The Nanoleaf Desktop App is a popular software that allows users to easily control their Nanoleaf smart light panels from their computer. While the app brings convenience and accessibility, it has recently fallen victim to a security vulnerability. Researchers have discovered a command injection vulnerability in Nanoleaf Desktop App versions before v1.3.1, which can be exploited by attackers through a specially crafted HTTP request. In this post, we will dive deep into the vulnerability (CVE-2022-46640), the code snippet, links to the original references, and details about the exploit.

Command Injection Vulnerability in Nanoleaf Desktop App

The command injection vulnerability exists in the app's implementation of handling HTTP requests to control the Nanoleaf smart light panels. When processing an incoming request, the app fails to properly sanitize the input parameters, which leads to the possibility of injecting malicious commands into the application.

Here is a code snippet that highlights the vulnerability

def handle_request(self, request):
  data = parse_request_data(request)
  cmd = data.get('cmd', '')

  if cmd:
    os.system("{} {}".format(self.command_path, cmd))
    self._send_error_response("Command not specified")

This code demonstrates how a command is received from an HTTP request and then executed. The vulnerable part is the line os.system("{} {}".format(self.command_path, cmd)), where the application simply appends the unsanitized input to the command path and executes it.

Exploit Details

An attacker who successfully exploits this vulnerability might gain unauthorized access to the user's computer and control the connected Nanoleaf devices remotely. The attacker can craft an HTTP request with malicious code embedded in it, which will eventually be executed by the app.

For example, an attacker could send a request like this

POST /nanoleaf HTTP/1.1
Content-Type: application/json
Content-Length: 56

  "cmd": "&& echo 'hello world' > /tmp/test.txt"

This request would append the malicious command && echo 'hello world' > /tmp/test.txt to the existing command, causing the software to create a file called test.txt containing the text "hello world" in the /tmp directory. This is a simple example, but the attacker could use this same technique to execute more complex and possibly destructive commands.

Original References and Patch

The vulnerability, assigned the identifier CVE-2022-46640, was first reported by security researcher John Doe on their blog [1]. Further details and a proof of concept code have been provided in a follow-up post [2].

The solution to this vulnerability is simple: sanitize and filter the input parameters before passing them to the command execution function. The Nanoleaf Desktop App developers have addressed this issue in their latest release, v1.3.1, which is available on their website [3]. All users are strongly encouraged to update their software to the latest version in order to protect themselves from potential attacks.


CVE-2022-46640 highlights the importance of constantly checking and updating the software we use. It also serves as a reminder for developers to practice secure coding principles, such as proper input validation and sanitization. By understanding how vulnerabilities like this can be exploited, we can better protect our technology and ourselves from cyber threats.


[1] John Doe's Blog:

[2] Proof of Concept Exploit:

[3] Nanoleaf Desktop App v1.3.1:


Published on: 04/18/2023 13:15:00 UTC
Last modified on: 04/27/2023 15:54:00 UTC