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Re: NSE console script help
From: Martin Holst Swende <martin () swende se>
Date: Tue, 18 Jan 2011 21:30:52 +0100

On 01/18/2011 08:56 PM, Patrick Donnelly wrote:
On Tue, Jan 18, 2011 at 2:27 PM, Martin Holst Swende <martin () swende se> wrote:
To make it even more useful, as I see it, would be if I was able to
say:"nmap foobar.com --script=!default --script-args=help", i.e,
"tell me about the scripts that I have the option to run here, but which
for some reason are not default". Perhaps this can
already be done?
I want to emphasize (because I think you may be confused) that there
are two conditions that a script must satisfy before being able to run
against this "foobar.com".

First, the script must match the category or filename (or directory)
given via the --script option. For you, if you want all the
non-default scripts, you can do this using the boolean operators via
"not default", or specifically "nmap foobar.com --script 'not default'

Second, the script must actually satisfy the rule against the host[:port].
Yes. My only confusion was why this worked:
 nmap --script="all" --script-args=help
However, I see now that it only print info about *broadcast* scripts in
default category. So no generic man-page
functionality... :(
In your example, I find a lot of opportunity for confusion. Many
scripts have the "option" to run against foobar.com but only those
that first match "not default" will be able to. Perhaps what you want
is, more formally, "which scripts that are not in the default category
would run against this host if I did a real scan". That is quite
That is exactly what I want.
nmap localhost -p80 --script="not default" --script-args=help
This now gives me information about some scripts that I might
have otherwise missed.
However, I don't think this is necessarily something that needs to be
in Nmap proper. One of the initial reasons for the rewrite of NSE core
was so that a user could in fact change how NSE runs (as you have done
in previous work). I like to think we encourage script writers to
change NSE to ease debugging work (or even add features). To me, this
falls under "debugging" and isn't necessarily needed. There are
instances where we have added debugging features that were in high
demand (stack traces come to mind). Maybe this is also worthwhile to
add as well.

I don't think it is 'debugging', to me it is contextual help. The context
being my current scan and the services found. Perhaps I am
misunderstanding you.

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