This post is part of a series of posts categorized as “Wiki” that contain basic how-to information. The intent is to create a reference repository for myself, but I’m not selfish so if anyone else can also benefit from it then I’m happy to share the knowledge!
What follows is a basic walkthrough of creating a simple VPC
with public and private subnets. One public and one private subnet are in one
availability zone. The second public and private subnets are in a different
This VPC setup has several use cases. For example:
The public subnets could be used as a sort of DMZ
with more sensitive resources located within the private subnets.
You can deploy webservers across the two private
subnets with an AWS load balancer in the public subnets.
I’m almost 35 and I’ve never built a PC. We’re going to fix that. Also it’s going to be a real monster of a computer.
My main consideration is being able to safely reverse engineer
malware samples. I’m currently following the not so wise practice of
doing malware analysis on my primary computer. While I haven’t screwed
up yet, I really need change that. Especially if I’m going to espouse to
others that they shouldn’t be playing with malware on the same computer
that they do everything else on.
To address the malware problem I’m going to be doing a dual boot of
Windows and Linux. Windows will be my everyday operating system. Linux
will be my malware playground. Each OS is getting a dedicated, 2 TB
solid state drive.
My second consideration was performance.
I do some HD video editing and my current computer just doesn’t have
the compute, graphics, or memory to support it. When I work on videos
everything runs painfully slow and has a tendency to crash.
In addition to video editing, I do a lot of virtualization. This is
especially true when playing with malware samples. My current setup just
can’t gracefully handle a small VLAN with multiple virtual hosts any
Now, I must admit I’ve probably gone a little overboard here… but I figure you only live once! With that in mind I bought a 32-core processor, 128 GB of memory, and two really nice graphics cards.
At the September 2018 SecDSM meeting I gave a presentation titled
“Amateur Malware Analysis.” Thank you to anyone who came and watched!
For anyone who didn’t make it or didn’t watch SecDSM’s live-stream the summary for my presentation was:
Are you interested in reversing but
don’t know where to start? Think reversing is beyond your means? This
talk will try to make the topic of reversing more accessible and will
focus on amateur malware analysis, including setting up your
environment, free tools, and some demos.
Here are the slides I used for my presentation in case anyone wanted to reference them:
The slides contain URLs to the tools I talked about in the
presentation. They still seemed to be safe the last time I checked them
(although some AV engines disagree for some of the tools). That being
said, as with all open source software and freeware that you download,
you use them at your own risk. If you want to be really safe about it
you could simply download them inside of the VM you plan to use for your
malware analysis, and then only run them in your analysis VM. In fact,
that is what I do. The same idea applies to any malware samples you
I really enjoy attending SecDSM. If you are interested you can check them out at https://secdsm.org/.
So you may have noticed (although I highly doubt that seeing as no
one looks at my website… which is entirely my own fault for neglecting
it…) that I’ve made some updates.
I’m migrating to a new server and doing some other fun things. After
all, the reason I started this website was to use it as a grand
experiment so I could try out new things and learn things through
I’m not going to keep all the same content I had at my old website,
but I am going to go through and cherry pick blog posts to keep.
I’m probably going to focus most of my content on the core topics of:
politics (I know, don’t judge…), being a geek, anything viking, or
*I reserve the right to blog anything else at random and you will just have to put up with it when it happens….