Tag Archives: ports

Who’s Phoning Home On Your Internet Connection? Find Out With CurrPorts and, Process and Port Analyzer

imageThere’s not much point (from a cybercriminal’s perspective), in infecting a computer with malware unless the information which it’s been designed to capture, ends up in the nasty hands of the criminal.

Generally speaking then, it’s reasonable to say that the most important function of malware (again, from a cybercriminals perspective) is to “phone home” with the information it’s been designed to steal. It’s hardly surprising that much of the malware infecting the Internet does just that.

You can, if you like, trust that your AV solution will tip you off to any nasty behavior occurring in the background. But, as a follower of  the “better safe than sorry” school of thought, trusting in any AV solution to safeguard my systems in all instances, just doesn’t compute with me. There are no perfect AV solutions.

All to often, “new” malware has already rampaged through the Internet (despite the best AV providers have to offer), before average users become aware. As a result, I’ve long made it a practice to monitor my open ports and Internet connections frequently, throughout a browsing session.

At first glance you might think port checking is time consuming and not worth the effort. But it is worth the effort, and it’s not time consuming – it often takes no more than a few seconds. More to the point, in my view, it is a critical component of the layered defense approach to Internet security that regular readers of this site are familiar with.

There are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download, and the following is a brief description of each. If you are familiar and comfortable with using the Windows command structure, then you may want to try the command line utility Netstat, which displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections. This utility and the process, are covered later in this article.

But first:

CurrPorts (this is the port tool I use daily), allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application (keep in mind, that malware, for all practical purposes – is an application) that is using those ports. You can close a selected connection as well as terminating the process using it.

In addition, you can export all, or selected items, to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

Shown in this screen capture – Browser is not running. No remote connections. Looks like I’m safe.

CurrPorts 2

Shown in this screen capture – Browser is running. Thirty remote connections, all of which are legitimate.

image

Fast Facts:

View current active ports and their starting applications

Close selected connections and processes

Save a text/ HTML report

Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: NirSoft (you’ll need to cursor down the page to the download link).

Next up:

Process and Port Analyzer is a real time process, port and network connections analyzer which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

image

Fast Facts:

View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it

View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them

View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID

Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s

Download at: http://sourceforge.net

Netstat:

Windows includes a command line utility which will help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

image

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

In Windows 8 – type “cmd” at the Metro screen.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type Netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table, and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The Netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The Netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers.

Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, is a terrific source of information where you can test all the ports on your machine as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. I recommend that you take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

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Filed under 64 Bit Software, Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Freeware, Internet Safety Tools, Malware Protection, Software, Utilities

Keep An Eye On Your Internet Ports With Free TCPEye

botnet computersA network monitor will allow you to analyze  activity on your ports, and it’s a great way to  for you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet – that’s a prudent practice.

If an application or process is opening ports on your machine, you need to be sure it’s doing so for legitimate reasons – that it’s not malware.

TCPEye is a particularly easy-to-use multi-language freeware network monitoring application, with a host of features. The application allows you to view a list of TCP/IP and UDP ports that are currently in use – including the process name, full path of the process, version information of the process (product name, file description, and so on), the time that the process was created, and the user that created it.

If necessary, you can close a selected connection, and terminate the process using it.

Click on graphic to expand.

TCPEye

You can use the integrated VirusTotal Uploader to check if a process is legitimate, or malware.

Click on graphic to expand.

TCPEye2

Additional features include – integrated Whois lookup, GeoIP Tool, country flag icons, and more.

Click on graphic to expand.

image

Fast facts:

TCPEye displays the list of all currently opened TCP/IP and UDP ports on your local computer.

For each port in the list, information about the process that opened the port is also displayed, including the process name, full path of the process, version information of the process (product name, file description, and so on), the time that the process was created, and the user that created it.

TCPEye allows you to close unwanted TCP connections, kill the process that opened the ports, and save the TCP/UDP ports information to HTML file , XML file, or to tab-delimited text file.

TCPEye also automatically marks suspicious TCP/UDP ports owned by unidentified applications (Applications without version information and icons).

System requirements:  Windows 7, Vista, NT, XP, Server 2008

Download at: Download.com

For additional information on port monitoring applications, as well as how to use the Windows Netstat command, checkout – Who’s Using Your Ports? Find Out With These Free Port Analyzers, on this site.

Note: Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, is a terrific source of information where you can test all the ports on your machine, as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. Take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

4 Comments

Filed under Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Malware Protection, Network Tools, Software, System Security, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

Who’s Using Your Ports? Find Out With These Free Port Analyzers

botnet computers

As a savvy Internet user you are well armed when it comes to ensuring your system is not open to compromise, or exploitation, by malware.

