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An ARP based Operating System version scanner
Shell C++ Objective-C
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README

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                       |/    )_)  (_______/  |/       

                      Neighbor Cache Fingerprinter

   Operating System Detection via Extrapolation of ARP Cache Characteristics

                    Created by David Clark (PherricOxide)

==============================================================================
                               Introduction
==============================================================================

	This tool provides a mechanism for remote operating system detection by
extrapolating characteristics of the target system's underlying Neighbor Cache
and general ARP behavior.  Given the non-existence of any standard specification
for how the Neighbor Cache should behave, there several differences in operating
system network stack implementations that can be used for unique identification.

	Traditional operating system fingerprinting tools such as Nmap and
xprobe2 rely on creating fingerprints from higher level protocols such as TCP,
UDP, and ICMP. The downside of these tools is that they usually require open TCP
ports AND responses to ICMP probes. The neighbor-fingerprint tool works by
sending a "Probe Packet", which is either a TCP SYN packet to a port that can be
open OR closed, OR sending a UDP packet to a cloned port, OR an ICMP Echo
request to ellicit a reply. The target machine will either respond with a
SYN/ACK, RST/ACK, or ICMP packet, but in any case it must first discover the MAC
address to send the reply to via queries to the ARP Neighbor Cache. This allows
for fingerprinting on target machines that have nothing but closed TCP ports and
give no ICMP responses.
	
	What is the Neighbor Cache? The Neighbor Cache is an operating system's
mapping of network addresses to link layer addresses maintained and updated via
the protocol ARP (Address Resolution Protocol) in IPv4 or NDP (Neighbor
Discovery Protocol) in IPv6. The Neighbor Cache can be as simple as a lookup
table updated every time an ARP or NDP reply is seen, to something as complex as
a cache that has multiple timeout values for each entry, which are updated based
on positive feedback from higher level protocols and usage characteristics of
that entry by the operating system's applications, along with restrictions on
malformed or unsolicited update packets.

	The main disadvantage of this tool versus traditional fingerprinting is
that because it's based on a Layer 2 protocol instead of a Layer 3 protocol, the
target machine that is being tested must reside on the same Ethernet broadcast
domain (usually the same physical network).

==============================================================================
                            Tool Installation
==============================================================================

	First, you must get the following dependencies,
		boost-program-options
		pcap library
		dumbnet library

	On Ubuntu this can be done with the standard package manager with,
		sudo apt-get install libboost-program-options-dev libpcap-dev libdumbnet-dev

	Then build with the standard commands,
		./configure
		make
		sudo make install


==============================================================================
                            Tool Usage
==============================================================================

	Details of the command line arguments are provided by the --help flag,

		neighbor-fingerprint --help

	To run the standard Operating System scan on a host,

		neighbor-fingerprint --dstip x.x.x.x --spoofip x.x.x.x

	IMPORTANT NOTE! 
		The spoofip field should be an IP address that is unused on your
	network. Several tests depend on the fact that this spoofed source IP
	address is not already in the ARP cache of the machine being scanned.
	If you know your network well, you can choose an IP address you know
	is unused. If not, you'll need to use a tool like Nmap or arp-scan
	to find an unused IP address to use. You'll also have to change the
	spoofip if you rerun the tool to ensure the most accurate results,
	as some systems will keep the IP in their ARP cache for up to 20 minutes.

	Note: The default fingerprint scan takes about 5 minutes.


==============================================================================
             Fingerprint Technique: Number of ARP Requests
==============================================================================

	When an operating system performs an ARP query it will often resend the
request multiple times in case the request or reply was lost. A simple count
of the number of requests that are sent can provide a fingerprint feature. In
addition, there can be differences in the number of responses to open and closed
ports due to multiple retries on the higher level protocols, and attempting to
send a Probe multiple times can result in different numbers of ARP requests
(Android will initially send 2 ARP requests, but the second time it will only
send 1).

