Hello readers. Today our readers will learn about installing mate desktop in Kali Linux. You all know the first release of Kali Linux this year, Kali Linux 2020.1 has been released in the month of January. The latest version brought many changes like not giving root user by default and some new tools. The most distinct change it brought is a single installer image for installation. Earlier we had different installation images for different desktop environments which include GNOME, KDE etc.
With 2020.1 release, there will be a single installation image for all these and users would have to select the desktop environment he/she needs while installing. The information about different desktop environments and their pros and cons can be seen here.

Today we will see a tutorial on how to install MATE Desktop environment in Kali Linux 2020.1. MATE Desktop although looks old fashioned is light and has a simple interface. Here’s how to install MATE desktop environment in Kali Linux 2020.1. We have performed this tutorial from a X11 terminal but all these commands can be run from any other desktop environment’s terminal. Power on the Kali 2020.1 virtual machine and login (since there is no root user you should login as a user you created or the default user:password i.e kali:kali).

Open a terminal and using nano open the file /etc/apt/sources.list. with sudo

Add these two lines of code to the file and save it.
deb http://kali.download/kali kali-rolling main non-free contrib
deb-src http://kali.download/kali kali-rolling main non-free contrib

To save the file hit CTRl+X and when it prompts select “Yes”.Run command sudo apt-get update

Now everything is ready to install MATE desktop. Run the command given below.
sudo apt-get install mate-core mate-desktop-environment-extra mate-desktop-environment-extras

When the system prompts you for permission to install MATE and its related software, type “Y”.

The installation will take some time to finish. After the installation is finished, restart the syste m (the command is sudo reboot or reboot if you are doing it from terminal). Once the system reboots and takes you to the login screen, before logging in click on the “settings” icon beside the “Signin” button. There you will see all the desktop environments present on the system right now. Select MATE and then login.

MATE desktop has been successfully installed on the system.

In our previous article, we have seen how to exploit the rexec and remotelogin services running on ports 512 and 513 of our target Metasploitable 2 system. In this article, we will be hacking proftpd on port 2121 and the service running on port 1524 which are next in the Nmap scan report as shown below. On running a verbose scan, we can see that the service running on port 1524 is Metasploitable Root shell.

What is this Root shell? In our Metasploitable Tutorials, we have seen a number of ways to gain a shell or meterpreter session on the target system. But these shells were obtained by hacking some software present on the system. This shell is deliberately left on the system. But why would someone leave a shell deliberately on a system?
In cyber security, there is a concept called trapdoors or backdoors. As soon as hackers gain access to a system by hacking something on it, they plant an easy and quick method to once again come back into the system. This is known as trapdoor or backdoor. The shell on port 1524 is a shell like that. Usually to prevent other hackers from gaining access to the system through their backdoor they use protection like passwords etc. Here it seems the hacker forgot to secure it. Normally backdoors like these are enabled on some common ports which evoke less suspicion from cyber security personnel. But how do we gain access to this shell? Although there are a number of ways to do this, the easiest way is telnet.
Open telnet and telnet to the port 1524 as shown below. As you can see highlighted below, we got a shell with Root access without doing much.

Try out some linux commands to verify we got a shell with some interaction.

As you can see in the above image, we have shell with ROOT privileges. We can even change the target system’s password now. Now let’s move on to hacking ProFTPd.
Verbose scan has reported that a FTP server named ProFTPd server version 1.3.1 is running on port 2121. I googled for any vulnerabilities present in the particular version but got none. If you remember, we already hacked one FTP server running on port 21.
I used banner grabbing method of telnet (we showed you in detail about this method in of our Hackercool magazine) to see if the service will reveal any more information about itself. It gave nothing except the usual one.

The usual banner grabbing was not working. But maybe we don’t require a banner.We already have it. So this time, I just tried to connect to the service using telnet (although you can also use FTP for this). When “Escape character is ‘^]’ ” message is displayed, I type command “help”. As expected, it gives me all the commands that can be used. So it seems we already have access to the target server.

