and
          reclaiming it before it is overwritten. Rather, it changes the
          semantics of the file system delete to use a "wastebasket"
          system and captures the file intact. Thus, this system works
          reliably. No others do. This facility is also useful where you
          have a requirement to keep all files of a certain set of types,
          since the backup function can be used to capture such files
          while permitting otherwise normal system function. The shelving
          or linking functions are also available for moving copies
          offline if this is desired. The  Safety protection features are
          fully integrated with the DPS subsystem, so that deletion
          protection does not involve destroying file security.

          3.  When space runs out, hasty decisions about what to keep
          online often must be made, and the risk of accidentally losing
          something important is high.   Safety protects you from running
          out of space. Space can be monitored and older items in the
          wastebasket deleted if it is becoming low, without manual
          intervention. In addition, Safety  is able to "shelve" files so
          that they are stored anywhere else desired on your system, and
          they are brought back automatically when accessed. Thus no
          manual arrangements need be made for reloading them.  Safety can
          also keep the files on secondary storage, keeping a "soft link"
          to the files at their original site so they will be accessed on
          the secondary storage instead. Also,    Safety can store files
          compressed, or can store them on secondary storage so that read
          access is done on the secondary storage, but write access causes
          the file to be copied back to its original site. Standard VMS
          utilities are used for all file movement, and moved files are
          also directly accessible in their swapped sites with standard
          VMS utilities. The VMS file system remains completely valid at
          all times.

          Safety gives you a full complement of tools  for dealing with
          space issues automatically according to your site policy. These
          facilities are safe and easily understood.  A comprehensive
          utility is provided by which you set your site policy to select
          which files are and are not eligible for automatic shelving.
          Also you are provided with screen oritented utilities for
          selecting files to shelve at any time. Access to the shelved
          files of course causes unshelving if the normal shelving-by-copy
          mode is used. Also, a simple set of rules permit locating
          shelved or softlink target files at any time, even without
          Safety running.   Safety at no time invalidates your file
          structures for normal VMS access...not even for an instant.

          In addition Safety contains functions to speed file access and
          inhibit disk fragmentation.

          The major subsystems of Safety will now be described.

          The Security Function System:
          Managing access to data critical to your business using ACL
          facilities in native VMS can be cumbersome and still is
          vulnerable to intruders or people acting in excess of their

          Want to be sure your critical records can't be accessed save at
          authorized places, times, and with the programs that are
          supposed to access them (instead of, say, COPY.EXE)?

          Want to have protection against privileged users bypasssing
          access controls?   

          Want to be able to password protect individual files?

          Want to be able to invisibly hide selected files from
          unauthorized intruders?  

          Have you read that attacks on machines can happen because a scripting
          browser points at a web site that damages the system (as has
          been reported in the press)? Want to be able to protect your

          The Safety security subsystem builds in facilities permitting
          all of these, and is not vulnerable to intruders who disable the
          AUDIT facility as all other commercial packages which purport to
          monitor access are.

          Description: When your business depends on critical files, or
          when you are obliged by law or contract to maintain
          confidentiality of data on your system, in most cases the
          options provided by VMS for securing this data can be cumbersome
          and far too coarse-grained.

          The problem is that certain kinds of access to data are often
          needed by people in a shop, but other access should be prevented
          and audited. Moreover, the wide system access that can come as a
          result of having system privileges often does not mean that it
          should be used to browse or disclose data stored on the system.
          A system manager will in general not, for example, have any
          valid reason to browse the customer contact file, the payroll
          database, or a contract negotiation file, save in a few cases
          where these files need to be repaired or reloaded from backups.
          Likewise, a payroll clerk may need read and write access to the
          payroll file, but not in general with the COPY utility, nor from
          a modem, nor in most cases at 4AM. Finally, a person who must
          have privileges to design a driver and test it should ordinarily
          not have the run of the file system as well.