For example, 

        Windows XP:  Sends 1 request
	Windows 7:   Sends 3 if Probe to closed port (9 if Probe to open port)
	Linux:       Sends 3 requests
	Android 3:  Sends 2 requests the first Probe, then 1 request after

A minimum and maximum number of requests seen is recorded in the fingerprint.

==============================================================================
               Fingerprint Technique: Timing of ARP Request Retries
==============================================================================

	On hosts that retry ARP requests, the timing values can be used to
deduce more information.  Linux hosts generally have a constant retry time of 1
second, while Windows hosts generally back off on the timing, sending their
first retry between 500ms and 1s later, and their second retry after 1 second.

	The fingerprint contains the minimum time difference between requests
seen, maximum time difference, and a boolean value indicating if the time
differences are constant or changing 


==============================================================================
             Fingerprint Technique: Time before cache entry expires
==============================================================================

	After a proper request/reply ARP exchange, the Neighbor Cache gets an
entry put in it for the IP address and for a certain amount of time
communication will continue without additional ARP requests. At some point, the
operating system will decide the entry in the cache is stale and make an attempt
to update it by sending a new ARP request. 

	To test this a Probe Packet is sent, an ARP exchange happens, and then Probe
Packets are sent once per second until another ARP request is seen. 

Operating system response examples, 

Windows XP                  : Timeout after 10 minutes (if referred to)
Windows 7/Vista/Server 2008 : Timeout between 15 seconds and 45 seconds
Freebsd                     : Timeout after 20 minutes 
Linux                       : Timeout usually around 30 seconds

	More research needs to be done on the best way to capture the values of
delay_first_probe_time and differences between stale timing and actually falling
out of the table and being gc'ed in Linux.

	Waiting 20 minutes to finish the OS scan is infeasible in most cases, so
the fingerprinting mode only waits about 60 seconds. This may be changed later
to make it easier to detect an oddity in older windows targets where cache
entries expire faster if they aren't used (TODO).

==============================================================================
           Fingerprint Technique: Response to Gratuitous ARP Replies
==============================================================================

	A gratuitous or unsolicited ARP reply is an ARP reply for which there
was no request.  The usual use case for this is notification of machines on the
network of IP changes or systems coming online. The problem for implementers is
that several of the fields in the ARP packet no longer make much sense. 

	Who is the Target Protocol Address for the ARP packet? The broadcast
address? Zero? The specification surprisingly says neither: the Target Protocol
Address should be the same IP address as the Sender Protocol Address.

	When there's no specific target for the ARP packet, the Target Hardware
Address also becomes a confusing field. The specification says it's value
shouldn't matter, but should be set to zero.  However, most implementations will
use the Ethernet broadcast address of FF:FF:FF:FF:FF instead, because internally
they have some function to send an ARP reply that only takes one argument for
the destination MAC address (and is put in both the Ethernet frame destination
and the ARP packet's Target Hardware Address). We can also experiment with
setting the Target Hardware Address to the same thing as the Sender Hardware
Address (the same method the spec says to use for the Target Protocol field).

	Even the ARP opcode becomes confusing in the case of unsolicited ARP
packets. Is it a "request" for other machines to update their cache? Or is it a
"reply", even though it isn't a reply to anything?  Most operating systems will
update their cache no matter the opcode.

	There are several variations of the gratuitous ARP packet that can be
generated by changing the following fields,

Ethernet Frame Destination Address : Bcast or the MAC of our target
ARP Target Hardware Address        : 0, bcast, or the MAC of our target
ARP Target Protocol Address        : 0 or the IP address of our target
ARP Opcode                         : REPLY or REQUEST

	This results in 36 different gratuitous packet permutations.	

	Most operating systems have the interesting behavior that they will
ignore gratuitous ARP packets if the sender is not in the Neighbor Cache
already, but if the sender is in the Neighbor Cache, they will update the MAC
address, and in some operating systems also update the timeouts.


