This platform supports interaction with a Windows target where either a cmd.exe or powershell.exe stdio is connected directly to the active channel. pwncat will utilize the C2 libraries located at pwncat-windows-c2 This will be automatically downloaded to the directory identified by the windows_c2_dir configuration which defaults to ~/.local/share/pwncat/. It will be uploaded and executed via Install-Util in order to automatically bypass AppLocker, and will provide you an unlogged, unconstrained powershell session as well as basic process and file IO routines.

When operating in a platform-specific environment, you can safely execute multiple processes and open multiple files with this platform. However, you should be careful to cleanup all processes and files prior to return from your method or code as the C2 will not attempt to garbage collect file or proces handles.

class str, provides: List[str], url: str, version: str)

Bases: object

Tells pwncat where to find a builtin plugin

name: str

A friendly name used when loading the plugin

provides: List[str]

List of DLL names which this plugin provides

url: str

URL pointing to a tar.gz file containing the plugin DLL(s)

version: str

The version number to download (this is formatted into the URL)

class, name: str, checksum: str, ident: int)

Bases: object

Represents a reflectively loaded .Net plugin within the remote C2 This class is a helper which makes calling methods within a plugin more straightforward. If you want to call a method named get_system you can use one of two syntaxes:"get_system", "arguments", 1, 2, False)
plugin.get_system("arguments", 1, 2, False)
  • name (str) – basename of the file which was loaded

  • checksum (str) – md5sum of the assembly

  • ident (int) – identifier for the remote assembly

run(method: str, *args)

Execute a method within the plugin

class pwncat.platform.Platform, args, stdout, stdin, stderr, text, encoding, errors, bufsize, result)

Bases: pwncat.subprocess.Popen

Windows-specific Popen wrapper class

args: List[str]
communicate(input=None, timeout=None)

Interact with process: Send data to stdin. Read data from stdout and stderr, until end-of-file is readched. Wait for the process to terminate and set the returncode attribute. The optional input argument should be data to be sent to the child process, or None, if no data should be sent to the child. If streams were opened in text mode, input must be a string. Otherwise, it must be bytes.


Kills the child

pid: int

Poll if the process has completed and get return code

returncode: int
stderr: IO
stdin: IO
stdout: IO

Stop the child.

wait(timeout: float = None)

Wait for child process to terminate. Set and return returncode attribute.

If the process does not terminate after timeout seconds, raise a TimeoutExpired exception. It is safe to catch this exception and retry the wait.


Bases: Exception

Executing a powershell script caused an error

exception int, message: str)

Bases: Exception

class pwncat.session.Session, channel:, *args, **kwargs)

Bases: pwncat.platform.Platform

Concrete platform class abstracting interaction with a Windows/ Powershell remote host. The remote windows host must support powershell for this platform to function, and the channel must be established with an open powershell session.

C2_VERSION = 'v0.2.1'

alias of pathlib.PureWindowsPath

PLUGIN_INFO = [BuiltinPluginInfo(name='windows-c2', provides=['stageone.dll', 'stagetwo.dll'], url='{version}/pwncat-windows-{version}.tar.gz', version='v0.2.1'), BuiltinPluginInfo(name='badpotato', provides=['BadPotato.dll'], url='{version}/pwncat-badpotato-{version}.tar.gz', version='v0.0.1-alpha')]
Popen(args, bufsize=- 1, stdin=None, stdout=None, stderr=None, shell=False, cwd=None, encoding=None, text=None, errors=None, env=None, bootstrap_input=None, **other_popen_kwargs)pwncat.subprocess.Popen

Execute a process on the remote host with an interface similar to that of the python standard subprocess.Popen. The returned object behaves much like a standard Popen object and conforms to the interface defined by pwncat.subprocess.Popen. For an explanation of arguments, see pwncat.subprocess.Popen.

abspath(path: str) → str

Convert the given relative path to absolute.


path (str) – a relative path


an equivalent absolute path

Return type


chdir(path: str)

Change the current working directory

chmod(path: str, mode: int)

Change a file’s mode. Per the python documentation, this is only used to change the read-only flag for the Windows platform.

dotnet_load(name: str, content: Optional[Union[bytes, _io.BytesIO]] = None)

Reflectively load a .Net C2 plugin from the attacker machine. The plugin DLL should implement the Plugin class and method interface. The name argument can either be a path to a local DLL or the name of a DLL provided by a built-in plugin. Built-in plugins will be automatically downloaded if not present in the directory pointed to by the plugin_path configuration.

Plugins are also deduplicated prior to loading on the victim. If a given DLL name or a file with a matching hash has already been loaded, the existing plugin object is returned, and the DLL is not loaded again.

The return DotNetPlugin class is capable of cleanly translating method calls to the methods within the loaded DLL. For example, if plugin.dll defined a method named foo, which took a single string argument, you could call it with:

plugin = session.platform.dotnet_load("./plugin.dll")
result ="Hello World!")

Plugins can take as parameters and return any JSON-serializable objects.

  • name (str) – name or path to the DLL to upload

  • content (Optional[Union[bytes, BytesIO]]) – content of the DLL to load or file-like object, if not present on disk

Return type



Ensure the C2 exits on the victim end. This is called automatically by session.close, and shouldn’t be called manually.


Unique host identifier for this target. It is taken from the unique cryptographic GUID stored in the windows registry at install.