          Given examples like these, it is easy to see that simple
          authorization of user access to files is inadequate. While it is
          possible to build systems that grant identifiers to attempt some
          extra control, these can be circumvented by privilege, and
          create very long ACLs which become impossible to administer over
          a long period as users come and go.

          What is needed is a mechanism that is secure, cannot be
          circumvented by turning on privileges, and which provides a
          simple to administer and fine grained control that lets you
          specify who can get at your critical files, with what images,
          when, from where, and with what privileges. It is also desirable
          to be able to control what privileges the images ever see, and
          to be able to check critical command files or images for
          tampering before use, so that they cannot be used as back doors
          to your system. It should be possible to demand extra
          authentication for particular files as well, and to prevent a
          malicious user from even seeing a particularly critical file
          unless he can be permitted access.

          The Safety security subsystem is a VMS add-in security package
          which provides abilities to control security problems due to
          intruders, to damage or loss by system "insiders" (users
          exceeding their authority), and to covert code (worms and
          viruses). It provides a much easier management interface to
          handle security permissions than bare VMS and provides
          facilities permitting control over even privileged file
          accesses, for cases where there are privileged users whose
          access should be limited. Unlike systems which only intercept
          the AUDIT output, EACF can and does protect against ANY file
          accesses, and can protect files against deletion by unauthorized
          people or programs in real time as well as against access.

          The Safety security subsystem offers the following capabilities:

          * Files can be  password protected individually. If a file open
          or delete is attempted for such a file and no password has been
          entered, the open or delete fails.

          * Access can be controlled by time of day. Added protections can
          be in place only some of the time, access can be denied some
          times of day, write accesses can be denied at certain times, or
          various other modalities of access can be allowed.

          * You can control  who may access a file, where  they may be (or
          may not be),  with what images  they may or may not access the
          file, and with what privileges  the file may be accessed. Thus,
          for instance, it is trivial to allow a clerk access to the
          payroll file with the payroll programs, but    not with COPY or
          BACKUP, not on dialup lines, and not if they have unexpected
          privileges. The privilege checks can be helpful where there are
          consultants working on a system who should be denied access to
          sensitive corporate information but who need privileges to
          develop programs, or in similar circumstances. You specify what
          privileges are permitted for opening the file, and a process
          with excess privileges is prevented  from access. Vital business
          data access should not always be implied by someone having
          privilege. With this system you can be sure your proprietary
          plans or data stay in house, and are available only to those
          with business reasons to need them, not to everyone needing
          system privileges for unrelated reasons. Unlike packages using
          the VMS Audit facility's output (which can be silently turned
          off by public domain code),   Safety cannot  be circumvented by
          well known means. Its controls are designed to leave evidence of
          what was done with them as well.

          * You can specify that images (programs) able to run portable code (applet
      viewing programs or programs with powerful scripting languages)
      trigger a "paranoid mode" system. When this is triggered
      (normally when the "loading" image is active), all file opens
      by the process running the triggering image are filtered by a
      script. This script can be different for different programs,
      and is site customized. The furnished sample script will
      broadcast the identity of user and of files being opened. It is
      trivial to arrange to limit this to unusual files or filesystem
      areas.  The script can also veto the open. Thus the recommended
      way to treat web browsers is to limit their file access so they
      may read system areas and a scratch area, and may write only a
      scratch area. (The script is informed whether the open is for
      read or for write.) This "low-integrity-image" mode in which
      all file opens are checked with a site script which can report
      or veto access. This can be used to track or regulate what a
      Java applet can do, in case someone happens to browse a web
      site which exploits a Java hole to browse your system or damage

          * You can  hide files from unauthorized access. If someone not
          authorized to access a file tries to open it, they can be set to
          open instead some other file anywhere on the system. Meanwhile,
          Safety generates alarms and can execute site specific commands
          to react to the illegal access before it can happen. This can be
          helpful in gathering evidence of what a saboteur is up to
          without exposing real sensitive files to danger. Normal access
          goes through transparently.

