Enumerating Attack Vectors

Helpful Tools


Exploit Suggesters:

  • winPEAS: Windows local Privilege Escalation Awesome Script.

  • Seatbelt: C# local privilege escalation checks.

  • PowerUp: PowerShell script for finding common Windows privilege escalation vectors that rely on misconfigurations.

  • SharpUp: C# version of PowerUp .

  • JAWS: PowerShell script for enumerating privilege escalation vectors written in PowerShell 2.0 .

  • Watson: .NET tool to enumerate missing KBs and suggest exploits.

  • Metasploit Local Exploit Suggester: use post/multi/recon/local_exploit_suggester on a backgrounded meterpreter sessions .


  • LaZagne: Retrieve passwords stored on a local machine from Windows password storage mechanisms and many different sources.

  • MimiKatz: Extract credentials, perform PtH, PtT, craft golden tickets and more.

  • SessionGopher: PowerShell tool to find and decrypt saved session information for remote access tools.

Enumerating Windows Protection

  • Check Windows Defender status: Get-MpComputerStatus

  • List AppLocker rules: Get-AppLockerPolicy -Effective \| select -ExpandProperty RuleCollections

  • Test AppLocker policy: Get-AppLockerPolicy -Local \| Test-AppLockerPolicy -path C:\Windows\System32\cmd.exe -User Everyone

Processes, Jobs, Scheduled Tasks

  • Dislpay all running processes (PowerShell): Get-Process

  • List named pipes: pipelist.exe /accepteula

  • List named pipes with PowerShell: gci \\.\pipe\

  • Review permissions on a named pipe: accesschk.exe /accepteula \\.\Pipe\lsass -v

  • Display running processes: tasklist /svc

  • Enumerate scheduled tasks: schtasks /query /fo LIST /v

  • Get ACLs for a specific scheduled task: icacls C:\Users\dude\Desktop\example.exe

  • Enumerate scheduled tasks with PowerShell: Get-ScheduledTask \| select TaskName,State

  • Enumerate all Unquoted Service Paths: wmic service get name,displayname,pathname,startmode \| findstr /i "auto" \| findstr /i /v "c:\windows\\" \| findstr /i /v """

Kernel and OS

  • Display all environment variables: set

  • View detailed system configuration information: systeminfo

  • Get patches and updates: wmic qfe

  • Get installed programs: wmic product get name

  • Get Installed programs in PowerShell: Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_Product \| select Name, Version

  • Enumerate computer description field: Get-WmiObject -Class Win32_OperatingSystem \| select Description


  • Query for always install elevated registry key (1): reg query HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer

  • Query for always install elevated registry key (2): reg query HKLM\SOFTWARE\Policies\Microsoft\Windows\Installer

  • Find PuTTY clear-text credentials: reg query HKEY_CURRENT_USER\Software\SimonTatham\PuTTY\Session\

Users and Groups

  • Get logged-in users: query user

  • Get current user: echo %USERNAME%

  • View current user privileges: whoami /priv

  • View current user group information: whoami /groups

  • Get all system user: net user

  • Get all system groups: net localgroup

  • View details about a group: net localgroup administrators

  • Get password policy: net accounts

  • Check permissions on a directory: .\accesschk64.exe /accepteula -s -d C:\Scripts\

  • Check local user description field: Get-LocalUser

  • Run commands as another user (requires their password): runas /user:backupadmin cmd

  • Display active network connections: netstat -ano

  • Get interface, IP address and DNS information: ipconfig /all

  • Review ARP table: arp -a

  • Review routing table: route print

Installed Applications

check installed applications: Get-ItemProperty "HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Wow6432Node\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\*" | select displayname

check installed applications (alternative): Get-ItemProperty "HKLM:\SOFTWARE\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Uninstall\*" | select displayname

Credential Hunting

  • Search common configuration files containing the word "password": findstr /SIM /C:"password" *.txt *.ini *.cfg *.config *.xml

  • Searching file contents for a string: findstr /spin "password" *.*

  • Search file contents with PowerShell: select-string -Path C:\Users\htb-student\Documents\*.txt -Pattern password

  • Search for file extensions: dir /S /B *pass*.txt == *pass*.xml == *pass*.ini == *cred* == *vnc* == *.config*

  • Search for file extensions (alternative): Get-ChildItem -Path C:\ -Include *.txt,*.ini -File -Recurse -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue

  • Search for file extensions using PowerShell: Get-ChildItem C:\ -Recurse -Include *.rdp, *.config, *.vnc, *.cred -ErrorAction Ignore

  • List cmdkey saved credentials (in memory): cmdkey /list

  • Run SessionGopher to extract credentials: Import-Module .\SessionGopher.ps1Invoke-SessionGopher -Target WINLPE-SRV01

  • Retrieve saved Chrome credentials: .\SharpChrome.exe logins /unprotect

  • Search Chrome Dictionary Files containing passwords: gc 'C:\Users\username\AppData\Local\Google\Chrome\User Data\Default\Custom Dictionary.txt' \| Select-String password

  • Read the PowerShell History File: gc (Get-PSReadLineOption).HistorySavePath

  • Retrieve saved wireless passwords: netsh wlan show profile WIFINAME key=clear

  • Enumerate unattended installation files (files named unattend.xml) which may contain passwords, which are stored in plaintext or base64

  • Enumerate .kdbx KeePass files and extract credentials using python2.7 keepass2john.py file.kdbx, followed by hashcat -m 13400

  • Extract clipboard (copy-paste) data: git clone https://github.com/inguardians/Invoke-Clipboard/blob/master/Invoke-Clipboard.ps1

  • Search current user's history file content (PowerShell): Get-History

  • Find all accessible PowerShell history files: foreach($user in ((ls C:\users).fullname)){cat "$user\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\PowerShell\PSReadline\ConsoleHost_history.txt" -ErrorAction SilentlyContinue}

  • Display a user's specific history file's content: type C:\Users\{USERNAME}\AppData\Roaming\Microsoft\Windows\PowerShell\PSReadLine\ConsoleHost_history.txt

  • Retrieve password from Windows Sticky Notes: C:\Users\<user>\AppData\Local\Packages\Microsoft.MicrosoftStickyNotes_8wekyb3d8bbwe\LocalState\plum.sqlite

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