TryHackMe: Complete Beginner

author: Nathan Acks
date: 2021-11-02

Linux PrivEsc

Cron Jobs

Remember the locate tool! It’s faster than find (assuming that it’s installed, and the database is up-to-date, and the file you’re looking for is accessible to nobody…).

Also, the Bash reverse shell makes an appearance here!

Remember that SUID Bash will drop privileges by default; execute with the -p option to avoid this.

Okay, this is wild… It looks like the wildcard expansion (*) in Bash scripts doesn’t get pushed to the command, but is instead expanded in place. This means that files named like command-line switches will be interpreted as command line switches. This can be used, for example, to exploit sloppy tar-based backup scripts.

SUID / SGID Executables

Quick-n-dirty command to find all SUID/SGID executables.

find / -type f \
       -a \( -perm -u+s -o -perm -g+s \) \
       -exec ls -l {} \; 2> /dev/null

Quickly see what shared libraries an executable is trying to load:

strace $EXECUTABLE 2>&1 | grep open

If there are missing libraries in paths that we’re able to access, then code similar to the LD_PRELOAD trick can be used to inject malicious code

Running strings on a binary can also give us a sense of what helper applications might be getting executed.

There are lots of wacky things you can do with Bash.


Files created on NFS shares inherit the remote UID. By default, NFS enables “root squashing”, which maps UID 0 to the nobody user.

Root squashing can be disabled in /etc/exports with the no_root_squash flag.

Unrelatedly, msfvenom can be used to generate executables that immediately shell out, similar to the LD_PRELOAD trick.

Kernel Exploits

Privilege Escalation Scripts

LinEnum is very fast, but LSE and LinPEAS produce more intelligible output.