          * You can arrange that opening a file  grants identifiers to the
          process that opens it and that closing it revokes these
          identifiers. Set an interpretive file to do this and set it to
          be openable only by the interpreter and you have a protected
          subsystem capability that works for 4GLs which are interpretive.
          (Safety identifier granting, privilege modification, and base
          priority alteration is protected by a cryptographic
          authenticator preventing forging or duplication.)

          * You can actively prevent covert code ( viruses and worms) from
          running in two ways. First,   Safety can attach a cryptographic
          checksum to a file such that the file will not open if it has
          been tampered with. Second,  Safety can attach a privilege mask
          to a file which will replace all privilege masks for the process
          that opens it. By setting such a mask to minimal privileges, you
          can ensure that an untrusted image will never see a very
          privileged environment, and thus will be unable to perform
          privilege-based intrusions into your system even if run from a
          privileged user's account.

          * You can  control base priority by image. Thus, a particularly
          CPU intensive image can be made to run at lower than normal base
          priority even if it is run interactively. 

          * You can run a site-chosen script to further refine selection
          criteria. (Some facilities for doing additional checking while
          an image runs exist also.)

          Safety  allows you to exempt certain images (e.g., disk
          defragmenters) from access checks, and it is possible to put a
          process into a temporary override mode also (leaving a record
          this was done) where this is needed.     Safety  facilities are
          controllable per disk, and impose generally negligible overhead.
          Safety  will work with any VMS file structure using the normal
          driver interfaces. Also,   Safety  marking information resides
          sufficiently in kernel space that it cannot be removed from
          lower access modes, yet it uses a limited amount of memory
          regardless of volume size. 

          Best of all, the Safety  protection is provided  within the file
          system  and does not depend on the audit facility. Thus it
          prevents file access or loss   before it happens, and does not
          have to react to it afterwards.      Safety allows all of its
          security provisions to be managed together in a simple
          screen-oriented display in which files, or groups of files, can
          be tagged with the desired security profiles or edited as
          desired.  Safety  protections are in addition to normal VMS file
          protections, which are left completely intact. Therefore, no
          existing security is broken or even altered. Safety  simply adds
          additional checking which finally provides a usable machine
          encoding of "need to know" for the files where it matters. 

          The Safety Deletion Protection Subsystem. 

          Description: The Safety  Deletion Protection System is designed
          to provide protection against accidental deletion of file types
          chosen by the site, and to allow files to be routed by the
          system to backup media before they are finally removed from the
          system. This is accomplished by an add-in to the VMS file system
          so that security holes are not introduced by the system's

          The user interface is an  UNDELETE command which permits one or
          more files to be restored to their original locations provided
          it is issued within the site-chosen time window after the
          undesired deletion took place. In addition, an   EXPUNGE command
          is provided which allows files to be deleted at once,
          irretrievably, where space for such is required. Provision for
          automatic safe-storing of files prior to final deletion is
          present also in Safety DPS. 

          Safety DPS is implemented as a VMS file system add-in which
          functions by intercepting the DELETE operation and allowing the
          file to be deleted to be copied or renamed to a "wastebasket"
          holding area pending final action, and to be disposed of by a
          disposal agent. The supplied agent will allow a site script to
          save the files if this is desired, and then finally deletes any
          files which have been deleted more than some number N seconds
          ago. If the UNDELETE command is given, the file(s) undeleted are
          replaced in their original sites. The supplied system can also
          be configured to rename files to a wastebasket area or to copy
          them directly, for undeletion by systems people only. (These
          options are faster than the site command file option.)  

