Wednesday, April 10, 2013

When to use strlcpy and strncpy (strlcat and strcat)

  • Found a large number of overflows due to unbounded string copies using sprintf(), strcpy() and strcat(), as well as loops that manipulated strings without an explicit length check in the loop invariant.
  • The most common misconception is that strncpy() NUL-terminates the destination string. This is only true, however, if length of the source string is less than the size parameter.  The safest way to use strncpy() in this situation is to pass it one less than the size of the destination string, and then terminate the string by hand.
  • Both strlcpy() and strlcat() guarantee to NUL-terminate the destination string for all strings where the given size is non-zero. 
  • Both functions take the full size of the destination string as a size parameter


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