	The following sequence shows the testing technique for this feature,

Send ARP packet that is known to update most caches with srcmac = srcMacArg
Send gratuitous ARP packet that is currently being tested with srcmac = srcMacArg + 1
Send Probe Packet with a source MAC address of srcMacArg in the Ethernet frame

	The first packet attempts to get the cache entry into a known state: up
to date and storing the source MAC address that is our default or the command
line argument --srcmac. The following ARP packet is the actual probe
permutation that's being tested.

	If the reply to the Probe Packet is to (srcMacArg + 1), then we know the
gratuitous packet successfully updated the cache entry. If the reply to the
Probe is just (srcMacArg), then we know the cache was not updated and still
contains the old value.

	The reason the Ethernet frame source MAC address in the Probe is set to
the original srcMacArg is to ensure the target isn't just replying to the MAC
address it sees packets from and is really pulling the entry out of ARP.

	Sometimes the Neighbor Cache entry will get into a state that makes it
ignore gratuitous packets even though, given a normal state, it would accept
them and update the entry. This can result in some timing related result
changes. For now I haven't made an attempt to fix this


==============================================================================
Fingerprint Technique: Can we get put into the cache with a gratuitous packet?
==============================================================================

	As mentioned in the last section, most operating systems won't add a new
entry to the cache given a gratuitous ARP packet, but they will update existing
entries. One of the few differences between Windows XP and FreeBSD's fingerprint
is that we can place an entry in the cache by sending a certain gratuitous
packet to a FreeBSD machine, and test if it was in the cache by seeing if a
Probe gets a response or not.

==============================================================================
Fingerprint Technique: ARP Flood Prevention (Ignored rapid ARP replies)
==============================================================================

RFC1122 (Requirements for Internet Hosts) states,

	"A mechanism to prevent ARP flooding (repeatedly sending an ARP Request
   for the same IP address, at a high rate) MUST be included.  The recommended
   maximum rate is 1 per second per destination."

	Linux will not only ignore duplicate REQUEST packets within a certain
time, but also duplicate REPLY packets. We can test this by sending a set of
unsolicited ARP replies within a short time range with different MAC addresses
being reported by each reply. Sending a Probe will reveal in the Probe response
destination MAC address if the host responds to the first MAC address we ARPed
or the last, indicating if it ignored the later rapid replies.


==============================================================================
       Fingerprint Technique: Correct Reply to RFC5227 ARP Probe
==============================================================================

	This test sends an "ARP Probe" as defined by RFC 5227 (IPv4 Address
Conflict Detection) and checks the response to see if it confirms to the
specification. The point of the ARP Probe is to check if an IP address is being
used without the risk of accidentally causing someone's ARP cache to update with
your own MAC address when it sees your query. Given that you're likely trying to
tell if an IP address is being used because you want to claim it, you likely
don't have an IP address of your own yet, so the Sender Protocol Address field
is set to 0 in the ARP REQUEST.

The RFC specifies the response as,

      "(the probed host) MAY elect to attempt to defend its address by ...
   broadcasting one single ARP Announcement, giving its own IP and hardware
   addresses as the sender addresses of the ARP, with the 'target IP address' set
   to its own IP address, and the 'target hardware address' set to all zeros."

  But any Linux kernel older than 2.6.24 and some other operating systems will
respond incorrectly, with a packet that has tpa == spa and tha == sha. Checking
if tpa == 0 has proven sufficient for a boolean fingerprint feature.


==============================================================================
                  TODO RESEARCH IN PROGRESS Fingerprint Technique
               Feedback from higher protocols extending timeout values
==============================================================================

	Linux has the ability to extend timeout values if there's positive
feedback from higher level protocols, such as a 3 way TCP handshake. Need to
write tests for this and do some source diving in the kernel to see what else
counts besides a 3 way handshake for positive feedback.

==============================================================================
             TODO RESEARCH IN PROGRESS Fingerprint Technique
        Infer Neighbor Cache size by flooding to cause entry dumping
==============================================================================

	Can we fill the ARP table with garbage entries in order for it to start
dumping old ones?  Can we reliably use this to infer the table size, even with
Linux's near random cache garbage collection rules? Can we do this on class A
networks, or do we really need class B network subnets in order to make this a
viable test?


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