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retrace is a versatile security vulnerability / bug discovery tool through monitoring and modifying the behavior of compiled binaries on Linux, OpenBSD/FreeBSD/NetBSD (shared object) and macOS (dynamic library).

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README.adoc

Retrace

retrace is a versatile security vulnerability / bug discovery tool through monitoring and modifying the behavior of compiled binaries on Linux, OpenBSD/FreeBSD/NetBSD (shared object) and macOS (dynamic library).

retrace can be used to assist reverse engineering / debugging dynamically-linked ELF (Linux/OpenBSD/FreeBSD/NetBSD) and Mach-O (macOS) binary executables.

Build Status (Travis CI) Coverity Scan

Retrace v2

Work in a new version of retrace is ongoing, all the documentation is only about retrace v1, early documentation for retrace v2 is here.

If you want to give it a go despiste the lack of documentation you can enable it in the build using ./configure --enable-v2.

Who is Ribose?

We are Ribose, the secure sharing company. We believe privacy and security form the foundation of liberty.

Our goal is to empower individuals and organizations alike to freely communicate and achieve productivity for the greater good, through our deep security and technology expertise, creating highly-secure products validated to the world’s most stringent requirements and regulations.

We created retrace to aid developers and security researchers to develop better code that leads the world to a better place.

Contacting The Organizer

The Ribose retrace team can be reached at retrace@ribose.com. We will answer questions to the best of our efforts.

Building retrace

For platforms with Autotools, the generic way to build and install retrace is:

$ sh autogen.sh
$ ./configure --enable-tests
$ make
$ make check
$ sudo make install

You need Autotools installed in your system (autoconf, automake, libtool, make, gcc packages).

OpenSSL library and headers are automatically detected, you can specify an optional flag --with-openssl=[PATH] (to use a non-standard OpenSSL installation root).

In order to build tests: run configure script with --enable-tests flag. To build cmocka tests you can specify an optional flag --with-cmocka=[PATH] (to use a non-standard cmocka installation root).

By the default retrace is installed in /usr/bin directory.

Running retrace

$ retrace [-f configuration file location] <executable>

Configuration file path can be set either in RETRACE_CONFIG environment variable or by specifying -f [path] command line argument.

Interactive user interface

Interactive control over retrace can be exercised using cli control feature over pseudo terminal (currently available on Linux platforms only). In order to enable the feature, export RETRACE_CLI=1 environment variable. When enabled, the name of the pseudo device will be printed with a 3 seconds delay during the start up:

RETRACE-INIT [INFO]: cli pts is at: /dev/pts/1

After that, a terminal emulator can be connected to that device:

minicom -p /dev/pts/1

Hit the main Enter key, and the command menu with prompt will appear:

Welcome to minicom 2.7.1

OPTIONS: I18n
Compiled on Aug 13 2017, 15:25:34.
Port /dev/tty8, 13:10:04

Press CTRL-A Z for help on special keys


Failed to get command id, retry
Retrace command menu
\--------------------
[0] <Main> Say Hi
[1] <Main> Terminate process
Enter command id>>

The following are the characteristics of the terminal:

  • Raw mode - no line processing will be performed on the input.

  • Characters are echoed back.

  • Main enter key is used to mark the end of input.

Note to developers

In order to expose interactive commands from your module, use API defined in retrace_cli.h. To register commads use cli_register_command_blk(). To interact with the user use cli_printf() and cli_scanf(). Refer to retrace_main.c for reference.

Examples

Trace usage example

In its most basic form retrace will just print all calls that are made (and that are supported by retrace):

$ retrace /usr/bin/id
(2051) geteuid();
(2051) getuid();
(2051) getegid();
(2051) getgid();
(2051) fopen("/etc/passwd", "rce"); [3]
(2051) fclose(3);
(2051) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(2051) fclose(3);
(2051) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(2051) fclose(3);
(2051) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(2051) fclose(3);
uid=1000(test) gid=1000(test) groups=1000(test),10(wheel)
(2051) exit(0);
(2051) fileno(1);
(2051) fclose(1);
(2051) fileno(2);
(2051) fclose(2);

Redirect usage example

The power of retrace lies its its ability to modify the behavior of the standard system calls in a number of different ways. This is done using a config file.