          Safety DPS can be configured to omit certain file types from
          deletion protection (for example, *.LIS* or *.MAP* could be
          omitted), to include only certain files in the protected sets,
          or both. This can reduce the overhead of saving files which are
          likely to be easily recreated, or tailor the system for such
          actions as saving all mail files (by selecting *.MAI for

          In addition, Safety DPS monitors free space on disks, and when a
          file create or extend would cause space exhaustion,   Safety DPS
          runs a site script. By setting this script to perform final
          deletions, Safety DPS can be run in a purely automatic mode in
          which deleted files are saved as long as possible, but never
          less than some minimum period (e.g., 5 or 10 minutes).

          Safety DPS files can be stored in any location accessible to
          VMS. If they are renamed, they must reside on the same disk they
          came from. Otherwise they can be stored in any desired place.

          Safety DPS is installed and configured using a screen oriented
          configuration utility to set it up, and basically runs
          unattended once installed.

          The Safety Storage Migration Subsystem


          Safety has the ability to move files to secondary storage and
          automatically retrieve them when they are accessed. This backing
          can be similar to what HSM systems call "shelving", though it
          can be done in multiple levels, or it can be done in a way which
          permits files moved to secondary storage to be accessed there as
          though the files remained online. This resembles what are called
          "soft links" in Unix systems, in that file opens are
          transparently redirected to a file stored somewhere else
          reachable on the system, and the channel reset to the original
          device on close. A "readonly link" mode acts like a soft link
          for readonly access, and like an unshelve operation where a file
          is opened read/write, should this be desired. Full control over
          this shelving and unshelving is provided.

          This provides a great deal of flexibility in reclaiming space
          when the Safety space monitoring function detects that space is
          needed. Not only can previously deleted files be finally moved
          to backup destinations and deleted, but the system can migrate
          seldom accessed files to nearline storage transparently. The
          site policy can drive this, or utilities provided can be used

          Where it is chosen to run  Safety in a lights-out fashion (with
          Safety reacting to low disk situations by emptying older deleted
          files from the wastebasket and/or file migration to backing
          store), the policy chosen for controlling such setting is
          handled by a full-screen, easily used, tool which sets the
          policy. Should still greater flexibility be needed, the scripts
          used for a number of operations are supplied together with a
          full description of the command line interface of the underlying
          software. This facilitates linking      Safety file management
          functions with other packages should such be desired. 

          Safety can be run in a mode where there is essentially no
          overhead at all imposed (just a few instructions added along
          some paths and no disk access) for any files except those which
          need softlinks or possible unshelving. There is no limit to how
          many files may be so marked on a disk. A fullscreen setup script
          allows one to select the   Safety run modes. Even if   Safety is
          forced to examine all files for its markings, the overhead
          imposes no added disk access and costs only a tiny added time
          (typically a percent or two) in open intensive applications. In
          addition, Safety can be turned off or back on at any convenient
          point should this be desired. (This must be done using special
          tools provided for use by those specially authorized to do so.)


         Safety runs on VAX VMS 5.5 or greater or AXP VMS 6.1 or greater.
          The same facilities exist across all systems. HSM must be
          installed on each cluster node of a VMScluster where it is to be
          used but imposes no restrictions on types of disk it works for.
          Safety will work with any file structure used by VMS, so long as
          a disk class device is used to hold it. It is specifically NOT
          limited to use with ODS-2 disks.

          Safety  is brought to you by 

          General Cybernetic Enterprises
          Glenn C. Everhart
          156 Clark Farm Road
          Smyrna, Delaware 19977
          302 659 0460 voice
          302 659 5870 fax 


Mail for further questions
Authentication whitepaper (spreadsheet and relational DBMS for many systems with full src.) AnalyRim for Linux, compiles with Gnu F77 (includes src)
Paper about ideas for a more complete authentication system
Paper abut reasons for fraud and considerations for fixing it
Paper about a way to authenticate in presence of malware

Slight rework of old texto steganography for 64 bit linux. Some issues but basic function works. Encodes info as mad-lib sentences so to automata it looks like plain text.

Method to detect MITM after setup of a Diffie Hellman exchange