Networking/Computing Tips/Tricks

Just like out article on Network Management Tools (you can read that here), I wanted to compile a list of Networking Utilities and Tools in this article. 

Frankly, this is a bit of challenge as what tools are available depends on operating system, version and such. 

Much also depends on what point of view you have, like security or troubleshooting, as to what tools will be helpful. 

I have tried to categorize the tools without rating them or reviewing them. 

Instead, the focus here is to create a reference list. 

If you feel we have missed something, or know some missing information, please comment below.

Packet Capture/Packet Sniffing/Packet Analysis

I like to start here, as this is a crucial part of troubleshooting networks.  Being able to capture the data networking packets and then analyze conversations is a crucial capability.

Tool Name  Web Site (if avail) Operating System Cost (if avail)
Wireshark https://www.wireshark.org/ ALL Free
Solarwinds https://www.solarwinds.com/   ALL Free to $1500 
Fiddler https://www.telerik.com/fiddler   ALL Free - $12  
TCPDump  https://www.tcpdump.org/ ALL   Free
WinDump (old)  https://www.winpcap.org/windump/  Windows Free 
Kismet (wireless)  https://www.kismetwireless.net/ Linux, OSX   Free
Network Miner https://sectools.org/tool/networkminer/  Windows   Free
Ntop https://www.ntop.org/  ???  Free 
Capsa Free https://www.colasoft.com/capsa-free/   Windows  Free - $995
Net Stumbler (wireless)  https://www.netstumbler.com/ Windows  Free
EtherApe  https://etherape.sourceforge.io/  Linux Free
Microsoft Network Monitor (old, archived)  https://www.microsoft.com/en-us/download/details.aspx?id=4865  Windows Free 
KisMAC (wireless) https://kismac-ng.org/  OSX  Free
Ngrep https://github.com/jpr5/ngrep   ALL Free

 

Custom Packet/Traffic Creation Tools

An interesting capability that the following tools have is to create/craft customized packets and play them into the network.  This is done for several purposes such as testing access policies or even trying to break into a network.

Tool Name  Web Site (if avail) Operating System Cost (if avail)
Scapy  https://scapy.net/  Linux  Free
Hping http://www.hping.org/   ALL Free
Ostinato https://ostinato.org/   ALL $29 - $149
Netcat (old)  http://netcat.sourceforge.net/  Linux, OSX Free
packETH http://packeth.sourceforge.net/packeth/Home.html   Linux Free

 

Network Emulation and Simulation

Most people call these simulators, but they may be technically incorrect.  Simulation is when the program/tool attempts to run like a network device or set of devices.  Emulation is when you use a tool that actually runs the same software or operating system in switches/routers/network devices and creates a virtual environment to connect, test, and learn how these devices interoperate.  Generally speaking, as compute power has gone up we have moved toward emulation.  These tools can create virtual copies and topologies of existing networks allowing you to test and implement changes prior to rolling these changes out into the production network environment.  They are also a great way to learn networking protocols which is why we have used tools like this in our hands on classes since we could first get our hands on them.

Tool Name  Simulator or Emulator Web Site (if avail) Operating System Cost (if avail)
GNS3 Emulator  https://www.gns3.com/  ALL  Free
VIRL Emulator https://learningnetwork.cisco.com/s/virl   Requires VMware $199 Yearly License
Eve-NG Emulator https://www.eve-ng.net/  ALL Free
Packet Tracer Simulator  https://www.netacad.com/courses/packet-tracer  ALL Free with Course 
Huawei eNSP  Simulator https://support.huawei.com/enterprise/en/management-system/ensp-pid-9017384  ??? Free

 

Network/Device Security Audit Programs, Penetration Testing

Network Security Audit Programs are used to check/verify network devices for security vulnerabilities. The programs listed perform these verification tasks but they may be limited.  We urge you to try these tools against your network, and in some cases you may need to use multiple tools.

Tool Name  Web Site (if avail)  Operating System  Cost (if avail) 
Nmap

 https://nmap.org/
My article on getting started with nmap: click here
Deeper scanning with nmap: click here
nmap scripting engine usage: click here
 
Zenmap - the nmap GUI: click here

 ALL Free
Nessus  https://www.tenable.com/products/nessus  ALL Free - Subscription
Netsparker https://www.netsparker.com/   ??? $$ 
Nipper  https://www.titania.com/products/nipper/  Windows, Linux Free Trial, $$
OpenVAS  https://www.openvas.org/ Requires VirtualBox, runs as an appliance  Free Trial
Core Impact Pro https://www.coresecurity.com/products/core-impact   ??? ???
SoftPerfect Network Scanner  https://www.softperfect.com/products/networkscanner/  Windows, OSX Free Trial 
Retina (old) https://www.beyondtrust.com/vulnerability-management  ???  ???
Qualys FreeScan  https://www.qualys.com/  Web Based Free Trial

 

Intrution Detection Systems

Intrusion Detection System software is used to detect an ongoing attack attempt on your network or network devices and provide logging and/or alarms as well as blocking capabilities.

 Tool Name  Web Site (if avail)  Operating System  Cost (if avail) 
IPCop  http://www.ipcop.org/  Linux Free
Snort https://www.snort.org/   Linux $29.99 and up 
Security Onion  https://securityonion.net/ Linux   Free


Web Security Tools

So many applications are really web based applications today.  These applications run on servers, and Web Security Tools will test these applications to ensure they are secure preventing would be attackers/hackers from gaining unauthorized access to your systems and database.  Further we need to test and verify TCP and UDP.

Tool Name   Web Site (if avail)   Operating System Cost (if avail) 
iPerf/iPerf3  https://iperf.fr/ ALL Free
Burp Suite  https://portswigger.net/burp  ??? Free Trial
Nikto2 https://cirt.net/Nikto2  Linux  Free
Ratproxy (old) https://code.google.com/archive/p/ratproxy/  ??? ???
Samurai Web Testing Framework http://www.samurai-wtf.org/   Linux ???
Websecurify  https://websecurify.com/  ??? ???

 

We hope this list is useful and helpful.  If you think something is missing, or you can answer some of the ??? unknowns, please let me know in the comments below. 

Be sure to come back often as we intend to update this page.  Thanks in advance for your support and help. 

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