You have protected your machine with an appropriate defense system including a Firewall (either software or hardware), sound and effective antimalware applications (including anti-virus and antispyware), anti-keylogger, and an additional protection layer against zero-day threats with the installation of an application such as ThreatFire.

But, you can take your existing defense system to another level by installing a small application which will provide you with the tools you need to analyze the activity on your ports.

There are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download, and the following is a brief description of two such applications.

If you are familiar and comfortable with using the Windows command structure, then you may want to try the command line utility Netstat, which displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections. This utility and the process are covered later in this article.

But first:

Process and Port Analyzer 2

Process and Port Analyzer 2 is a real time process, port, and network connections analyzer, which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

image

Quick Facts:

View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it.

View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them.

View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID.

Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s.

Download at: Download.com

CurrPorts

CurrPorts allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application that is using it. You can close a selected connection and also terminate the process using it.

As well, you can export all, or selected items to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

image

Quick Facts:

View current active ports and there starting applications

Close selected connections and processes

Save a text/ HTML report

Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: Download.com

Netstat:

Windows includes a command line utility which can help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

image

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process, if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table, and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers. A very good source of information is Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, where you can test all the ports on your machine, as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. Take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

If you found this article useful, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

4 Comments

Filed under Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Network Tools, Software, System Security, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

2 Free Port Checkers – CurrPorts and Process and Port Analyzer

image If I was a malware writer, and some days I wonder why I’m not since it’s so easy, the most important function of the malware would be to “phone home”, with the information I had targeted to steal. There’s nothing unusual about this, since much of the malware currently infecting the Internet does just that.

So, keeping that in mind, when I have an issue on one of my home machines, and occasionally I do, the very first thing I check is the state of the ports on that machine. Actually, since I’m involved in Internet security, I monitor my open ports and Internet connections frequently throughout a browsing session.

At first glance you might think port checking is time consuming and not worth the effort. But it is worth the effort, and it’s not time consuming. More to the point, in my view, it is a critical component of the layered defense approach to Internet security that regular readers of this site are familiar with.

I don’t want to shatter any illusions  for those of you who believe that the Internet is “free” but, when running a port checker, you might be unpleasantly surprised at the number of ad servers that hold open ports on your machine.

There are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download and the following is a brief description of each. If you are familiar and comfortable with using the Windows command structure, then you may want to try the command line utility Netstat, which displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections. This utility and the process, are covered later in this article.

But first:

Process and Port Analyzer is a real time process, port and network connections analyzer which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

image

Quick Facts:

View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it

View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them

View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID

Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s

Download at: Download.com

CurrPorts (this is the port tool I use daily), allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application that is using it. You can close a selected connection and also terminate the process using it. As well, you can export all, or selected items to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

image

Quick Facts:

View current active ports and there starting applications

Close selected connections and processes

Save a text/ HTML report

Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: Download.com

Netstat:

Windows XP includes a command line utility which will help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

image

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process, if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table, and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers.

Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, is a terrific source of information where you can test all the ports on your machine as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. I recommend that you take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

If you enjoyed this article, why not subscribe to this Blog via RSS, or email? It’s easy; just click on this link and you’ll never miss another Tech Thoughts article.

1 Comment

Filed under Anti-Malware Tools, Don't Get Hacked, downloads, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Interconnectivity, Internet Safety Tools, Software, System Utilities, Utilities, Windows 7, Windows Tips and Tools

Port Testing With Process And Port Analyzer, CurrPorts and Netstat

botnet computers Each time that you connect to the Internet you are wandering through a raucous neighborhood which has a reputation for being jam-packed with predators.

These predators are intent on stealing your money and personal information, installing damaging programs on your computer, or misleading you with an online scam.

As a savvy Internet user you are, most likely, generally well armed when it comes to ensuring your system is not open to compromise, or exploitation, by malware in the wild.

It is probable you have protected your machine with an appropriate defense system including a firewall (either software or hardware), a sound and effective malware suite (including anti-virus and spyware), and an additional protection layer against zero-day threats with the installation of an application such as ThreatFire, a free application developed by PC Tools.

But you can take your existing defense system to another level by installing a small application which will provide you with the tools you need to analyze the activity on your ports.

There are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download and the following is a brief description of each. If you are familiar and comfortable with using the Windows command structure, then you may want to try the command line utility Netstat, which displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections. This utility and the process are covered later in this article.

