Analysis Of System Penetration Testing Computer Science Essay

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Peneteration testing is used to check the security issues of a computer system or networks in an organization to know what vulnerabilities are present. In this assignment i have used Metasploit exploits and buffer overflow attacks and perform the test to check the vulnerabilities both on Windows 2000 server and linux based system. I have attached the screenshots step by step by briefing what is happening during the execution of the commands.



Penetration test is the process of actively evaluating information security measures. The process involves an active analysis for any potential vulnerabilities that may result from poor or improper system configuration, known and unknown hardware flaws, or operational weaknesses in process or technical countermeasures. If there is any security issue, it has to be presented to the system owner with an assessment of their impact and a technical solution. The idea behind penetration test is to know what kind of attacks can be done, what kind of impact it will have on the business and how to prevent these attacks by securing the network or the system.

Ideally an organisation should have already conducted a risk assessment, so will be aware of the main threats such as communications failure, e-commerce failure, loss of confidential information etc can use a security assessment to identify any vulnerabilities that are related to these threats.

Things which can be tested are:

Off-the-shelf products (OS, Applications, Databases, Networking Equipment)

Bespoke development (dynamic websites, in-house applications etc)

Wireless (Wifi, Buletooth, IR)

Personnel (screening process, social engineering etc)

Physical (access controls, dumpster diving etc)

There are few techniques to perform penetration test such as Metaspoilt and Buffer Overflow Attacks which i am doing and performing attacks in this assignment.

Penetration testing the Windows 2000 sp2 core

Metasploit is an open source attack framework first developed by H.D.Moore in 2003. It is used for hacking into systems testing purposes. Metasploit provides useful information to people who perform penetration testing, IDS signature development and exploit research.

Details of an appropriate testing plan

We need fedora9/10 box with Windows 2000 server and ubuntu workstation installed and configured to perform attack using metasploit. I have used windows memory exploit to get full access on windows 2000 server. As i know what i need to check and this is called as white box testing.

Discussion of the tools used for reconnaissance and why they have been used?

Here i am using Metasploit as a tool to perform attack from ubuntu machine to attack windows 2000 server and see how we got the access and how it happened by running the test .Metasploit has exploit code for a wide range of vulnerabilities in standalone applications , web servers, operarting systems and 100 exploits and 75 payloads in version 2.4 to be exact. Also version 2.5 contains more 100 exploits to fix bugs, cosmetic change and 32 more exploits.

Metasploit is a perl based designed robust exploit. It can be used to run previously developed exploits against systems. We can use its security testing features to see if our system is vulnerable to penetration and how they react when specific payloads are sent their way.

Common commands in msfconsole

Before we see the test performed using metasploit there are few common commands which we need to know and there are mentioned below:

1 help: shows the available commands in msfconsole

2 show exploits: shows the exploits we can run

3 show payloads: shows the various payload options we can execute on the exploited system such as spawn a command shell, uploading programs to run

4 info exploit: shows a description of a specific exploit name along with its various options and requirements.

5 info payload: shows a description of a specific payload name along with its various options and requirements

6 win32_reverse: shows information on that specific attack

7 use[exploit name]: instructs msfconsole to enter into a specific exploit environment

8 show options: shows the various parameters for the specific exploit we are working with

9 show payloads: show the payloads compatible with the specific exploit we are working with

10 set PAYLOAD: allows us to set the specific payload for exploit

11 show targets: shows the available target OS/application

12 set TARGET: allows us to select the specific target OS/application

13 set RHOST: allows us to set targets ip address

14 set LHOST: allows us to set local host ip address

15 back: allows us to exit the current exploit environment we have loaded and go back to the main msfconsole prompt.


Setting ip address on ubuntu machine shown below in the screenshot.


Configuring ip address on windows 2000 server and it did show its pinging with the specific assigned ip address and also we started WINS services before setting up the specific ip address.


In this step we used nmap command in msfconsole to check the availability of open port using remote machine ip address as nmap contains port number and their state.


In this step showing exploits using msfconsole and which exploit has to be used for injection of vulnerabilities on the remote machine.


In this step by using msf command we are going to ping WINS exploit by using command use and the windows/wins/ms04_045_wins and then setting rhost ip address and then show payloads


In this step we are setting payload and doing vcinject reverse tcp and then exploit and it will allow to access remote machine


In this final step we can see attack on windows 2000 server successfully and it does show how strong is metasploit exploit.

During my test i found list of vulnerabilities which refers to the malicious code which responsible for attack on the target machine. By the combination of a particular exploit with a specific payload refers to the vulnerability in the system.