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SAP Dissector Plugin for Wireshark

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SECUREAUTH LABS. Copyright (C) 2021 SecureAuth Corporation. All rights reserved.

Version 0.9.2.dev0 (XXX 2021)


SAP Netweaver and SAP HANA are technology platforms for building and integrating SAP business applications. Communication between components uses different network protocols. While some of them are standard and well-known protocols, others are proprietaries and public information is not available.

This Wireshark plugin provides dissection of SAP's NI, Message Server, Router, Diag, Enqueue, IGS, SNC and HDB protocols. The dissectors are based on information acquired at researching the different protocols and services. Additional experimental support is included for SAP's RFC protocol. Detailed information about the research can be found in pysap's documentation.


This plugin counts on several dissectors:

  • SAP NI Protocol dissector

    This is the dissector for SAP's Network Interface (NI) protocol. The dissector handles reassembling of fragmented TCP packets and identifies keep-alive messages (PING/PONG). It also calls the respective sub-dissector according to the port being used.

  • SAP Router Protocol dissector

    This dissector includes support for the SAP Router protocol, handling route, control messages and error information packets. The dissector also calls the SNC sub-dissector when SNC frames are found.

  • SAP Diag Protocol dissector

    The main dissector of the plugin. It dissects the main headers used by the Diag protocol: DP, Diag and Compression headers. The dissector also handles decompression of the payload data and includes dissection of relevant Diag payload items, including Support Bits and common APPL/APPL4 items. Wireshark's expert information capabilities are used to remark malformed or wrong packets. The dissector also calls the RFC sub-dissector when an embedded RFC call is found, and the SNC sub-dissector when SNC frames are found.

  • SAP Message Server Protocol dissector

    This module dissects the packets used by SAP's Message Server Protocol in its binary non-HTTP format, for both internal and external ports.

  • SAP Enqueue Protocol dissector

    This module dissects packets used by SAP's Standalone Enqueue and Replication Servers.

  • SAP SNC (Secure Network Connection) Protocol dissector

    This dissector parses SNC frames and their fields. When the frames contain wrapped data that wasn't encrypted, it allows calling dissectors to get access to the unwrapped data for further dissecting it, as the case of Diag dissector when SNC is used in authentication only or integrity protection quality of protection levels.

  • SAP IGS (Internet Graphic Server) Protocol dissector

    This dissector parses packets used by SAP's IGS services.

  • SAP HDB (HANA SQL Command Network) Protocol dissector

    This dissector parses HANA SQL Command Network Protocol packets. It supports HDB over TLS with the form of a "Decode as" dissector. The main Part Kind formats used during the authentication and initialization of the connections are supported, but others are still missing. Decompression of compressed packets is not yet supported.

  • SAP RFC (Remote Function Call) Protocol dissector (experimental)

    This dissector performs some basic dissection on the main components of the RFC protocol. It dissects general items and does some basic reassembling and decompression of table contents.

Installation & Build

This Wireshark plugin is not distributed as part of the Wireshark source. It can be built as a standalone plugin, or as part of Wireshark, and is compatible with version 3.4.

Installing on Linux

As a standalone plugin

To build and install the plugin on Debian/Ubuntu linux distributions:

sudo add-apt-repository ppa:wireshark-dev/stable -y
sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install wireshark wireshark-dev
git clone
cd SAP-Dissection-plug-in-for-Wireshark/
mkdir build
cd build
cmake ..
make install

As part of Wireshark

The following steps are required to build and install the plugin as part of Wireshark:

  1. Download and decompress the Wireshark version 3.4 source or checkout the code from the source repository.

    git clone
    cd wireshark
    git checkout release-3.4
  2. Copy the SAP Wireshark Plugin to a new plugins/epan/sap directory.

    git clone plugins/epan/sap
  3. Configure the plugin to be included in the build process. This step can be performed using the patch file provided. At the root directory run:

    git apply plugins/epan/sap/wireshark-release-3.4.patch
  4. Perform a new build including the plugin. At the root directory run:

    mkdir -p build
    cd build
    cmake ..
    make install

Using Vagrant

Vagrant is a Virtual Machine management software that allows creating reproducible virtual machines. In order to make it easier to compile and test the plugin, a pre-configured Vagrantfile is provided for using it with Vagrant 1.8. The Vagrantfile provided with the plugin is configured to use VirtualBox and perform a build of the plugin inside a Ubuntu 18.04 distribution.

