A powerful, easily deployable network traffic analysis tool suite
Malcolm provides an instance of NetBox, an open-source “solution for modeling and documenting modern networks.” The NetBox web interface is available at at https://localhost/netbox/ if you are connecting locally.
The design of a potentially deeper integration between Malcolm and Netbox is a work in progress.
Please see the NetBox page on GitHub, its documentation and its public demo for more information.
As Zeek logs and Suricata alerts are parsed and enriched (if the
LOGSTASH_NETBOX_ENRICHMENT environment variable in
docker-compose.yml is set to
true) the NetBox API will be queried for the associated hosts’ information. If found, the information retrieved by NetBox will be used to enrich these logs through the creation of the following new fields. See the NetBox API documentation and the NetBox documentation.
/virtualization/clusters/) (for Virtual Machine device types)
destination.device.details(full JSON object, only with
destination.segment.details(full JSON object, only with
relatedfields (the same approach used in ECS)
For Malcolm’s purposes, both physical devices and virtualized hosts will be stored as described above: the
device_type field can be used to distinguish between them.
NetBox has the concept of sites. Sites can have overlapping IP address ranges, of course. The value of the
NETBOX_DEFAULT_SITE variable in environment variable in
docker-compose.yml will be used as a query parameter for these enrichment lookups.
This feature was implemented as described in idaholab/Malcolm#132.
As Malcolm cross-checks network traffic with NetBox’s model (as described above), the resulting enrichment data (or lack thereof) can highlight devices and services observed in network traffic for which there is no corresponding entry in the list of inventoried assets.
These uninventoried devices and services are highlighted in two dashboards:
softwarelogs to provide a summary of the known devices and services in the network. The Uninventoried Observed Services and Uninventoried Observed Hosts tables show services and hosts (by IP address) that weren’t found when searched via the NetBox API.
This feature was implemented as described in idaholab/Malcolm#133.
The purpose of an asset management system is to document the intended state of a network: were Malcolm to actively and agressively populate NetBox with the live network state, a network configuration fault could result in an incorrect documented configuration. The Malcolm development team is investigating what data, if any, should automatically flow to NetBox based on traffic observed (enabled via the
NETBOX_CRON environment variable in
docker-compose.yml), and what NetBox inventory data could be used, if any, to enrich Malcolm’s network traffic metadata. Well-considered suggestions in this area are welcome.
The NetBox database may be backed up and restored using
./scripts/netbox-restore, respectively. While Malcolm is running, run the following command from within the Malcolm installation directory to backup the entire NetBox database:
$ ./scripts/netbox-backup NetBox configuration database saved to ('malcolm_netbox_backup_20230110-133855.gz', 'malcolm_netbox_backup_20230110-133855.media.tar.gz')
To clear the existing NetBox database and restore a previous backup, run the following command (substituting the filename of the
netbox_….gz you wish to restore) from within the Malcolm installation directory while Malcolm is running:
./scripts/netbox-restore --netbox-restore ./malcolm_netbox_backup_20230110-125756.gz
Note that some of the data in the NetBox database is cryptographically signed with the value of the
SECRET_KEY environment variable in the
./netbox/env/netbox.env environment file. A restored NetBox backup will not work if this value is different from when it was created.