Difference between pages "Forensic Live CD issues" and "Plaso"

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== The problem ==
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{{Infobox_Software |
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  name = plaso |
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  maintainer = [[Kristinn Gudjonsson]], [[Joachim Metz]] |
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  os = [[Linux]], [[Mac OS X]], [[Windows]] |
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  genre = {{Analysis}} |
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  license = {{APL}} |
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  website = [https://code.google.com/p/plaso/ code.google.com/p/plaso/] |
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}}
  
[[Tools#Forensics_Live_CDs | Forensic Linux Live CD distributions]] are widely used during computer forensic investigations. Currently, many vendors of such Live CD distributions spread false claims that their distributions "do not touch anything", "write protect everything" and so on. Community-developed distributions are not exception here, unfortunately. Finally, it turns out that many forensic Linux Live CD distributions are not tested properly and there are no suitable test cases developed.
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Plaso (plaso langar að safna öllu) is the Python based back-end engine used by tools such as log2timeline for automatic creation of a super timelines. The goal of log2timeline (and thus plaso) is to provide a single tool that can parse various log files and forensic artifacts from computers and related systems, such as network equipment to produce a single correlated timeline. This timeline can then be easily analysed by forensic investigators/analysts, speeding up investigations by correlating the vast amount of information found on an average computer system. Plaso is intended to be applied for creating super timelines but also supports creating [http://blog.kiddaland.net/2013/02/targeted-timelines-part-i.html targeted timelines].
  
== Another side of the problem ==
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The Plaso project site also provides [[4n6time]], formerly "l2t_Review", which is a cross-platform forensic tool for timeline creation and review by [[David Nides]].
  
Another side of the problem of insufficient testing of forensic Live CD distributions is that many users do not know what happens "under the hood" of such distributions and cannot adequately test them.
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== Supported Formats ==
  
=== Example ===
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=== Storage Media Image File Formats ===
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Storage Medis Image File Format support is provided by [[dfvfs]].
  
For example, [http://forensiccop.blogspot.com/2009/10/forensic-cop-journal-13-2009.html ''Forensic Cop Journal'' (Volume 1(3), Oct 2009)] describes a test case when an Ext3 file system was mounted using "-o ro" mount flag as a way to write protect the data. The article says that all tests were successful (i.e. no data modification was found after unmounting the file system), but it is known that damaged (i.e not properly unmounted) Ext3 file systems cannot be write protected using only "-o ro" mount flags (write access will be enabled during file system recovery).
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=== Volume System Formats ===
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Volume System Format support is provided by [[dfvfs]].
  
And the question is: will many users test damaged Ext3 file system (together with testing the clean one) when validating their favourite forensic Live CD distribution? My answer is "no", because many users are unaware of such traits.
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=== File System Formats ===
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File System Format support is provided by [[dfvfs]].
  
== Problems ==
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=== File formats ===
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<b>TODO expand this list</b>
  
Here is a list of common problems of forensic Linux Live CD distributions that can be used by developers and users for testing purposes. Each problem is followed by an up to date list of distributions affected.
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* Apple System Log (ASL)
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* Basic Security Module (BSM)
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* Bencode files
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* [[Google Chrome|Chrome cache files]]
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* [[Extensible Storage Engine (ESE) Database File (EDB) format]] using [[libesedb]]
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* [[Internet Explorer History File Format]] (also known as MSIE 4 - 9 Cache Files or index.dat) using [[libmsiecf]]
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* [[OLE Compound File]] using [[libolecf]]
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* [[Property list (plist)|Property list (plist) format]] using [[binplist]]
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* SQLite databases
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* Syslog
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* [[Windows Event Log (EVT)]] using [[libevt]]
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* [[Windows NT Registry File (REGF)]] using [[libregf]]
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* [[LNK|Windows Shortcut File (LNK) format]] using [[liblnk]]
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* [[Windows XML Event Log (EVTX)]] using [[libevtx]]
  
