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You might recall that I commented earlier that many of the tools are complimentary in nature. Other key information available to you would be the operating system itself, the specific build number, and what service pack was installed, if any. I can imagine that this tool would get a fair amount of use by malicious hackers who have gained a presence on a computer. After all, it is not as if the majority of attackers get an explorer. Notify me of follow-up comments by email. We saw earlier that pskill will kill a process for you, however, this tool can do much more than simply kill something. You can download them from here.

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Windows folder already set in PATH and it has appropriate permissions that protecting executables, so no need to mess with it too and it will automatically applied to all users with the same permissions as any other system programs.

A quick check of this tool’s output on that person’s computer psrools help the sys admin find the fault that much quicker. This program will give pstopls a list of exactly what is running on the computer you invoke it on. If you recall, what pslist will do for you is to give a listing of all running processes.

Have you ever been sitting there at your computer working away diligently only to see a little window pop up saying that the computer was going to shutdown in X amount of seconds? Now the tools that are included in the PsTools suite are liked by both hackers and sys admins for several reasons. There is a lot of excellent freeware tools out there to be had.


What it will allow you to do is close the file psotols is being viewed remotely if you so choose.

PsTools Tutorial for System Administrators

Though an attacker may not want to make such an obvious change, the option does exist. Conversely as well, the system pztools can also make use of this tool’s output as well.

Bearing these thoughts in mind, it is likely a good idea to use these tools in a controlled lab environment to see how they work, and just what or why you would use them for.

Ste 1, fellow IT Pros are already on-board, don’t est left out! Post as a guest Name. In an effort to give context to the usage of some of these tools I shall use them after having obtained system level access to a computer here in my lab.

Let’s take a look at the screenshot below to see if anything bubbles up idea wise. Use quotation marks if needed, e. The remote use of this tool is likely one of the reasons why a hacker would like it.

A fairly good reason pstlols reboot a computer would be if you had broken into it via an exploit and wanted to safeguard that computer. If it has not then that computer would be ripe for exploitation via a specific vector. Notify me of new posts by email.

Your email address will not be published. This tool will allow you to both list and control the services on not only the local, but also the remote computer. From that list a person with malicious intent may decide to kill a process that would hamper their plans. When I think of command line tools I immediately think of mischief. We have Mark Russinovich and Dave Sef of Sysinternals to thank for in this case, as it is they who developed a wide selection of freeware tools called PsTools.


That administrator would prompt me to disconnect immediately and come back at a later time. If you omit username the remote process will run in the same account from which you execute PsExec, but because the remote process is impersonating it will not have access to network resources on the remote system.

Installing psexec to C:\Windows vs another folder – Super User

Remember attacks don’t have to be at the cutting edge to work. We see in the screenshot that the way to invoke psloglist is simple enough, simply type ppstools in and hit enter.

The information contained sft an event log can be of interest to a sys admin obviously, and also the malicious hacker. Trying to log in as administrator the next day only to find out your password doesn’t work would be a nasty shock indeed. Let’s take a look at the screenshot below.

Should you wish to see an example of such a trojan then please give this article series a read. Give the below noted screenshot a look.

PsTools Tutorial for System Administrators

Input is passed to the remote system when you press the enter key – typing Ctrl-C will terminate the remote process. Within it we can clearly see the various options for psservice. If you kill a PsExec process, you might also need to manually remove the background service: