Hack The Box: Inception

Updated March 30th 2020

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Walkthrough for Inception - Hack The Box

Inception -

Target Enumeration:


User: 4a8bc2d686d093f3f8ad1b37b191303c

Root: 8d1e2e91de427a6fc1a9dc309d563359

Exploiting the host:


Squid is open so may need that later

Dirb brought back nothing useful

Very long page source on default website and at the bottom we find :

Checking the /dompdf location we find a version and an applicable exploit

Looks like we can read files from the filesystem:

Build the following request and request it in burp

Decode only the base64 string

Now we have a user and the etc passwd file.

Search around for interesting files:

Ensure you decode the results ctrl + shift + b

Grab the webdav passwd

Crack that with john

Now we need to find the webdav dir so check the original file:

Now cadaver to webdav_test_injection

We can upload a shell but cannot access it unless we are authenticated. Try to use squid to access the file remotely which does not work, instead upload a php reverse shell and a simple backdoor just incase we cant get a shell back

The reverse shell does not work but the simple one does.

Now we have command execution:

Enumerating the system we see that ssh is open

Not possible to get a shell back at this point which suggests a firewall stopping outbound connections so sent this command over to the repeater for further enumeration.

Seeing as we cannot use wget etc to upload/ download anything upload linenum via cadaver and execute with our simple php shell

Script has run

WP config looks interesting

Read this with the LFI we found earlier.

Now we have a mysql password but no mysql running.


Port 22 is open locally so perhaps we need to access that via squid proxy:

Configure proxychains as follows:

Login with the credentials you have found

Sudo su gives you root with the same password

However the root flag is hidden.

Looking at the ip tells us we may be inside a vm

Find the gateway and scan it with Nmap which reveals tftp is open.

Upload all of the following scripts via tftp to the gateway and wait around 5 minutes to get a proper shell on inception


Waiting for the new crontab to run:

Collect your flag