To confirm this, I tried one command. It prompted me for username and password. But thanks to an excellent phase of enumeration we performed, we already have the username and password. I decided to try the username/password msfadmin/msfadmin. Voila, it worked and we have access to the system now. Typing PWD command gives me the confirmation that I am inside the system. That’s all with hacking ProFTPd.

In this post, we will target the rexec, remote login and remote shell services running on ports 512, 513 and 514 respectively. Performing a verbose scan on the target gives me the result as shown in the image below.

Before we exploit these services, let me explain as to what these services are. Remote execution service popularly called Rexec is a service which allows users to execute non-interactive commands on another remote system. This remote system should be running a remote exec daemon or server (rexecd) as in the case of our Metasploitable 2 target here. By default, this service requires a valid user name and password for the target system.(For your information, we already have the credentials which we acquired during enumeration).
Rlogin or Remote Login service is a remote access service which allows an authorized user to login to UNIX machines (hosts). This service allows the logged user to operate the remote machine as if he is logged into the physical machine. This service is similar to other remote services like telnet and SSH. This service by default runs on port 513.
Rsh or Remote shell is a remote access service that allows users a shell on the target system. Authentication is not required for this service. By default it runs on port 514.

Although Rsh doesn’t require a password, it requires the username belonging to the remote system. As discussed above, we already have the credentials. In case we don’t have the credentials, we have to crack the passwords as explained in one of our previous posts.
Rsh daemon can be installed in the Kali Linux machine using the command apt-get install rsh-server. Once the installation is over, the below command can be used to get a shell on the target machine. I have tried this with the username root. As you can see, we successfully got a shell on the target system.

The next service we will target is Remote Login running on port 514. The command to get remote login is given in the image below.

As you can see, we once again got a shell on the target system. Using Rexec is also almost similar to the methods shown above.

WARNING : This knowledge is only for ethical purposes. Misuse this info at your own risk.

Good morning ethical hackers. Polycom HDX devices are popular worldwide for video conferencing. They are fit for meeting rooms and conference halls of various sizes as they support 1 to 3 displays. The login component of the Polycom Command Shell on Polycom HDX video endpoints, running software versions 3.0.5 and earlier, is vulnerable to an authorization bypass when simultaneous connections are made to the service, allowing remote network attackers to gain access to a sandboxed telnet prompt without authentication.

So when all the conventional methods to get access to a network, this can work as an entry point of course if they are using this product. Let us see how this can be used in our pen test. Start Metasploit and load the exploit as shown below.


Set the target and check if it’s vulnerable as shown below using “check” command.



You can use the default payload or choose the required payload. I am using the below payload. After setting payload, type command “run” to run the exploit.  The exploit works as shown below.



NOTE: This howto is part of a series “Metasploitable tutorials”.

Good morning friends. In the previous part of the tutorial, we performed a vulnerability scan on our target Metasploitable and got some high ranking vulnerabilities. Before we take the plunge and exploit those vulnerabilities, let’s do some enumeration first.

Enumeration is the process of collecting information about user names, network resources, other machine names,  shares and services running on the network. Although little bit boring, it can be very helpful for the success of the hack in real time. In our previous parts, we have performed scanning and banner grabbing. So we already know what services are running on the target machine. They include FTP,telnet, SMTP and SMB etc. We can perform enumeration on all these services.

SMB stands for Server Message Block. Its mainly used for providing shared access to files, printers and miscellaneous communications between nodes on a network. It also provides an authenticated inter-process communication mechanism. It is a predecessor of  Common Internet File system (CIFS). To know more about SMB please go here.

SMB enumeration can provide a treasure trove of information about our target. So for today’s tutorial let’s see how to perform SMB enumeration with Kali Linux. I will use three tools inbuilt in Kali Linux : enum4linux, acccheck and SMBMap.