We don’t need to do this for windows

getenv(name: str) → str

Retrieve the value of a given environment variable in the current shell.


name (str) – name of the environment variable


value of the variable

Return type



Retrieve the cached User ID

impersonate(token: int)

Impersonate a user token in the powershell and .net contexts.


token (int) – the user token to impersonate

property interactive
interactive_loop(interactive_complete: threading.Event)

Interactively read input from the attacker and send it to an interactive terminal on the victim. RawModeExit and ChannelClosed exceptions are handled by the manager appropriately. If any changes are made to the local TTY, they should be reverted before returning (ideally via a try-finally block). Output from the remote host is automatically piped to stdout via a background thread by the manager.

is_admin() → bool

Determine if our current user is an administrator user

is_system() → bool

Determine if our current user is SYSTEM We might not need this, because the users name SHOULD be system… but we implement it just in face

Create hard link at path pointing to target. This will likely result in a PermissionError exception on Windows. It is implemented with the New-Item powershell commandlet.

  • target (str) – the path to the target of the link

  • path (str) – the path to the new link object

listdir(path: str)

Return a list of items in the directory at the given relative or absolute directory path.


path (str) – relative or abosolute directory path


list of file or directory names

Return type



Perform stat on a link instead of the target of the link.

mkdir(path: str, mode: int = 511, parents: bool = True)

Create a new directory. This is implemented with the New-Item commandlet.

  • path (str) – path to the new directory

  • mode (int) – permissions for the directory (ignored for windows)

  • parents – whether to create all items (defaults to True for windows)

name = 'windows'

Run the New-Item commandlet with specified arguments and raise the appropriate local exception if requried. For a list of valid arguments, see the New-Item help documentation.

open(path: Union[str, pwncat.platform.Path], mode: str = 'r', buffering: int = - 1, encoding: str = 'utf-8', errors: str = None, newline: str = None)

Mimick the built-in open method.

classmethod open_plugin(manager: pwncat.manager.Manager, name: str) → _io.BytesIO

Open the given plugin DLL for reading and return an open file object. If the given name matches a builtin plugin, it will be used. If a builtin plugin is not available, it will be downloaded from it’s URL and saved in the provided plugin path. If the name does not match a provided plugin DLL, it is interpreted as a path and attempted to be opened.

  • manager (pwncat.manager.Manager) – the pwncat manager object used to locate the plugin directory

  • name (str) – name of the plugin being requested

Return type


parse_response(data: bytes)

Parse a line of data from the C2

powershell(script: Union[str, BinaryIO], depth: int = 1)

Execute a powershell script in the context of the C2. The results of the command are automatically serialized with ConvertTo-Json. You can control the depth of serialization, although with large objects this may impose significant performance impacts. The default depth is 1.

  • script (Union[str, BinaryIO]) – a powershell script to execute on the target

  • depth (int) – the depth of serialization within the returned object, defaults to 1

process_output(data: bytes)

Process stdout while in interactive mode. This is called each time the victim output thread receives data. You can modify the input data and return a new copy if needed before output to the screen.


data (bytes) – the data received from the victim in interactive mode

Read the target of a filesystem link


Retrieve the current user ID. For Windows, this is done through System.Security.Principal.WindowsIdentity::GetCurrent().User.

rename(src: str, dst: str)

Rename a file

  • src (str) – path to the source file

  • dst (str) – path or new name for the destination file


Revert any impersonations and return to the original user

rmdir(path: str, recurse: bool = False)

Remove a directory, optionally remove all contents first.

  • path (str) – path to a directory to remove

  • recurse (bool) – whether to recursively remove all contents first

run_method(typ: str, method: str, *args, wait: bool = True)

Execute a method within the pwncat-windows-c2. You must specify the type and method arguments. Arguments are passed via json encoding so any valid JSON types should be passed correctly onto the C2. Named arguments are not supported. Results are returned as a dictionary. In the case of an error, a ProtocolError is raised with the error code and message.

  • typ (str) – The type name where the method you’d like to execute resides

  • method (str) – The name of the method you’d like to execute

  • *args (correct type for given method) – the positional arguments for the method you are calling


Set a prompt method for powershell to ensure our prompt looks pretty :)

stat(path: str)

Perform a stat on the given path, returning important file system details on the file.


path (str) – path to an existing file


the stat data

Return type


Create a symlink at path pointing to target. This is implemented using the New-Item powershell commandlet.

  • target (str) – the path to the target of the link

  • path (str) – the path to the new link object

tempfile(mode: str, length: Optional[int] = 8, suffix: Optional[str] = None)

Create a temporary file in a safe directory. Optionally provide a suffix

touch(path: str)

Touch a file (aka update timestamps and possibly create).


path (str) – path to new or existing file

umask(mask: Optional[int] = None)

Set or retrieve the current umask value

Remove an entry from the file system.


path (str) – path to a file or empty directory

whoami() → str

Retrieve the current user name

NOTE: This is not cached.

class, mode: str, handle: int, name: str = None)

Bases: io.RawIOBase

Wrapper around file handles on Windows


Close a file handle on the remote host

readable() → bool

Return whether object was opened for reading.

If False, read() will raise OSError.


Read until EOF

readinto(b: Union[memoryview, bytearray])
writable() → bool

Return whether object was opened for writing.

If False, write() will raise OSError.

write(data: bytes)

Write data to this file


Bases: object

Python os doesn’t provide a way to sainly construct a stat_result so I created this.

st_atime = 0
st_atime_ns = 0
st_birthtime = 0
st_blksize = 0
st_blocks = 0
st_creator = 0
st_ctime = 0
st_ctime_ns = 0
st_dev = 0
st_file_attributes = 0
st_flags = 0
st_fstype = 0
st_gen = 0
st_gid = 0
st_ino = 0
st_mode = 0
st_mtime = 0
st_mtime_ns = 0
st_rdev = 0
st_reparse_tag = 0
st_rsize = 0
st_size = 0
st_type = 0
st_uid = 0