NTV ERP to Determine What is Starting a Service During Boot

AtlBo

Level 26
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Dec 29, 2014
Messages
1,512
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Qihoo 360
#1
SMSvcHost.exe started running on boot on a system I am trying to get cleaned up and set up properly for more use. Not sure when it started autostarting as I haven't been looking over Task Manager as much as on the main system. Also, when I do look over TM I don't see all the processes unless I select "Show processes from all Users". Haven't been doing that much on this system. BTW, running on an admin account, and I would like to begin the march to SUA. Think it might take a while for this project. Maybe 2 weeks I guess.

One quick question before the rest. This system get its internet connection via ethernet with a wi-fi connected desktop next to it. Could this be why port sharing is running? I can't find a reference for this on Google.

Here is the rest. If the above is true, please disregard below.

SMSvcHost.exe starts I believe via a service called NetTcpPortSharing. The service is set to manual, but something seems to be starting the service on boot, so I wanted to find out what. This is mainly because I don't see it running on any other systems. So I added the location of SMSvcHost.exe to the vulnerables list of NVT ERP, hoping I could get some information on an alert or in the log. I also scanned the list of allowed processes to see if it was allowed so I could delete the entry if so. Then I scanned the list of allowed command lines to see if I could find anything that might indicate it was starting SMSvcHost.exe. Didn't see anything, so I rebooted to see if NVT ERP would alert when the SMSvcHost.exe tried to run. No luck...no alert. I would love to have some idea of why there is no alert if anyone thinks they might know. Location of SMSvcHost.exe:

C:\Windows\Microsoft.NET\Framework64\v4.0.30319\SMSvcHost.exe

Best information I could find on port sharing:

Net.TCP Port Sharing

Didn't help me much.

This system is kind of a mess. I have Wireshark on the system attempting to learn to capture packets and analyze them and so on and several other tools like SpyStudio, which is a nice application for capturing real-time run-time activities of a process. I feel like I am learning to a significant degree with these applications, but at the same time, they introduce some complicating and somewhat unknown elements to me. Example is WinPcap with Wireshark. I don't know anything about WinPcap except that it is required to capture with Wireshark. I really need to update software on the PC too. It hasn't been used as much as the main, and so I will be working on that too.

Thx for any help...
 

AtlBo

Level 26
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Dec 29, 2014
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Qihoo 360
#2
Think I may have begun to resolve this. When I installed ERP, I turned off "Allow safe Windows processes" which I thought was enough for the vulnerables list to create an alert. However, I realized I had trusted vendors on. Turned it off and booted and got the alert. Turns out it started itself which I guess means something set a registry key for it to turn (the service which starts the proces) on so it could use the port sharing.

Checked to see if the ethernet tether to another PC for connecting to the internet might be the reason SMSvcHost.exe starts. Disconnected and left it disconnected through two boots and SMSH.exe still started, so idk. Inconclusive, but looks like an installer along the way probably made a change I guess to the registry or to tasks.

Suspects:
SpyShelter->recent install led to boot crash (registry corruption) and reimage from a VERY recent image to fix
Wireshark or WinPcap (required for WS captures)->installed a long time ago so I don't think so. Not sure however. Haven't been using the PC very much to have noticed when this started.

Otherwise, idk, but I think there must be a registry key set to turn on the service during boot. Already ran an in place repair installation of Windows (upgrade installation). Didn't solve this that's for sure. Don't know if it was already present, but I haven't installed much since the restore a few days ago. Can't seem to find the answer in Autoruns, but maybe I can turn up something later. BTW, the image could potentially contain corruption from SpyShelter (even after repair install). Next good image is very old, so...

sfc shows no errors :)

Thx for looking :)
 
Likes: shmu26

AtlBo

Level 26
Verified
Joined
Dec 29, 2014
Messages
1,512
Antivirus
Qihoo 360
#3
Solved with Autoruns. Had to uncheck "Hide Windows entries" to see the Windows startups in the services area. Unchecked the ones that don't shart by default (in pics) and SMSvcHost.exe didn't start on boot. Some pics below if anyone is interested.

I like NVT ERP for this kind of hunt for rogue processes. Don't know why setting SMSvcHost.exe to Vulnerable didn't trump the Trusted Vendors on setting. I'm sure Andreas has his reasons for doing it that way. Running in Alert mode not lockdown, and I don't know if the alert would have popped on lockdown. Nothing beats Autoruns for getting to the bottom of things with startups though.

I suspect when I was beginning to work with Wireshark I enabled a monitoring element of the program that may have changed this setting. I may have been seeking to see if there was any traffic on the protocol. The 6-20-2015 date is about 6 months after I installed Wireshark. SpyShelter is off the hook for sure.

System is starting to come around now that everything runs as desired with UAC on. Now I can focus on creating SUA. Thx again for looking...

Mystery Run on Boot net.TCP.Port Sharing Start These or Not.png SMSvcHost EXE NetTcpPortSharing.png Startup Entry Created 6-20-15.png Autoruns Uncheck Startups.png SMSvcHost EXE Gone.png
 
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