etter.conf - Ettercap configuration file
etter.conf is the configuration file that determines ettercap
behaviour. It is always loaded at startup and it configures some
attributes used at runtime.
The file contains entries of the form:
entry = value
Each entry defines a variable that can be customized. Every value MUST
be an integer. Sections are used only to group together some variables.
NOTE: if you omit a variable in the conf file, it will be initialized
with the value 0. It is strongly discouraged to not initialize critical
variables such as "arp_poison_delay" or "connection_timeout".
The following is a list of available variables:
ec_uid This variable specifies the UID to which privileges
are dropped at startup. After the socket at link
layer has been opened the privileges are dropped to
a specific uid different from root for security
reasons. etter.conf is the only file that is read
with root privs. Be sure that the specified uid has
enough privs to read other files (etter.*) You can
bypass this variable by setting the environment
arp_storm_delay The value represents the milliseconds to wait
between two consecutive packets during the initial
ARP scan. You can increment this value to be less
aggressive at startup. The randomized scan plus a
high delay can fool some types of ARP scan
arp_poison_warm_up When the poisoning process starts, the inter-packet
delay is low for the first 5 poisons (to be sure
the poisoning process has been successful). After
the first 5 poisons, the delay is incremented (to
keep up the poisoning). This variable controls the
delay for the first 5 poisons. The value is in
The same delay is used when the victims are
restored to the original associations (RE-ARPing)
when ettercap is closed.
arp_poison_delay This variable controls the poisoning delay after
the first 5 poisons. The value is expressed in
seconds. You can increase this value (to try to
fool the IDS) up to the timeout of the ARP cache
(which depends on the poisoned operating system).
arp_poison_icmp Enable the sending of a spoofed ICMP message to
force the targets to make an arp request. This will
create an arp entry in the host cache, so ettercap
will be able to win the race condition and poison
the target. Useful against targets that don’t
accept gratuitous arp if the entry is not in the
arp_poison_reply Use ARP replies to poison the targets. This is the
arp_poison_request Use ARP request to poison the targets. Useful
against targets that cache even arp request values.
Set this option to 0 if you want to skip the
poisoning of two hosts with the same mac address.
This may happen if a NIC has one or more aliases on
the same network.
dhcp_lease_time This is the lease time (in seconds) for a dhcp
assignment. You can lower this value to permit the
victims to receive a correct dhcp reply after you
have stopped your attack. Using higher timeouts can
seriously mess up your network after the attack has
finished. On the other hand some clients will
prefer a higher lease time, so you have to increase
it to win the race condition against the real
port_steal_delay This is the delay time (in milliseconds) between
stealing packets for the "port" mitm method. With
low delays you will be able to intercept more
packets, but you will generate more traffic. You
have to tune this value in order to find a good
balance between the number of intercepted packets,
re-transmitted packets and lost packets. This
value depends on full/half duplex channels, network
drivers and adapters, network general configuration
This is the delay time (in microseconds) between
packets when the "port" mitm method has to re-send
packets queues. As said for port_steal_delay you
have to tune this option to the lowest acceptable
connection_timeout Every time a new connection is discovered, ettercap
allocates the needed structures. After a
customizable timeout, you can free these structures
to keep the memory usage low. This variable
represents this timeout. The value is expressed in
seconds. This timeout is applied even to the
session tracking system (the protocol state machine
connection_idle The number of seconds to wait before a connection
is marked as IDLE.
connection_buffer This variable controls the size of the buffer
linked to each connection. Every sniffed packet is
added to the buffer and when the buffer is full the
older packets are deleted to make room for newer
ones. This buffer is useful to view data that went
on the cable before you select and view a specific
connection. The higher this value, the higher the
ettercap memory occupation. By the way, the buffer
is dynamic, so if you set a buffer of 100.000 byte
it is not allocated all together at the first
packet of a connection, but it is filled as packets
connect_timeout The timeout in seconds when using the connect()
syscall. Increase it if you get a "Connection
timeout" error. This option has nothing to do with
connections sniffed by ettercap. It is a timeout
for the connections made by ettercap to other hosts
(for example when fingerprinting remote host).
