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.
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers!
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! Although this article may have been better placed first in this series, I doubt that anyone would have read it when just starting out studying Linux. Now, that you are well into your Linux studies and have some familiarity with how it operates, I'd like to take this moment to explain the philosophy around the Linux operating system.
Welcome back, my hacker wannabees!
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.
Welcome, my neophyte hackers!
How To: Exploring Kali Linux Alternatives: Set Up the Ultimate Beginner Arch Linux Hacking Distro with Manjaro & BlackArch
There's no doubt Kali has established itself as the most popular penetration distribution available. However, just because it's the fan favorite of beginners and security researchers doesn't make it right for everyone. Manjaro Linux is a beginner-friendly Arch-based distribution which can be easily weaponized with the Black Arch expansion, creating a friendlier first-time Arch experience.
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! In recent tutorials, I have made reference to the name and location of the Linux devices in the file system, such as sda (first SATA or SCSI drive). Specifically, I have mentioned the way that Linux designates hard drives when making an image of a hard drive for forensic purposes.
Welcome back, my budding hackers! I began this series on Linux basics because several of you have expressed befuddlement at working with BackTrack on Linux. As a hacker, there is no substitute for Linux skills.
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.
Welcome back, my rookie hackers! In my ongoing attempts to familiarize aspiring hackers with Linux (nearly all hacking is done with Linux, and here's why every hacker should know and use it), I want to address a rather obscure, but powerful process. There is one super process that is called inetd or xinetd or rlinetd. I know, I know... that's confusing, but bear with me.
Welcome back, my greenhorn hackers!
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.
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.
Welcome back, my budding hackers! In previous tutorials, we've looked at some of the basic commands and concepts for using Linux. Along the way, I realized that I've failed to provide you with some basic background material on the stdin, stdout, and stderror.
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.
Welcome back, my tenderfoot hackers! This is the third installment of my series on basic Linux skills that every hacker should know. Although some hacking tools are available for Windows and Mac, every real hacker uses Linux—for good reason.
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.
Welcome back, my amateur hackers! When you are using and administering Linux, it is important to be conversant in the use of the log files. As you know, log files are the repository for much information about our system, including errors and security alerts.
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers!
Welcome back, my novice hackers!
Welcome back, my greenhorn hackers! I've been writing these Linux tutorials in an attempt to fill the void in the education of some aspiring hackers into the Linux operating system. There is a lot to know, and in this tutorial, we'll look at Linux file permissions. Step 1: Checking Permissions
Welcome back, my budding hackers! In my continuing effort to build your basic Linux skills for hacking, I want to show you how to build a secure "tunnel" to MySQL.
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers!
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! In previous tutorials, I have shown you how to scan the globe for vulnerable servers and write simple scripts in BASH and Perl to perform other reconnaissance tasks. In a very recent guide, I taught how to scan vulnerable servers for Heartbleed.
Welcome back, my aspiring hackers! Domain Name System (DNS) is one of those things we seldom think about unless it doesn't work. Then, it can be very frustrating when we attempt to navigate to a website and we get that frustrating error message.
Very often we have processes in Linux that we want to always run in the background at startup. These would be processes that we need to start at bootup and always be available to us.
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.
When using Linux, we often need to install new software, a script, or numerous large files. To make things easier on us, these files are usually compressed and combined together into a single file with a .tar extension, which makes them easier to download, since it's one smaller file.
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.
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.
Formerly ipchains, iptables is a script-based firewall that's included with both Mac and Linux operating systems. In my opinion, it's the best firewall in existence. The only downfall is that it's complicated for some people to use due to its script-based nature. But this should be disregarded, as firewalls are nearly the entire security of your computer.
Welcome back, my nascent hackers! We have spent a lot of time in previous tutorials focused on hacking the ubiquitous Windows systems, but the vast majority of "heavy iron" around the world are Linux or Unix systems. Linux and Unix dominate the world of Internet web servers with over 60% of the market. In addition, Linux and Unix servers are the operating system of choice for major international corporations (including almost all the major banks) throughout the world.
The Raspberry Pi is a credit card-sized computer that can crack Wi-Fi, clone key cards, break into laptops, and even clone an existing Wi-Fi network to trick users into connecting to the Pi instead. It can jam Wi-Fi for blocks, track cell phones, listen in on police scanners, broadcast an FM radio signal, and apparently even fly a goddamn missile into a helicopter.
Welcome back, my eager hackers! In recent blogs, I've demonstrated how to grab password hashes remotely using Metasploit's meterpreter and pwdump. Once we have the Windows passwords from the SAM file, we can then crack these hashes using tools such as Cain and Abel.
Welcome back, my budding hackers! Metasploit, one of my favorite hacking/pentesting tools, has so many capabilities that even after my many tutorials on it, I have only scratched the surface of it capabilities. For instance, it can be used with Nexpose for vulnerability scanning, with Nmap for port scanning, and with its numerous auxiliary modules, nearly unlimited other hacking related capabilities.
If you have made the switch from Windows to Linux, I want to congratulate you in advance. I'm sure you have noticed a huge performance increase when using Linux over other operating systems. This is only half the battle, though! Most users who are new to Linux end up using Ubuntu. I have no gripes with Ubuntu, but I do not agree with their philosophy. It almost mimics Windows. Ubuntu favors ease of use, and despite valiant efforts by the development team thus far (Ubuntu is crazy fast), all o...
This morning, I received a message from a friend who was reading a hack log, and she had some questions about the commands used. This got me thinking, as Linux has a ton of commands and some can be archaic, yet useful. We are going to go over everything you need to know to read a hack log and hopefully implant the steps in your head for future use.
As most of you know, I am a strong advocate for using Linux for hacking. In fact, I would go so far as to say that you cannot be a hacker without knowing Linux well. I laid out various reasons for this in my "Why Every Hacker Should Know & Use Linux" article, and I even have a lengthy, continuing series on Linux Basics to help those new to Linux master it.
When it comes to hacking guides, most are written from the perspective of a Linux user. There are a few outliers, but it's mainly Linux, which leads to the idea that Linux is the only OS that's viable for hacking. This couldn't be further from the truth. A properly set up Apple machine can do quite a bit of heavy lifting.