Posts Tagged ‘script kiddie’

Linux: /var/log/wtmp – No such file or directory quick fix and why it might be missing on a server

Thursday, May 4th, 2017


If you have to occasionally log  into some client old inherited (not installed by you) Linux servers on and just out of curiosity and for security sake dediced do a quick security (last user login) evaluation, e.g. issued the
last command just to find out you get the error:

last: /var/log/wtmp: No such file or directory

Perhaps this file was removed by the operator to prevent logging last info.

Then this might be a sure indicator that some malicious script kiddie (hax0r) activity has been run over the server or the ex-system administrator if fired recently decided to wipe out all his login tracks among with installing some other nasty rootkit or backdoor.

Under some circumstances the error might be caused also by badly written end user rotate script bugs (like shell or perl script) bugs or by a buggy deployment of Linux OS virtual machine.
The last: /var/log/wtmp: No such file or directory error is likely to happen on Ubuntu / Debian / Redhat / CentOS Linux distributions running on a Cloud PaaS service such as Amazon EC2, some of the Cloud services vendors do choose to explicitly remove /var/log/wtmp for the reason that many of end customers are using their Linux VM servers (Xen Virtualization / OpenVZ / LXC – Linux Containers) etc. irresponsibly and hence become a victim of script kiddie attacks and the failed logins attempts logged in /var/log/wtmp grow to many gigabytes.

Even some Linux distributions or system administrators of Linux server login hosts that has to keep tens of thousands of  login records monthly or are concentrating on simplicity and on an attempt to reduce size has purposefully deleted the last login entry file /var/log/wtmp file to save space.

But anyways if you happen to be missing this file always bear in mind that you might have been a victim of intrusion and you better run chkrootkit and rkhunter

Run below commands to fix the missing /var/log/wtmp

touch /var/log/wtmp
chmod 0664 /var/log/wtmp
chown root:utmp /var/log/wtmp

On some Linux distributions such as Ubuntu and Fedora you might also want to create /var/log/btmp (which is used to log failed login attempts to server)

touch /var/log/btmp
chmod 0664 /var/log/btmp
chown root:utmp /var/log/btmp

Once the files are created the last command will start logging server in logins and logouts as it is supposed to be again, e.g.:

linux:~# last -15
root pts/0 Fri May 5 16:41 still logged in

This article was inspired by a prior article found on the site is in Bulgarian so unfortunately you might not be able to read it, but as a content and concept it is pretty similar to, actually the site author Nikolay Nikolov (known in Internet Relay Chat IRC under the pseudonym Joni-B, happened to be an old friend from youth geek IT years 🙂


Maldetect – Malware web content file scanner for GNU / Linux – Keep your hosting servers Malware clean

Tuesday, June 4th, 2013

Linux malware detect scan for malware from commandline / Fedora, CentOS, Debian, Ubuntu 

It is so common nowadays that Shared hosting clients upload PHP / Javascript / Ajax scripts carelessly downloaded from somewhere containing malicious features or infected by third party script kiddie tools which replicate themselves after succesfully exploit some common PHP or Perl vulnerability. I'm sure even as time of writing this post probably millions of old un-updated Hosting Linux servers are silent Malware hives.
Therefore For Shared Hosting server servers it is useful to know about the existence of Maldetect – Linux Malware scanner also known under the name LMD.

Linux Maldetect – in what it does is very similar to Windows good Spyware Detect and Clean tool Malware Bytes. LMD uses Spyware definition database collected from network edge Intrusion detection systems who caught Web bugs commonly exploited as well as from custom user submissions of Malicious stuff. Maldetect's database can easily be exported and plays well together with ClamAV antivirus. LMD is very precious and is one of the must have outfits for hosting admins, as its use allows you to determine succesful cracking before system is rootkited and you have to audit for Backdoors or Rookit with rkhunter and chkroot

1. Install Linux MalDetect

LMD is young project so it does not still have a package deb and rpm package builds. Installation is done from source;

debian:~# wget
debian:~# tar -xzf maldetect-current.tar.gz
debian:~# cd maldetect-*
debian:~# ./

Linux Malware Detect v1.4.1
            (C) 2002-2013, R-fx Networks <>
            (C) 2013, Ryan MacDonald <>
inotifywait (C) 2007, Rohan McGovern <>
This program may be freely redistributed under the terms of the GNU GPL

installation completed to /usr/local/maldetect
config file: /usr/local/maldetect/conf.maldet
exec file: /usr/local/maldetect/maldet
exec link: /usr/local/sbin/maldet
exec link: /usr/local/sbin/lmd
cron.daily: /etc/cron.daily/maldet

maldet(3143): {sigup} performing signature update check…
maldet(3143): {sigup} local signature set is version 201205035915
maldet(3143): {sigup} new signature set (2013060217799) available
maldet(3143): {sigup} downloaded
maldet(3143): {sigup} downloaded
maldet(3143): {sigup} downloaded
maldet(3143): {sigup} downloaded
maldet(3143): {sigup} downloaded
maldet(3143): {sigup} signature set update completed
maldet(3143): {sigup} 11509 signatures (9641 MD5 / 1868 HEX)

2. Maldetect configs and binaries

Config is default installed in –  /usr/local/maldetect/conf.maldet
Main executed binary is placed in –  /usr/local/maldetect/maldet
There is a cron skele file placed in /etc/cron.daily/maldet. Its useful to run maldet via cron to check all sites on server and get e-mail reports.

