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Bash Scripting

Refernce page for bash scripting, summarized notes from PEN-200, These notes were written quite a whilte ago, so some inaccurasies might be expected.
A Bash script is a plain-text file that contains a series of commands that are executed as if they had been typed at a terminal prompt, sequentially.
Shebang -> #!
The shebang symbol is used to indicate the interpreter used to execute the script
e.g. #!/bin/bash
Bash Script Checklist
  • #!/bin/bash - Adding the 'shebang' at the top of the file
  • Providing execution permission for the file
Bash Notes
  • Bash is case-sensitive
  • execute bash with ' -x ' flag to print extra debug info
  • Semi-colon ' ; ' is used as a command terminator
  • Single quotes acts different than double quotes
    • Double quotes allow the special meaning of these characters - $ , \ , `
    name='sahar shukrun'
    ​
    greeting1='Hello $name' # cannot resolve the variable and prints the var name as is
    --Hello $name
    ​
    greeting="Hello $name" # variable can be used even when quotes are in place
    --Hello sahar shukrun

Variables

# Declaring variables
cert_name='oscp'
​
# Variable dereference using the '$' sign
$cert_name
--'oscp'

Scope of Variables

Local variables
local name="Joe"
​
## Usage
---------
#!/bin/bash
# var scope example
name1="John"
name2="Jason"
​
name_change() {
local name1="Edward"
echo "Inside of this function, name1 is $name1 and name2 is $name2"
name2="Lucas"
}
​
echo "Before the function call, name1 is $name1 and name2 is $name2"
name_change
echo "After the function call, name1 is $name1 and name2 is $name2"
---
kali@kali:~$ ./varscope.sh
Before the function call, name1 is John and name2 is Jason
Inside of this function, name1 is Edward and name2 is Jason
After the function call, name1 is John and name2 is Lucas

Command Substitution

A mechanism to save the output of a command to a variable; Two method are available:
  • Wrapping the command with: $( ) - Newer and preferred method
  • Wrapping the command with: ` - older and discouraged method (both method are implemented differently)
command substitution happens in a subshell and changes to variables in the subshell will not alter variables from the master process
## Method 1
user=$(whoami)
echo $user
--kali
​
## Method 2
user=`whoami`
echo $user
--kali

Reading user Input

We can read the user input while the script is running by using 'read'
kali@kali:~$ cat ./input.sh
#!/bin/bash
echo "Hello there, would you like to learn how to hack: Y/N?"
read answer
echo "Your answer was $answer"
kali@kali:~$ chmod +x ./input.sh
kali@kali:~$ ./input.sh
Hello there, would you like to learn how to hack: Y/N?
Y
Your answer was Y
Read
  • -p - allows you to specify a prompt to the user
  • -s - makes the input silent (unseen on screen)

Arguments

Special Bash Variables

If, Else, Elif Statements

General syntax
if [ <condition> ]
then
<code>
elif
then
<code>
else
<code>
fi #block terminator

Boolean operators & Command list

Command list
Command lists are a chain of commands that have a certain code flow according to the operators used
  • | - Pipe, is one such operator, a pipe will redirect the output of a command to the next command
  • && - The AND operator bind the commands it is being used by with an AND condition;
    If the first command is not successful, the second command will not be executed, it requires the first command to yield True, otherwise it will stop
    # Example for Successful &&
    kali@kali:~$ user2=kali
    kali@kali:~$ grep $user2 /etc/passwd && echo "$user2 found!"
    kali:x:1000:1000:,,,:/home/kali:/bin/bash
    kali found!
    ​
    # Failed &&
    kali@kali:~$ user2=bob
    kali@kali:~$ grep $user2 /etc/passwd && echo "$user2 found!"
  • || - The OR operator requires at-least 1 command, meaning, only if the first command failed, the next one will be executed.
    kali@kali:~$ grep $user2 /etc/passwd && echo "$user2 found!" || echo "$user2 not found!"
    bob not found!
Boolean Operators
The same && and || operator can be use like normal AND, OR in conditioning (if, else, etc)

Loops

For Loops
for var-name in <list>
do
<action to perform>
done
While Loops
while [ <some test> ]
do
<perform an action>
done
# while loops example
counter=1
while [ $counter -le 10 ]
do
echo "10.11.1.$counter"
((counter++))
done
Utility Commands
  • seq - sequence, seems to operate like python's 'range' function; 1st parameter is the first number on the list (inclusive), 2nd number is the end of the list (inclusive)
    • A sequence can also be created by using 'brace expansion' = {1..10}
    ## ways to generate a list of number or chars
    ​
    # 1st way
    seq 1 10
    ​
    #2nd way
    {1..10}

Functions

Note: The parenthasis serve only as decoration, parameters cannot be used.
# 1st format
function_name () {
commands...
}
​
# 2nd format
function function_name {
commands...
}
To get return values from the functions we can:
  • Use the $? global variable and receive an exit status (Zero for success, non-zero for failure)
#!/bin/bash
# function return value example
return_me() {
echo "Oh hello there, I'm returning a random value!"
return $RANDOM
}
return_me
echo "The previous function returned a value of $?"
kali@kali:~$ chmod +x ./funcrvalue.sh
kali@kali:~$ ./funcrvalue.sh
Oh hello there, I'm returning a random value!
The previous function returned a value of 198
  • Set a new global variable with the value we want to return
  • Use command substitution on the function and simulate a return value by assigning it to a new variable