=== Journaling file systems updates ===
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=== Bencode file formats ===
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* Transmission
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* uTorrent
  
When mounting (and unmounting) several journaling file systems with only "-o ro" mount flag a different number of data writes may occur. Here is a list of such file systems:
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=== ESE database file formats ===
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* Internet Explorer WebCache format
  
{| class="wikitable" border="1"
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=== OLE Compound File formats ===
|-
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* Document summary information
File system
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* Summary information (top-level only)
!  When data writes happen
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!  Notes
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|-
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|  Ext3
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|  File system requires journal recovery
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|  To disable recovery: use "noload" flag, or use "ro,loop" flags, or use "ext2" file system type
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|-
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|  Ext4
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|  File system requires journal recovery
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|  To disable recovery: use "noload" flag, or use "ro,loop" flags, or use "ext2" file system type
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|-
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|  ReiserFS
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|  File system has unfinished transactions
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|  "nolog" flag does not work (see ''man mount''). To disable journal updates: use "ro,loop" flags
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|-
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|  XFS
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|  Always
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|  "norecovery" flag does not help. To disable data writes: use "ro,loop" flags. The bug was fixed in recent 2.6 kernels.
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|}
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Incorrect mount flags can be used to mount a file system on evidentiary media during the boot process or during the file system preview process. As described above, this may result in data writes to evidentiary media. For example, several Ubuntu-based forensic Linux Live CD distributions mount Ext3/4 file systems on fixed media (e.g. hard drives) during execution of [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Initrd ''initrd''] scripts (these scripts mount every supported file system type on every supported media type using only "-o ro" flag in order to find a root file system image).
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=== Property list (plist) formats ===
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<b>TODO expand this list</b>
  
[[Image:ext3 recovery.png|thumb|right|[[Helix3]]: damaged Ext3 recovery during the boot]]
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=== SQLite database file formats ===
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* Android call logs
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* Android SMS
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* Chrome cookies
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* Chrome browsing and downloads history
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* Firefox browsing and downloads history
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* Google Drive
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* Launch services quarantine events
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* MacKeeper
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* Mac OS X document versions
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* Skype
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* Zeitgeist activity
  
List of distributions that recover Ext3 (and sometimes Ext4) file systems during the boot:
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=== Windows Registry formats ===
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<b>TODO expand this list</b>
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* AppCompatCache
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* CCleaner
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* MountPoints2
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* MSIE Zone
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* MSIE Zone Software
  
{| class="wikitable" border="1"
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== History ==
|-
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Plaso is a Python-based rewrite of the Perl-based [[log2timeline]] initially created by [[Kristinn Gudjonsson]]. Plaso builds upon the [[SleuthKit]], [[libyal]] and other projects.
!  Distribution
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!  Version
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|-
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|  Helix3
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|  2009R1
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|-
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|  SMART Linux (Ubuntu)
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|  2010-01-20
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|-
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|  FCCU GNU/Linux Forensic Boot CD
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|  12.1
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|-
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|  SPADA
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|  4
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|}
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=== Root file system spoofing ===
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== See Also ==
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* [[dfvfs]]
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* [[log2timeline]]
  
Most Ubuntu-based forensic Live CD distributions use Casper (set of scripts used to complete initialization process during early stage of boot). Casper is responsible for searching for a root file system (typically, an image of live environment) on all supported devices (because a bootloader does not pass any information about device used for booting to the kernel), mounting it and executing ''/sbin/init'' program on a mounted root file system that will continue the boot process. Unfortunately, Casper was not designed to meet computer forensics requirements and is responsible for damaged Ext3/4 file systems recovery during the boot (see above) and root file system spoofing.
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== External Links ==
 
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* [https://code.google.com/p/plaso/ Project site]
[[Image:Grml.png|thumb|right|[[grml]] mounted root file system from the [[hard drive]]]]
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* [https://sites.google.com/a/kiddaland.net/plaso/home Project documentation]
 