sampling_rate Ettercap keeps some statistics on the processing
time of the bottom half (the sniffer) and top half
(the protocol decoder). These statistics are made
on the average processing time of sampling_rate
packets. You can decrease this value to have a more
accurate real-time picture of processing time or
increase it to have a smoother picture. The total
average will not change, but the worst value will
be heavily influenced by this value.
close_on_eof When reading from a dump file and using console or
daemon UI, this variable is used to determine what
action has to be done on EOF. It is a boolean
value. If set to 1 ettercap will close itself
(useful in scripts). Otherwise the session will
continue waiting for user input.
store_profiles Ettercap collects in memory a profile for each host
it detects. Users and passwords are collected
there. If you want to run ettercap in background
logging all the traffic, you may want to disable
the collecting in memory to save system memory. Set
this option to 0 (zero) to disable profiles
collection. A value of 1 will enable collection
for all the hosts, 2 will collect only local hosts
and 3 only remote hosts (a host is considered
remote if it does not belong to the netmask).
Some dissectors (such as SSH and HTTPS) need to
modify the payload of the packets in order to
collect passwords and perform a decryption attack.
If you want to disable the "dangerous" dissectors
all together, set this value to 0.
skip_forwarded If you set this value to 0 you will sniff even
packets forwarded by ettercap or by the kernel. It
will generate packets duplicates in conjuction with
arp mitm method (for example). It could be useful
while running ettercap in unoffensive mode on a
host with more than one network interface (waiting
for the multiple-interface feature...)
checksum_warning If you set the value to 0 the messages about
incorrect checksums will not be displayed in the
user messages windows (nor logged to a file with
Note that this option won’t disable the check on
the packets, but only prevent the message to be
displayed (see below).
checksum_check This option is used to completely disable the check
on the checksum of the packets that ettercap
receives. The check on the packets is performed to
avoid ettercap spotting thru bad checsum packets
(see Phrack 60.12). If you disable the check, you
will be able to sniff even bad checksummed packet,
but you will be spotted if someone is searching for
protocol_name This value represents the port on which the
protocol dissector has to be bound. A value of 0
will disable the dissector. The name of the
variable is the same of the protocol name. You can
specify a non standard port for each dissector as
well as multiple ports. The syntax for multiport
selection is the following: port1,port2,port3,...
NOTE: some dissectors are conditionally compiled .
This means that depending on the libraries found in
your system some dissectors will be enabled and
some others will not. By default etter.conf
contains all supported dissectors. if you got a
"FATAL: Dissector "xxx" does not exists (etter.conf
line yy)" error, you have to comment out the yy
line in etter.conf.
color You can customize the colors of the curses GUI.
Simply set a field to one of the following values
and look at the GUI aspect :)
Here is a list of values: 0 Black, 1 Red, 2 Green,
3 Yellow, 4 Blue, 5 Magenta, 6 Cyan, 7 White
utf8_encoding specifies the encoding to be used while displaying
the packets in UTF-8 format. Use the ‘iconv
--list‘ command for a list of supported encodings.
remote_broswer This command is executed by the remote_browser
plugin each time it catches a good URL request into
an HTTP connection. The command should be able to
get 2 parameters:
%host the Host: tag in the HTTP header. Used to
create the full request into the browser.
%url The page requested inside the GET request.
redir_command_on You have to provide a valid command (or script) to
enable tcp redirection at kernel level in order to
be able to use SSL dissection. Your script should
be able to get 3 parameters:
%iface The network interface on which the rule must
%port The source port of the packets to be
redirected (443 for HTTPS, 993 for imaps,
%rport The internally bound port to which ettercap
listens for connections.
NOTE: this script is executed with an execve(), so you can’t use pipes
or output redirection as if you were in a shell. We suggest you to make
a script if you need those commands.
redir_command_off This script is used to remove the redirect rules
applied by ’redir_command_on’. You should note
that this script is called atexit() and thus it has
not high privileges. You should provide a setuid
program or set ec_uid to 0 in order to be sure that
the script is executed successfully.
ettercap(8) ettercap_curses(8) ettercap_plugins(8) etterlog(8)