The first tool we will use is enum4linux. As the name suggests, it is a tool used for enumeration of Linux. To see all the options of this tool, just type “enum4linux -h“. Using this tool, first let us see the users of the SMB service. Open terminal and type command “enum4linux -U” as shown below.


As we can see above, this system is part of a workgroup. Know the difference between domain and workgroup. We can see below that it has listed all the SMB users present on the target.


Of all the usernames the tool got us, I am assuming only three usernames are useful to us: user,root and msfadmin since others seem more like processes but we will keep our fingers crossed.


Before we check for validity of these credentials, let us perform a full enumeration with enum4linux. In the terminal type command “enum4linux” i.e without any options.  As you can see below, it lists us Nbtstat information of what services are active on the target.


It also provides us with the OS information.


And crucial info about Shares, i.e which user has what rights on the target.



It provides us password policy info, in case we don’t get the credentials and want to crack them.


Groups present on the system.


It will also display users based on RID cycling.


It seems there are no printers connected to the target.


Ok, now we know the users. Let’s try to find out the passwords for the usernames we seem to have got. We will use a tool called acccheck for this purpose. It is a password dictionary attack tool that targets windows authentication via the SMB protocol.  We will see more about password cracking later. First I will try it with the user “user”. In Kali Linux, most of the password dictionaries are present in “usr/share/dirb” directory. So I specify a dictionary which consists of most common passwords used.

Here, I am just guessing that the user may be using a common password. After specifying all the options, Hit Enter. The cracking process starts as shown below.


Once the tool gets the correct password, it stops the scan and displays a success message as shown below. Voila … the password of the user “user” is “user” only.


Seeing this result, I get a new idea. There might be a possibility that all the users may be using their username as password. To find out this, I create a new file called user.txt with all the usernames we got with enum4linux and specify the file for both username and password as shown below.


We got succces with three users; user, msfadmin and a blank user with password “games”. Since we successfully got some credentials, it’s time to see the share drives on our target system. For this, we will use another tool called SMBMap.

SMBMap allows users to enumerate samba share drives across an entire domain. List share drives, drive permissions, share contents, upload/download functionality, file name auto-download pattern matching, and even execute remote commands.

First let us check the rights of each user we got as shown below.




We can see that users user and msfadmin have READ,WRITE permissions on tmp directory only and the Blank user doesn’t have much. Next let us try to list all the drives on the target system with user “msfadmin”. We can see we don’t have enough privileges to execute a command.


Since we have READ privileges, let us read the drive on the target system as shown below. Well that’s all for SMB enumeration guys.



RESULT: We got some usernames which may be useful to us while exploiting the system in future.

NOTE: This howto is a part of a series of Metasploitable Tutorials but can also be read separately.

Good morning friends. In one of our previous howto’s, we saw how to install OpenVAS in Kali Linux. Today we will see how to perform a vulnerability assessment with OpenVAS. The target on which I have performed this vulnerability assessment is Metasploitable. Start Kali Linux ( The system on which we have installed OpenVAS,,, obviously). Open a terminal and type the following commands as underlined below.


Then  open a browser and direct the browser to port no 9392 as shown below. You should get the following interface.


We will perform a quick scan. In the blank given, enter the IP address of our target as shown below and click on “Start Scan” as shown below.



The scan will run as shown below. It will take quite a bit of a long time. So I would suggest you go and eat some pani puri and come back.


Once you are back, the scan should be finished and will look as shown below. Click on the link shown below.


You should get a general summary of the scan.


Now let us see the scan report. Go to “Scan Management” tab and click on Reports as shown below. It will show you a list of scans we performed. In our case, there is only one scan.


Now click on the scan as shown below.


This is our entire scan report with all the vulnerabilities existing in our target classified from high to low.





In our next howtos, we will see how to exploit all these ( which means most of them ) vulnerabilities. Until then, Good bye.