Drive Badger: open source platform for covert data exfiltration operations, ranging from small computers to big servers.

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Overview

This page describes lists some hardware-related problems, that affect more than 1 brand.

Some of these problems affect Dell hardware, but not only - if you have problem particularly with Dell, go through this page and the linked one.

Problems with LUKS encryption

These hardware models don't work with LUKS-encrypted Kali Linux persistent partitions (see details):

  • Acer Aspire One D270
  • Asus Eee Box B202
  • Dell OptiPlex FX160
  • Fit-PC2 by CompuLab
  • HP ThinClient T5740 (affects only older firmware "T5000 series")

Solution: use a separate Drive Badger USB drive, with unencrypted persistent partition (32-bit version only, since all these models are 32-bit). Don't forget to read Emergency procedure for your own safety.

Problems with booting from USB 3.0 port

These models have USB 3.0 ports, but without booting functionality:

  • Acer Aspire ES1-131
  • Dell PowerEdge T-series, eg. T310 (depending on firmware version)
  • Dell PowerEdge R-series made at least before 2012, eg. R710
  • HP Microserver G8
  • Sandy Bridge motherboards with Asmedia 104x USB controllers (or similar, eg. Asus P8H67-M PRO)

Solution: boot Drive Badger from USB 2.0 port. Make sure that you use UASP-enabled USB device, otherwise data transfer will be very slow.

My computer freezes just before shutdown/reboot

Automatic hardware shutdown or reboot relies on receiving proper ACPI events from the operating system. This may fail, if:

  • OS don't have proper drivers installed
  • OS runs in ACPI-disabled mode (Linux "acpi=off" - used eg. to avoid problems with Noveau Xorg driver on computers with Nvidia+Intel dual graphics)
  • Windows Update is installing updates that require reboot, and there was no reboot since last Intel drivers update
  • Windows Update has just installed some specific update that breaks ACPI until reboot (this mostly affects very recent hardware - but not always)

Solutions:

  • if this happens from time to time and mostly after installing updates, you can't do anything else except manually pushing Power button to force hardware shutdown, and again to power on again
  • if this happens each shutdown/reboot, try to reinstall all Intel drivers
  • if reinstalling drivers didn't help, this may be a hardware failure, or conflict with some other driver - you can check it by trying to move the OS drive to a different computer (with different CPU/motherboard, graphics card etc.)

Kali Linux shows black screen instead of booting

This is a very common problem, affecting computers with certain graphics cards: the whole screen is black and there is no blue boot menu.

Solution is hardware-specific:

  • try to disable graphics accelerator card in BIOS settings, switching to integrated graphics card
  • try to manipulate available graphics modes available in BIOS
  • try to enable Intel VT in BIOS (on some Asus/Gigabyte motherboards)
  • if this happens on VirtualBox, check if the VM settings are compatible with Kali (it simply re-add it using settings for Ubuntu)
  • check if Ctrl+Alt+F2 keyboard combination works on black screen

Don't forget to restore previous settings after finishing exfiltration.

My LUKS password doesn't work, but I'm 100% sure it's valid

There are 3 common reasons for that:

  • password stopped working at some later point? keyboard layout set in OS doesn't match physical keys layout
  • for country-specific keyboards with additional keys: physical keys layout doesn't match the generic keyboard layout
  • for laptops: "function" mode is enabled

Example keyboard with german physical keys layout:

Solutions:

  • check if replacing "Z" and "Y" is enough - it's the most common difference between various keyboard layouts
  • replace the current keyboard with standard 101-keys PC USB keyboard
  • change your keyboard settings at OS level - use standard US keyboard layout
  • on laptops, try to look closer on key descriptions for alternate meanings, and try to enter these keys while holding "function" key (often located between left CTRL and left ALT)

From the founder...

Being in IT security business for almost 25 years, I realized, that breaking protections (or preventing it) is becoming less and less important. We are not living in Outlook Express times anymore...
The key point is the ability to keep the privileges permanent, once obtained. This becomes more and more difficult, as IT systems get more and more complicated - and this is exactly the goal of Drive Badger project: to give non-ITSEC people the ability to keep either the privileges, or the outcome of the successful break-in.