Linux Basics

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 1 (Getting Started)

Welcome back, my hacker trainees! A number of you have written me regarding which operating system is best for hacking. I'll start by saying that nearly every professional and expert hacker uses Linux or Unix. Although some hacks can be done with Windows and Mac OS, nearly all of the hacking tools are developed specifically for Linux. There are some exceptions, though, including software like Cain and Abel, Havij, Zenmap, and Metasploit that are developed or ported for Windows.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 2 (Creating Directories & Files)

In my first tutorial on Linux basics, I discussed the importance of hackers using Linux and the structure of the directory system. We also looked briefly at the cd command. In this second Linux guide, I'll spend a bit more time with changing directories, listing directories, creating files and directories, and finally, getting help. Let's open up BackTrack and getting started learning more Linux for the aspiring hacker.

How To: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker: Using Ship for Quick & Handy IP Address Information

Whether you're white hat, black hat, or some shade in-between, navigating through a network is a core part of hacking. To do that, we need to be able to explore a network to discover the addresses of gateways, interfaces, and other attached devices. When ifconfig just isn't enough, you can steer your way around a network with a convenient tool called Ship, the script for everything IP.

How To: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker: Configuring Apache

Welcome back, my hacker novitiates! In an earlier Linux Basics tutorial, I had demonstrated the basics of the Apache web server. Since Apache is the world's most widely used web server on the Internet (as of July 2015, Apache was 38%, IIS was 26%, and Nginx is 15%), the more you know about it and understand it, the more success you are likely to have hacking it.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 10 (Manipulating Text)

Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! As mentioned several times in previous Linux tutorials, nearly everything in Linux is a file, and very often they are text files. For instance, all of the configuration files in Linux are text files. To reconfigure an application in Linux, we simply need to open the configuration file, change the text file, re-save, and then restart the application and our reconfiguration is applied.

How To: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker: Managing Hard Drives

Managing hard drives in Linux is crucial to understanding your system and its operation as well as understanding the system you are exploiting or conducting a forensic analysis on. Linux has numerous commands that can provide us with information, control, and management of hard drives, and in this tutorial, we will examine a number of the most important ones.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 22 (Samba)

Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! Those of you who use Windows in a LAN environment understand that Windows machines can share directories, files, printers, etc. using "shares." This protocol dates back to the 1980s when the then dominant computer firm, IBM, developed a way for computers to communicate over the LAN by just using computer names rather than MAC or IP addresses.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 12 (Loadable Kernel Modules)

Welcome back, my budding hackers! In my continuing series on Linux basics for aspiring hackers, I now want to address Loadable kernel modules (LKMs), which are key to the Linux administrator because they provide us the capability to add functionality to the kernel without having to recompile the kernel. Things like video and other device drivers can now be added to the kernel without shutting down the system, recompiling, and rebooting.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 21 (GRUB Bootloader)

Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! Many of you have installed Kali Linux as a virtual machine (VM) using VMware or VirtualBox, while others have installed Kali (or BackTrack) in a dual-boot system. The drawback to installing these hacking systems as a VM is that it then requires an external wireless adapter (your wireless adapter is piped through the VM as a wired device, eth0), but it makes for a great place to test your hacks while honing your skills.

Hack Like a Pro: Linux Basics for the Aspiring Hacker, Part 13 (Mounting Drives & Devices)

Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! One of those areas of Linux that Windows users invariably struggle with is the concept of "mounting" devices and drives. In the Windows world, drives and devices are automatically "mounted" without any user effort or knowledge. Well, maybe a bit of knowledge. Most Windows users know to unmount their flash drive before removing it, but they usually think of it as "ejecting" it.

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