Rather than repeat the information in the extensive man page and on the wireshark.org documentation archive, this tutorial will provide practical examples to get started using
tshark and begin carving valuable information from the wire.
Use these as the basis for starting to build extraction commands.The syntax for capturing and reading a
pcap is very similar to
Capture Packets with Tshark
tshark -i wlan0 -w capture-output.pcap
Read a Pcap with Tshark
tshark -r capture-output.pcap
HTTP Analysis with Tshark
The following example extracts data from any HTTP requests that are seen. Using the
-T specifies we want to extract fields. The
-e option identifies which fields to extract.
tshark -i wlan0 -Y http.request -T fields -e http.host -e http.user_agent
searchdns.netcraft.com Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux x86_64; rv:36.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/36.0 searchdns.netcraft.com Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux x86_64; rv:36.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/36.0 ads.netcraft.com Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Ubuntu; Linux x86_64; rv:36.0) Gecko/20100101 Firefox/36.0
The default separator for the fields in the output above is TAB. We could also use the parameter
-E seperator=, to change the delimiter to a comma.
Parse User Agents and Frequency with Standard Shell Commands
Using the previous command to extract
http.user_agent, this time extracting from a pcap rather than off the live interface. Note in this example, combining with standard shell commands allows us to
sort and count the occurrences of the
tshark -r example.pcap -Y http.request -T fields -e http.host -e http.user_agent | sort | uniq -c | sort -n
Using this, we can quickly parse a
pcap, even if it is very large and get a summary of all the user agents seen. This can be used to detect malware, old browsers on your network and scripts.
Using additional HTTP filters in Analysis
We could perform a similar analysis with the request URL in place of the user agent
-e http.request.full_uri. Other fields we could include in the output are
-e ip.dst and
-e http.request.method. By combing different filters and output fields, it is possible to create very complex data extraction commands for tshark that can be used to find interesting things within a capture.
tshark -r example.pcap -Y http.request -T fields -e http.host -e ip.dst -e http.request.full_uri
DNS Analysis with Tshark
Here is an example that extracts both the DNS query and the response address.
tshark -i wlan0 -f "src port 53" -n -T fields -e dns.qry.name -e dns.resp.addr
68 campus-map.stanford.edu 126.96.36.199 www.google.com itunes.apple.com 188.8.131.52 71 itunes.apple.com campus-map.stanford.edu admission.stanford.edu 184.108.40.206 74 financialaid.stanford.edu 220.127.116.11 admission.stanford.edu
Add time and source / destination IP addresses
-e frame.time -e ip.src -e ip.dst to your output.
tshark -i wlan0 -f "src port 53" -n -T fields -e frame.time -e ip.src -e ip.dst -e dns.qry.name -e dns.resp.addr
Apr 22, 2015 23:20:16.922103000 18.104.22.168 192.168.1.7 wprecon.com 22.214.171.124 1 Apr 22, 2015 23:20:17.314244000 126.96.36.199 192.168.1.7 wprecon.com 2 Apr 22, 2015 23:20:18.090110000 188.8.131.52 192.168.1.7 code.jquery.com
Let's get passwords.... in a HTTP post. By not specifying the fields option as above we receive the full TCP stream of the HTTP Post. If we add the filter
tcp contains "password" and
grep for that password we will just get the actual POST data line.
tshark -i wlan0 -Y 'http.request.method == POST and tcp contains "password"' | grep password
For our Next Trick
The latest version of Tshark 2.4 includes a number of useful new features. To install the latest version on Ubuntu 16.04 or 17.04 use the following commands to add the package repository.
sudo add-apt-repository ppa:dreibh/ppa sudo apt-get update && sudo apt-get install wireshark tshark
Extract Files from PCAP using Tshark
An excellent feature of tshark is the ability to export objects (files) from
pcaps using the command line.
The export objects feature has been available in wireshark for a long time now. Having this ability available on the command line is an excellent addition to
You will need version 2.3.0 or higher for the export objects parameter to be available to
This command will extract files from an
SMB stream and extract them to the location
tshark -nr test.pcap --export-objects smb,tmpfolder
This command will do the same except from
HTTP, extracting all the files seen in the
tshark -nr test.pcap --export-objects http,tmpfolder
It is a quick and easy way to get all the images, html, js and other HTTP objects from a pcap containing HTTP traffic.
Hopefully this tutorial has given you a quick taste of the useful features that are available to you when using
tshark for extracting data from the wire or from pcaps.
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