OverTheWire Bandit Walkthrough Part 1 – Level 0 – 5

This time the first IT-Security related article. In this first part of the OverTheWire Bandit Walkthrough, I will help you get through the challenges.

The OverTheWire Bandit exercises are geared towards beginners and it’s a great to start your journey into penetration testing or ethical hacking (this will be one of the few times you hear me mentioning “ethical hacking”, I really don’t like the term, let’s use the term white hat hacking instead…).

The prerequisites for this exercise are that you got an installed version of Linux or a terminal simulator like putty.

Let’s head over the OverTheWire and get started.

I will use Linux Mint for those exercises. Please remember to write down the passwords for each level, in case you want to continue later, otherwise, you have to start from the beginning again.

Level 0

SSH into Bandit 0 via terminal

ssh bandit.labs.overthewire.org -l bandit0

Confirm the warning with yes and enter the password


That’s it, first challenge done. Now you know how to connect to a server via SSH.

Level 0 – Level 1

The password is stored in a file named readme in the home directory.


The readme file is there

cat readme

You can read the password to the next level.


Level 1 – Level 2

ssh bandit.labs.overthewire.org -l bandit1

Enter password


The password for the next level is stored in a file called located in the home directory.

cat -

won’t work for dashed filenames. We have to use this command instead:

cat /home/bandit1/-



Level 2 – Level 3

Log in to level 2

ssh bandit.labs.overthewire.org -l bandit2

The password for the next level is stored in a file called spaces in this filename located in the home directory.

Same as with the dashed filename, we need to include the path to cat.

cat /home/bandit2/spaces\ in\ this\ filename

The password for level 3 is revealed


Level 3 – Level 4

Log in to Bandit3.

The password for the next level is stored in a hidden file in the inhere directory.


Shows us nothing. We need to use

ls -A

instead to reveal the file .hidden

cat ~/inhere/.hidden

reveals the password to level 4.


Level 4 – Level 5

Log in to Level 4 using the credentials from the last step.

The password for the next level is stored in the only human-readable file in the inhere directory. Tip: if your terminal is messed up, try the “reset” command.

So there are multiple ways to do that, one approach would have been to use

cat ~/inhere/-file*

Which would return a lot of garbage but also the password.

There’s a little hint, it says “…the only human-readable file..” so we should be able to somehow find the human-readable file. We can find it using

find /home/bandit4/inhere/ | xargs file | grep text

This will show us the only human readable file in this folder including ASCII Text, which is -file07.

cat ~/inhere/-file07

reveals the password to Level 5


Level 5 – Level 6

Connect to Bandit5

The password for the next level is stored in a file somewhere under the inhere directory and has all of the following properties: – human-readable – 1033 bytes in size – not executable

So this time we got more variables to the equation. The file is human readable, 1033 bytes in size and not executable.

Also, it is stored in one of many folders inside of ~/inhere/

If we just use the find command of our last exercise, we will now get many human-readable files returned, so we need to be more specific in our search.

For this task we can use:

find /home/bandit5/inhere/ -type f -size 1033c

The size-suffix c means bytes. In this case, we get the correct file displayed. If there would be more files with exactly the same size of 1033, we could utilize the command from the exercise before like this

find /home/bandit5/inhere/ -type f -size 1033c |xargs file | grep text

So we could sort out only human-readable text files as well.

The file we are searching for hides here:


A cat reveals the password to Level 6


To be continued…..



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