Two machines are provided to build the plugin:

  • source: for building the plugin as part of Wireshark.
  • standalone: for building the plugin as a standalone plugin.

The following steps can be used to setup a Vagrant machine and build the plugin:

  1. Install VirtualBox and Vagrant 1.8 or greater.

    sudo apt-get install virtualbox vagrant
  2. Inside the plugin's directory, launch the desired Vagrant machine, in this case standalone:

    vagrant up standalone
  3. Login into the Vagrant machine and run Wireshark:

    vagrant ssh standalone

Installing on Windows

Windows build can be only performed as part of the whole Wireshark. The following steps are required to compile the plugin on Windows:

  1. Follow the step-to-step guide for building Wireshark on Windows.

  2. Copy the SAP Wireshark Plugin to a new plugins/epan/sap directory.

  3. Configure the plugin to be included in the build process. This step can be performed using the patch file provided. At the root directory run:

    git apply plugins/epan/sap/wireshark-release-3.4.patch
  4. Perform a new build including the plugin.

Installing on OSX

The build process for OSX is similar to the one for Linux systems. It was reported that compiling Wireshark on OSX requires fixing link for the gettext library if it was installed using homebrew.

Penetration testing distribution and frameworks

The plugin is available for installation on several penetration testing distributions and frameworks.

Installing on Pentoo

Installation on the Pentoo livecd distribution:

emerge net-misc/wireshark-sap-plugin

Installing with The PenTesters Framework (PTF)

Installation on Debian, Ubuntu and ArchLinux can be performed using The PenTesters Framework (PTF). From inside the ptf command-line, run:

use modules/intelligence-gathering/sap-wireshark-plugin

Using Docker

jbelamor built a docker container for compiling and setting up the plugin. Check it out at docker_wireshark_sap_plugin.

Additional notes

It's worth mentioning that compression libraries for SAP Diag/RFC protocol are originally written in C++, thus the entire plugin needs to be compiled for C++. See Wireshark's portability notes for more information.


Traffic dissection

After the plugin is installed, it will automatically dissect SAP protocols' traffic if using default ports. If required, ports can be modified on SAP NI protocol as well as sub-dissectors' preferences.

SAP NI preferences

SAP Diag preferences

SAP Diag Gui Logon Password filter

DYNT_ATOM items contains data entered into screen fields. The following filter could be used for identifying packets containing fields marked as "invisible" (fields that are masked in the SAP GUI screen) in search for sensitive data. Early packets in a Diag session probably contains values for user id and password fields.

sapdiag.item.value.dyntatom.item.attr.INVISIBLE == 1

The same results can be achieved also using expert info (security group):


SAP Diag login password


This Wireshark plugin is distributed under the GPLv2 license. Check the COPYING file for more details.


The library was designed and developed by Martin Gallo from SecureAuth's Innovation Labs team, with the help of many contributors.


Contributions made by:


The spirit of this Open Source initiative is to help security researchers, and the community, speed up research and educational activities related to the implementation of networking protocols and stacks.

The information in this repository is for research and educational purposes and not meant to be used in production environments and/or as part of commercial products.

If you desire to use this code or some part of it for your own uses, we recommend applying proper security development life cycle and secure coding practices, as well as generate and track the respective indicators of compromise according to your needs.

Contact Us

Whether you want to report a bug, send a patch, or give some suggestions on this package, drop us a few lines at

For security-related questions check our security policy.