Some of my thoughts on this
Well after some sleepless nights, poor meals and hard work #TryHarder I am glad to say that I officially passed the OSCP challenge it was a challenge I do say really got me into researching lot’s and I do mean lot’s of enumeration that is the of this cause a wide attack range that you have is awesome just imagine having many options on attacking a network because you did your enumeration correctly.
Well to say here on the OSCP by now everyone knows that it comes in 3 plans a 30, 60 and 90 days I would recommend a 60 day that is like the most standard one but since I have very small pockets I started with 30 days and boy believe me if I could I would go for 60 days the time!!! the time!! that you have to put into this so you can attack and enumerate in the beginning I was starting with 1 box every 3 days or so I knew i wasn’t going to get all of them but after a lot of practicing that time went to 1 box every 1.5 days and that was amazing to feel something that I could really give a tip on is if you are already decent in the field DO sign up for HackTheBox it helps a lot if I do say so you have to be ready on giving up social life to do what I did in 30 days. The oscp course comes with more than 8+ Videos and a 300+ PDF file with a water mark of your personal information just in case you wanted to share cough!! cough!! but well they realyy go into detail in some of these attacks and ways into enumeration but still the knowledge they offer is a step into the door of pen-testing as you will need to do most of the research yourself if this sounds annoying well it seems that pen-testing is not for you as this is 95% enumeration and the rest in attacks and so but if this is you than go for it!!
The labs are split into 3 networks the Public Dept. the IT Dept. and the Admin Dept. if by attacking the public dept. you will manage to get into the others there these files named proof.txt where you can actually prove that you managed to get into the system as admin or root and then by searching you will get a networks-secrets.txt file that will grant you access to the other networks Pivoting is your best friend here these boxes are way different than other since they are real world scenarios that our friends from Offsec had to deeal with in there time of pen-testing, don’t get me wrong VulnHub and HTB will help you but don’t expect hint’s that you see in CTF boxes they are still great in there own way, these boxes you will notice that some of them are vulnerable to the same exploit but they are still vulnerable to other things that it’s your job to find out there is so many ways to attack a box, sometimes you will be tempted with using metasploit as it’s forbidden in the Exam you can only use it once on 1 box as many times as you want but if you use it again its an automatic FAIL so be wise and learn how to do the attacks manually using searchsploit and all of th exploit-db database and GitHub those are really great helpers
Aah the great exam part it’s really simple you assign a date for the exam and 15 min prior you will connect to a proctor he/she will be watching you to make sure you are not CHEATING on your test and other sorts of useful info that can help offsec in the future they will help you with stuff like troubleshooting or any other questions not RELATED to the exam as they will give you a link to talk to the admins in case you have any troubles you will receive a VPN connection at the beginning of your test a password and Objectives for the boxes you will need to attack and 24 hours to do so, do not worry if you have no idea what to do they are pretty self-explanatory they are all designated with points and you will need 70 points to pass the test 4 of them are normal pen-testing and one will be a BOF that you will need to create and get SYSTEM I once checked that you will get 1/2 points if you don’t get root but only a user shell but I have no idea how that works your objective is to have the highest privileges on a box and then make a report out of it. The report is the boring part but hey it is what it tales to be a pen-tester also I keep seeing that people send crazy amounts like 300 or 400 pages!! well if that’s you go for it man mine was a sorry amount of under 80 pages but I used a different format as the one recommended you will find your own way to file a report after uploading your report and finishing the exam you have another 24 hours to send it and get them results after 3 business after the long wait that I was dealing with probably less but the nerves were killer man I finally received that amazing email that I passed and started the weekend with a smile!!
To finish of this boring POST I will just say that offsec is amazing at there course and really helpful during the times of your course they even have an IRC Channel if you want to chat with other students you know sometimes attacking it yourself is not the way to go you will learn new ways to see and enumerate boxes its amazing the people are awesome really helpful and glad to learn with you along the way some tips that I would recommend are:
- ENUMERATE!!! EVERYTHING!!!!
- Learn as much as you can Web application and Network Protocols
- Nmap is your Best friend
- Make a cheat-sheet they help a lot so you can copy and paste commands
- Don’t depend much on metasploit, it’s great but just a lifeline on the exam
- Google is your other best friend
- Try Harder!!!
And don’t be afraid to ask questions, get stuck, join forums there are great people out there that are more than willing to help and not spoil the fun cause it,s all bout “THE JOURNEY, NOT THE GOAL”
“To my friends that are still on the OSCP and those who already passed, Thanks for the help and good luck!!”