Check If Your Linux System Is Vulnerable To Shellshock And Fix It

How to check if your Linux is impacted with Shellshock bash bug

Quick tutorial to show you how to check if your Linux system is impacted with Shellshock and if yes, how to fix the system for Bash Bug exploit.

If you are following news, you might have heard about a vulnerability found in Bash, which is known as Bash Bug or Shellshock. Red Hat was the first to discover this vulnerability. This Shellshock bug allows attackers to inject their own code and thus leaves the system open to various malicious and remote attacks. In fact, hackers are already exploiting it to launch DDoS attacks.

Since Bash is found on all Unix-like system, it leaves all Linux systems vulnerable to this Shellshock bug if those are running a specific version of Bash.

Wondering if your Linux system has been impacted by Shellshock? There is an easy way to check it, which we are about to see.

Check Linux system for Shellshock vulnerability

Open a terminal and run the following command in it:

env x='() { :;}; echo vulnerable' bash -c 'echo hello'

If your system is NOT vulnerable, you will see an output like this:

bash: warning: x: ignoring function definition attempt
bash: error importing function definition for `x’

If your system is vulnerable to Shellshock bug, you’ll see an output like this:


I tried it on my Ubuntu 14.10 and here is what I got:

Check Linux for Shellshock vulnerability

You can also check the bash version in use by using the command below:

bash --version

If the bash version in use isΒ 3.2.51(1), you should update it.

Patch Linux system for Shellshock vulnerability

If you are running a Debian based Linux OS such as Ubuntu, Linux Mint etc, use the following command to upgrade Bash:

sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install --only-upgrade bash

For Linux OS like Fedora, Red Hat, Cent OS etc, use the following command:

yum -y update bash

I hope this quick tip helps you to see if you are impacted with Shellshock bug and also to fix it. Questions and suggestions are always welcomed.

About the author
Abhishek Prakash

Abhishek Prakash

Created It's FOSS 11 years ago to share my Linux adventures. Have a Master's degree in Engineering and years of IT industry experience. Huge fan of Agatha Christie detective mysteries πŸ•΅οΈβ€β™‚οΈ

Become a Better Linux User

With the FOSS Weekly Newsletter, you learn useful Linux tips, discover applications, explore new distros and stay updated with the latest from Linux world


Great! You’ve successfully signed up.

Welcome back! You've successfully signed in.

You've successfully subscribed to It's FOSS.

Success! Check your email for magic link to sign-in.

Success! Your billing info has been updated.

Your billing was not updated.