But first:

Process and Port Analyzer is a real time process, port and network connections analyzer which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

Process-And-Port-Analyzer 1

Quick Facts:

View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it

View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them

View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID

Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s

Download at: Download.com

CurrPorts allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application that is using it. You can close a selected connection and also terminate the process using it. As well, you can export all, or selected items to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

currports 1

Quick Facts:

View current active ports and there starting applications

Close selected connections and processes

Save a text/ HTML report

Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: Download.com

Netstat:

Windows XP includes a command line utility which will help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

Netstat

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process, if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table, and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers. A very good source of information is Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, where you can test all the ports on your machine as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. Take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

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Filed under Anti-Malware Tools, Don't Get Hacked, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Interconnectivity, Networking, Safe Surfing, Software, System Security, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

Another Layer of Internet Safety – Probe Your Ports

Each time that you connect to the Internet you are wandering through a raucous neighborhood which has a reputation for being jam-packed with predators. These predators are intent on stealing your money and personal information, installing damaging programs on your computer, or misleading you with an online scam.

As a savvy Internet user you are, most likely, generally well armed when it comes to ensuring your system is not open to compromise, or exploitation, by malware in the wild.

It is probable you have protected your machine with an appropriate defense system including a firewall (either software or hardware), a sound and effective malware suite (including anti-virus and spyware), and an additional protection layer against zero-day threats with the installation of an application such as ThreatFire 3, a free application developed by PC Tools.

But you can take your existing defense system to another level by installing a small application which will provide you with the tools you need to analyze the activity on your ports.

There are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download and the following is a brief description of each. If you are familiar and comfortable with using the Windows command structure, then you may want to try the command line utility Netstat, which displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections. This utility and the process are covered later in this article.

But first:

Process and Port Analyzer is a real time process, port and network connections analyzer which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

Quick Facts:

View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it

View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them

View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID

Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s

Download at: Download.com

CurrPorts allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application that is using it. You can close a selected connection and also terminate the process using it. As well, you can export all, or selected items to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

Quick Facts:

View current active ports and there starting applications

Close selected connections and processes

Save a text/ HTML report

Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: Download.com

Netstat:

Windows XP includes a command line utility which will help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process, if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table, and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers. A very good source of information is Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, where you can test all the ports on your machine as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. Take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

2 Comments

Filed under Anti-Malware Tools, Freeware, Geek Software and Tools, Interconnectivity, Internet Safety, Internet Safety Tools, Online Safety, Software, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools

Free Port Analyzers – Defeat Spyware/Botware


Windows XP has a command line utility which will help you determine if you have Spyware/Botware running on your system. Netstat displays protocol statistics and current TCP/IP connections.

I use this utility as a test, to ensure that the anti-malware tools and Firewall running on my systems are functioning correctly, and that there are no open outgoing connections to the Internet that I am not aware of.

How to use Netstat:

You should close all open programs before you begin the following process, if you are unsure which ports/connections are normally open while you are connected to the Internet. On the other hand, if you are familiar with the ports/connections that are normally open, there is no need to close programs.

There are a number of methods that will take you to a command prompt, but the following works well.

Click Start>Run>type “cmd” – without the quotes>click OK> this will open a command box.

From the command prompt, type Netstat –a (be sure to leave a space), to display all connections and listening ports.

You can obtain additional information by using the following switches.

Type netstat -r to display the contents of the IP routing table and any persistent routes.

The -n switch tells Netstat not to convert addresses and port numbers to names, which speeds up execution.

The netstat -s option shows all protocol statistics.

The netstat-p option can be used to show statistics for a specific protocol or together with the -s option to show connections only for the protocol specified.

The -e switch displays interface statistics.

Running Netstat occasionally is a prudent move, since it allows you to double check which applications are connecting to the Internet.

If you find there are application connections to the Internet, or open ports, that you are unfamiliar with, a Google search should provide answers. A very good source of information is Steve Gibson’s website, Shields Up, where you can test all the ports on your machine, as well as testing the efficiency of your Firewall. Take the Firewall test; you may be surprised at the results!

If you are unfamiliar with, or uncomfortable with using the command structure, there are a number of free real-time port analyzers available for download.

Process and Port Analyzer is a real time process, port and network connections analyzer which will allow you to find which processes are using which ports. A good little utility that does what it says it will do.

Quick Facts:

· View currently running processes along with the full path and file which started it

· View the active TCP Listeners and the processes using them

· View the active TCP and UDP connections along with Process ID

· Double click on a process to view the list of DLL’s

Download at: Download.com

CurrPorts allows you to view a list of ports that are currently in use, and the application that is using it. You can close a selected connection and also terminate the process using it. As well, you can export all, or selected items to an HTML or text report. Additional information includes the local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes and more.

Quick Facts:

· View current active ports and there starting applications

· Close selected connections and processes

· Save a text/ HTML report

· Info on local port name, local/remote IP address, highlighted status changes

Download at: Download.com

1 Comment

Filed under Anti-Malware Tools, Diagnostic Software, Free Security Programs, Freeware, Interconnectivity, Internet Safety, Internet Safety Tools, Online Safety, Safe Surfing, Software, Spyware - Adware Protection, System Security, Utilities, Windows Tips and Tools