Inhale - A Malware Analysis And Classification Tool

Inhale is a malware analysis and classification tool that is capable of automating and scaling many static analysis operations.
This is the beta release version, for testing purposes, feedback, and community development.

Inhale started as a series of small scripts that I used when collecting and analyzing a large amount of malware from diverse sources. There are plenty of frameworks and tools for doing similar work, but none of them really matched my work flow of quickly finding, classifying, and storing information about a large number of files. Some also require expensive API keys and other services that cost money.
I ended up turning these scripts into something that people can quickly set up and use, whether you run from a research server, a laptop, or a low cost computer like a Raspberry Pi.

This tool is built to run on Linux using Python3, ElasticSearch, radare2, yara and binwalk. jq is also needed to pretty print output from the database. Here are some of the basic instructions to install.

Install requirements
python3 -m pip install -r requirements.txt

Installing ElasticSearch (Debian)
wget -qO - https://artifacts.elastic.co/GPG-KEY-elasticsearch | sudo apt-key add -
sudo apt-get install apt-transport-https
echo "deb https://artifacts.elastic.co/packages/7.x/apt stable main" | sudo tee -a /etc/apt/sources.list.d/elastic-7.x.list
sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install elasticsearch
sudo service elasticsearch start
You can also install manually by following this documentation
Additionally you can set up a full ELK stack for visualization and data analysis purposes. It is not necessary for using this tool.

Installing radare2
It's important to install radare2 from the repo, and not your package manager. Package manager versions don't come with all the bells and whistles required for inhale.
git clone https://github.com/radare/radare2
cd radare2

Installing Yara
sudo apt-get install automake libtool make gcc
wget https://github.com/VirusTotal/yara/archive/v3.10.0.tar.gz
tar xvzf v3.10.0.tar.gz
cd yara-3.10.0/
sudo make install
If you get any errors about shared objects, try this to fix it.
sudo sh -c 'echo "/usr/local/lib" >> /etc/ld.so.conf'
sudo ldconfig

Installing binwalk
It's most likely best to simply install binwalk from the repo.
git clone https://github.com/ReFirmLabs/binwalk
cd binwalk
sudo python3 setup.py install
More information on installing additional features for binwalk is located here.

Specify the file you are scraping by type:
-f infile    
-d directory
-u url
-r recursive url
Other options:
-t TAGS        Additional Tags
-b Turn off binwalk signatures with this flag
-y YARARULES Custom Yara Rules
-o OUTDIR Store scraped files in specific output dir (default:./files/<date>/)
-i Just print info, don't add files to database

Running inhale.py will perform all of the analysis on a given file/directory/url and print it to your terminal.
View info on /bin/ls, but don't add to the database
python3 inhale.py -f /bin/ls -i 
Add directory 'malwarez' to database
python3 inhale.py -d malwarez
Download this file and add to the database
python3 inhale.py -u https://thugcrowd.com/chal/skull
Download everything in this remote directory, tag it all as "phishing":
python3 inhale.py -r http://someurl.com/opendir/ -t phishing
PROTIP: Use this Twitter hashtag search to find interesting open directories that possibly contain malware. Use at your own risk.

You can pass your own yara rules with -y, this is a huge work in progress and almost everything in "YaraRules" is from https://github.com/kevthehermit/PasteHunter/tree/master/YaraRules. Shoutout @KevTheHermit

Querying the Database
Use db.sh to query (Soon to be a nice script)
db.sh *something* | jq .

Data Model
The following is the current data model used for the elasticsearch database. Not every one of these will be used for every given file. Any r2_* tags are typically reserved for binaries of some sort.
Name Description
filename The full path of the binary
file_ext The file extension
filesize The file size
filetype Filetype based on magic value. Not as reliable as binwalk signatures.
md5 The files MD5 hash
sha1 The files SHA1 hash
sha256 The files SHA256 hash
added The date the file was added
r2_arch Architecture of the binary file
r2_baddr The binary's base address
r2_binsz The size of the program code
r2_bits Architecture bits - 8/16/32/64 etc.
r2_canary Whether or not stack canaries are enabled
r2_class Binary Class
r2_compiled The date that the binary was compiled
r2_dbg_file The debug file of the binary
r2_intrp The interpreter that the binary calls if dynamically linked
r2_lang The language of the source code
r2_lsyms Whether or not there are debug symbols
r2_machine The machine type, usually means the CPU the binary is for
r2_os The OS that the machine is supposed to run on
r2_pic Whether or not there is Position Independent Code
r2_relocs Whether or not there are relocations
r2_rpath The run-time search path - if applicable
r2_stripped Whether or not the binary is stripped
r2_subsys The binary's subsystem
r2_format The binary format
r2_iorw Whether ioctl calls are present
r2_type The binary type, whether or not it's an executable, shared object etc.
yara Contains a list of yara matches
binwalk Contains a list of binwalk signatures and their locations in the binary
tags Any user defined tags passed with the -t flag.
url The origin url if a file was remotely downloaded
urls Any URLs that have been pulled from the binary

Solutions to Issues
There are some known issues with this project (mainly to do with versions from package managers), and here I will track anything that has a solution for it.

ElasticSearch index field limit
If you get an error like this:
elasticsearch.exceptions.RequestError: RequestError(400, 'illegal_argument_exception', 'Limit of total fields [1000] in index [inhaled] has been exceeded')
You may have an older version of elasticSearch. You can upgrade, or you can increase the fields limit with this one liner.
curl -XPUT 'localhost:9200/inhaled/_settings' -H 'Content-Type: application/json' -d'{ "index" : { "mapping" : { "total_fields" : { "limit" : "100000" }}}}'

Future Features
  • Re-doing the bot plugin for Discord / Matrix
  • Additional binary analysis features - pulling import/export tables, hashing of specific structures in the header, logging all strings etc.
  • Checking if the file is the database before adding. This feature was removed previously due to specific issues with older versions of ES.
  • Configuration options for requests such as: user agent, timeout, proxy etc.
  • Dockerization of this entire project.

PRs are welcome! If you want to give specific feedback, you can also DM me @netspooky on Twitter.

I'd like to thank everyone who helped to test this tool with me. I'd also like to thank Plazmaz for doing an initial sweep of the code to make it a bit neater.
Greetz to: hermit, plazmaz, nux, x0, dustyfresh, aneilan, sshell, readme, dnz, notdan, rqu, specters, nullcookies, ThugCrowd, and everyone involved with ThreatLand and the TC Safari Zone.

Disqus Comments