An easy example is redirecting the output of the getuid() call:

$ cat retrace.conf
getuid,0
geteuid,0
getegid,0
getgid,0

$ retrace -f retrace.conf /usr/bin/id
(4982) geteuid(); [redirection in effect: '0']
(4982) getuid(); [redirection in effect: '0']
(4982) getegid(); [redirection in effect: '0']
(4982) getgid(); [redirection in effect: '0']
(4982) fopen("/etc/passwd", "rce"); [3]
(4982) fclose(3);
(4982) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(4982) fclose(3);
(4982) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(4982) fclose(3);
(4982) fopen("/etc/group", "rce"); [3]
(4982) fclose(3);
uid=0(root) gid=0(root) groups=0(root)
(4982) exit(0);
(4982) fileno(1);
(4982) fclose(1);
(4982) fileno(2);
(4982) fclose(2);

Config Options

Other useful config file options are listed below.

Connect

connect,127.0.0.1,8080,192.168.1.110,9090

Will redirect a connect() call from 127.0.0.1:8080 to 192.168.1.110:9090.

fopen,/etc/passwd,/tmp/passwd

Will redirect a fopen() call from /etc/passwd to /tmp/passwd.

Logging

logtofile,retrace.log

Will send the log file to a file rather than stderr. You can configure log output to write to /dev/null disable logging completely.

OpenSSL

SSL_get_verify_result,10

Will cause the OpenSSL function SSL_get_verify_result to return any desired value.

Memory Fuzzing

memoryfuzzing,0.05

This option will cause a percentage of malloc(), realloc() and calloc() calls to fail.

The percentage is specified in a number (float) from 0 (no fail) to 1 (all fail). This is useful to discover places in your code where you are not checking the return value of allocators.

The seed of the random generator can be controlled with the fuzzingseed,1498729252 option, so that the results are repeatable.

Incomplete I/O

incompleteio,10

This option will cause the read() / write() calls to randomly write/read less bytes than was asked. A common scenario that people forget to check.

Time tracking

showtimestamp
showcalltime,0.0001

These two options will cause a timestamp (since the beginning of the tracing) to be shown and the time a call took if it’s larger than the specified time in float seconds.

Logging

logging-global,LOG_GROUP_FILE|LOG_GROUP_MEM,RTR_LOG_LEVEL_ALL
logging-excluded-funcs,free|memcpy|malloc
logging-allowed-funcs,strlen
stacktrace-groups,LOG_GROUP_MEM
stacktrace-disabled-funcs,calloc

These options will enable or disable logging options by group or level. The each group, level or function may be combined by | character.

logging-global,[logging group],[logging level]
	groups: LOG_GROUP_ALL,LOG_GROUP_MEM,LOG_GROUP_FILE,LOG_GROUP_NET,LOG_GROUP_SYS,
		LOG_GROUP_STR,LOG_GROUP_SSL,LOG_GROUP_PROC
	levels: LOG_LEVEL_ALL,LOG_LEVEL_NOR,LOG_LEVEL_ERR,LOG_LEVEL_FUZZ,LOG_LEVEL_REDIRECT

logging-excluded-funcs,[functions list]
logging-allowed-funcs,[functions list]
stacktrace-groups,[logging groups]
stacktrace-disabled-funcs,[functions list]

Notes

macOS System Integrity Protection

We use the DYLD_INSERT_LIBRARIES enviroment variable to insert retrace into binaries. Starting on Mac OS X El Capitan Apple removes the DYLD_INSERT_LIBRARIES variable for the enviroment for binaries in system directories. This means you can’t trace system binaries using retrace by default.

You can disable this behaviour by running csrutil disable and rebooting.

Feedback

retrace is under heavy development and we are always looking to implement new and useful features that allows debugging and reverse engineering programs in new and interesting ways.

Please send feedback and improvement suggestions either as GitHub issues or to retrace@ribose.com.

About

retrace is a versatile security vulnerability / bug discovery tool through monitoring and modifying the behavior of compiled binaries on Linux, OpenBSD/FreeBSD/NetBSD (shared object) and macOS (dynamic library).

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