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* [http://blog.kiddaland.net/ Project blog]
Currently, Casper may select fake root file system image on evidentiary media (e.g. [[HDD]]), because there are no authenticity checks performed (except optional UUID check for a possible live file system), and this fake root file system image may be used to execute malicious code during the boot with root privileges. Knoppix-based forensic Live CD distributions are vulnerable to the same attack.
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* [https://sites.google.com/a/kiddaland.net/plaso/usage/4n6time 4n6time]
 
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List of Ubuntu-based distributions that allow root file system spoofing:
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{| class="wikitable" border="1"
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|-
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!  Distribution
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!  Version
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!  Notes
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|-
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|  Helix3
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|  2009R1
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|
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|-
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|  Helix3 Pro
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|  2009R3
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|
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|-
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|  CAINE
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|  1.5
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|
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|-
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|  DEFT Linux
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|  5
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|
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|-
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|  Raptor
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|  20091026
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|
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|-
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|  grml
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|  2009.10
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|  Actually, [[grml]] uses live-initramfs scripts (Casper fork)
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|-
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|  BackTrack
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|  4
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|
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|-
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|  SMART Linux (Ubuntu)
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|  2010-01-20
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|
+
|-
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|  FCCU GNU/Linux Forensic Boot CD
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|  12.1
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|
+
|}
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Vulnerable Knoppix-based distributions include: SPADA, LinEn boot CD, BitFlare.
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=== Swap space activation ===
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=== Incorrect automount policy ===
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=== Incorrect write-blocking approach ===
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== See also ==
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* [http://www.computer-forensics-lab.org/pdf/Linux_for_computer_forensic_investigators_2.pdf Linux for computer forensic investigators: problems of booting trusted operating system]
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* [http://www.computer-forensics-lab.org/pdf/Linux_for_computer_forensic_investigators.pdf Linux for computer forensic investigators: «pitfalls» of mounting file systems]
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Revision as of 02:35, 3 June 2014

plaso
Maintainer: Kristinn Gudjonsson, Joachim Metz
OS: Linux, Mac OS X, Windows
Genre: Analysis
License: APL
Website: code.google.com/p/plaso/

Plaso (plaso langar að safna öllu) is the Python based back-end engine used by tools such as log2timeline for automatic creation of a super timelines. The goal of log2timeline (and thus plaso) is to provide a single tool that can parse various log files and forensic artifacts from computers and related systems, such as network equipment to produce a single correlated timeline. This timeline can then be easily analysed by forensic investigators/analysts, speeding up investigations by correlating the vast amount of information found on an average computer system. Plaso is intended to be applied for creating super timelines but also supports creating targeted timelines.

The Plaso project site also provides 4n6time, formerly "l2t_Review", which is a cross-platform forensic tool for timeline creation and review by David Nides.

Supported Formats

Storage Media Image File Formats

Storage Medis Image File Format support is provided by dfvfs.

Volume System Formats

Volume System Format support is provided by dfvfs.

File System Formats

File System Format support is provided by dfvfs.

File formats

TODO expand this list

Bencode file formats

  • Transmission
  • uTorrent

ESE database file formats

  • Internet Explorer WebCache format

OLE Compound File formats

  • Document summary information
  • Summary information (top-level only)

Property list (plist) formats

TODO expand this list

SQLite database file formats

  • Android call logs
  • Android SMS
  • Chrome cookies
  • Chrome browsing and downloads history
  • Firefox browsing and downloads history
  • Google Drive
  • Launch services quarantine events
  • MacKeeper
  • Mac OS X document versions
  • Skype
  • Zeitgeist activity

Windows Registry formats

TODO expand this list

  • AppCompatCache
  • CCleaner
  • MountPoints2
  • MSIE Zone
  • MSIE Zone Software

History

Plaso is a Python-based rewrite of the Perl-based log2timeline initially created by Kristinn Gudjonsson. Plaso builds upon the SleuthKit, libyal and other projects.

See Also

External Links