3. Keep maldet up2date

debian:~# maldet --update-ver

Linux Malware Detect v1.4.2
            (C) 2002-2013, R-fx Networks <>
            (C) 2013, Ryan MacDonald <>
inotifywait (C) 2007, Rohan McGovern <>
This program may be freely redistributed under the terms of the GNU GPL v2

maldet(3511): {update} checking for available updates...
maldet(3511): {update} hashing install files and checking against server...
maldet(3511): {update} latest version already installed.

4. Update Maldetect definitions manually

Maldetect Malware definitions are designed to auto-update via cron. For people who don't like to waste CPU time and scrape on HDD with cronjob;

debian:~# maldet --update

5. Configure LMD

Tune according to your needs in config (/usr/local/maldetect/conf.maldet)

email_subj="Attention Malware found! Check your server!"

6. Scanning for Malware manually

debian:~# maldet -a /home,/var/www/blog,/sbin,/opt
Linux Malware Detect v1.4.2
(C) 2002-2013, R-fx Networks <>
(C) 2013, Ryan MacDonald <>
inotifywait (C) 2007, Rohan McGovern <>
This program may be freely redistributed under the terms of the GNU GPL v2

maldet(21709): {scan} signatures loaded: 11509 (9641 MD5 / 1868 HEX)
maldet(21709): {scan} building file list for /var/www/blog, this might take awhile...
maldet(21709): {scan} file list completed, found 6814 files...
maldet(21709): {scan} found ClamAV clamscan binary, using as scanner engine...
maldet(21709): {scan} scan of /var/www/blog (6814 files) in progress...

maldet(21709): {scan} scan completed on /var/www/blog: files 6814, malware hits 0, cleaned hits 0
maldet(21709): {scan} scan report saved, to view run: maldet --report 062813-1012.21709

As you see from above output  you can view Maldet report by issuing:

debian:~# maldet --report 062813-1012.21709

malware detect scan report for pcfreak:

SCAN ID: 070113-1223.7481

TIME: Jul  1 12:24:20 +0300





NOTE: quarantine is disabled! set quar_hits=1 in conf.maldet or to quarantine results run:

debian:~# maldet -q 070113-1223.7481


{CAV}Exploit.SafariCrash-1 : ./osX/dos/1715.html

{CAV}Exploit.PPC : ./osX/local/

{CAV}Exploit.Perl.Sadmin : ./solaris/remote/

{CAV}Exploit.FirefoxCrash : ./multiple/dos/1716.html

{HEX}exp.linux.setuid.13 : ./multiple/local/

{CAV}HTML.Shellcode : ./multiple/remote/2082.html


In case some badware is captured by Maldet to quarantine files run suggested command:

debian:~# maldet -q 070113-1223.7481

Linux Malware Detect v1.4.2

            (C) 2002-2013, R-fx Networks <>

            (C) 2013, Ryan MacDonald <>

inotifywait (C) 2007, Rohan McGovern <>

This program may be freely redistributed under the terms of the GNU GPL v2


maldet(21341): {quar} malware quarantined from './php/remote/2008.php' to '/usr/local/maldetect/quarantine/2008.php.19608'

maldet(21341): {clean} restoring /usr/local/maldetect/quarantine/2008.php.19608 for cleaning attempt

maldet(21341): {clean} trying to clean ./php/remote/2008.php with base64.inject.unclassed rule

maldet(21341): {clean} rescanning ./php/remote/2008.php for malware hits

maldet(21341): {clean} clean successful on ./php/remote/2008.php


Just for a close up below is a list of common 60 Malwares found on Hosting servers (taken from Maldetect Website);

base64.inject.unclassed     perl.ircbot.xscan
bin.dccserv.irsexxy         perl.mailer.yellsoft
bin.ircbot.php3             php.cmdshell.c100
bin.ircbot.unclassed        php.cmdshell.c99
bin.pktflood.ABC123         php.cmdshell.cih
bin.pktflood.osf            php.cmdshell.egyspider
bin.trojan.linuxsmalli      php.cmdshell.fx29
c.ircbot.tsunami            php.cmdshell.ItsmYarD
exp.linux.rstb              php.cmdshell.Ketemu
exp.linux.unclassed         php.cmdshell.N3tshell
exp.setuid0.unclassed       php.cmdshell.r57
gzbase64.inject             php.cmdshell.unclassed
html.phishing.auc61         php.defash.buno          php.exe.globals
perl.connback.DataCha0s     php.include.remote
perl.connback.N2            php.ircbot.InsideTeam
perl.cpanel.cpwrap          php.ircbot.lolwut
perl.ircbot.atrixteam       php.ircbot.sniper
perl.ircbot.bRuNo           php.ircbot.vj_denie
perl.ircbot.Clx             php.mailer.10hack
perl.ircbot.devil           php.mailer.bombam
perl.ircbot.fx29            php.mailer.PostMan
perl.ircbot.magnum          php.phishing.AliKay
perl.ircbot.oldwolf         php.phishing.mrbrain
perl.ircbot.putr4XtReme     php.phishing.ReZulT
perl.ircbot.rafflesia       php.pktflood.oey