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Metasploit on Windows
From: cbyrd01 at gmail.com (Chris Byrd)
Date: Wed, 17 Jan 2007 18:09:41 -0600

I'd vote for dropping it.  I'd guess that nearly all security pros use
Linux, even if only in a VM.  I'm surprised you'd continue to support
running on cygwin at all.  Hopefully dropping support for cygwin will
free up dev resources for bigger and better things, and allow you to
implement features that might not work otherwise.


- Chris

On 1/17/07, H D Moore <hdm at metasploit.com> wrote:
Hi everyone,

We have been struggling to properly support Windows since the early days
of 2.0. Cygwin has done a decent job so far, but software
incompatibilities and Cygwin version mismatches have caused a ton of
problems for some of our users. The Cygwin installer requires a ton of
disk space and is a huge drain our bandwidth (+100Gb/mo).

With Metasploit 3, we wanted to provide a native Windows version of the
Framework. There has been little progress on this front, due to the main
user interface (msfconsole) depending on libreadline and libreadline
being a broken mess on Windows.

In the last year, there have been a number of free virtualization
environments available to the public. VMWare has released VMWare Player
and VMWare Server, Microsoft is giving away copies of VirtualPC, Xen is
becoming more popular, and VirtualBox has released their source as GPL.
Both Intel and AMD have virtualization features built into their latest
processors and the new version of Windows Server will support native
virtualization. On the distribution side, BackTrack (from
remote-exploit.org) is really kicking ass and provides a ready-to-run
environment for both version of the Framework.

So, given the stability issues with the Metasploit Cygwin release, and the
wide availability of free virtualization software and OS images, would
anyone mind if we drop support for the pre-packed Windows installer of
the Metasploit Framework?

If we go this route, we will still support Metasploit running on top of
Cygwin, but we will not support Cygwin itself or offer a pre-packaged
Cygwin environment. We may offer custom live CDs or virtual machine
images for download, but these would not be immediately available. Our
current documentation (hah!) for using the Windows version will become a
list of methods for loading up Metasploit in a virtualized environment.

If you think this is a horrible idea, keep in mind that the technically
adept can still install Metasploit into their own Cygwin environment, and
that the less adept will be able to download ready-to-run virtual machine
images sometime in the future.

Please reply with your opinion on this (good or bad), we realize quite a
few people depend on the Windows installer.



PS. Yes, we still plan on releasing 3.0 "soon" :-) With any luck we can
have the final release completed  in February.

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