Home Blog Page 3

Solar car: German-Tunisian start-up develops small solar vans

0

The German-Tunisian start-up Bako Motors has developed a solar cell van that could represent an alternative to classic e-cars. The solar car called “Quorax” should be of particular interest for delivery services and has a range of up to 200 kilometers.

Especially when we drive to the petrol pump these days, one fact becomes particularly clear: we cannot rely on conventionally powered engines forever and ever. Because that makes no economic or environmental sense. Therefore, solutions for electromobility are more in demand than ever.

One more reason why more and more small start-ups are springing up that take advantage of this fact. One of these is Bako Motors. The German-Tunisian start-up wants to put small electric vehicles on the roads worldwide. The idea for this came about on a bicycle.

The roads of the future belong to electromobility

Boubaker Siala and his son Ibrahim actually only wanted to convert their own bike to an e-bike during the corona pandemic. However, the process was so easy for the two of them that they immediately developed a solar-powered van.

This was given the name Qorax and is on three wheels. The solar car has a battery and also promises a range of around 200 kilometers with solar power – provided the sun plays along. Because solar panels are installed on the roof of the Qorax, which also charge the battery while driving.

And if the sun doesn’t shine, the solar small transporter can alternatively be charged at the socket. Charging takes time noisy Bako Motors around two hours.

Solar car: Qorax as a cheap alternative to the electric car?

The special thing about the vehicle is the simplicity of the construction. This saves not only material but also time and therefore reduces costs. The first version should only cost 4,400 euros and could be suitable for metropolises worldwide. The solar car is to be manufactured in a first step in Tunisia. From there the Qorax are to be exported to Germany and other countries.

The market launch is planned for the end of 2022, and the response and feedback on the vehicle should lay the foundation for another vehicle. Because 2023 Boubaker Siala is already planning the next model, this time with four wheels. The Qorax (in German “Sun” or “Sun God”) can already be pre-ordered.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2022/03/26/solarauto-start-up-kleintransporter/

Elon Musk agrees with EU on content rules for Twitter

0

The tech billionaire wants to allow Donald Trump back on the platform. Also: Coinbase reports a drop in sales and Apple is discontinuing the iPod.

Musk criticizes Twitter for banning too much fundamentally legal content from the platform.
Stanislav Kogiku/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Good Morning! While you slept, work continued elsewhere in the digital scene.

The top topics:

Elon Musk, which wants to take over Twitter, accepts the EU’s Digital Services Act (DSA). EU Commissioner Thierry Breton had previously explained the new, strict law to the Tesla boss. Musk said he agrees with everything Breton said. “We pretty much agree,” Musk said in a joint video with the EU Commissioner. The tech billionaire sees no contradiction in his plans for more freedom of speech with the strict rules of the EU.

The DSA is intended to ensure that illegal content such as hate speech is removed from the Internet more quickly. In addition, it aims to ensure that harmful disinformation is shared less and fewer counterfeit products are sold on online marketplaces. Meanwhile, in an interview at the Financial Times’ Future of the Car summit, Musk said he would reverse Donald Trump’s Twitter ban: “I think that was a mistake because it alienated a large part of the country .” [Mehr bei Handelsblatt, Wall Street Journal, CNBC und Techcrunch]

On Gründerszene you read today: Gethenry successfully rents e-bikes to delivery services such as Gorillas, Flink and Lieferheld. The startup usually rents out its e-bikes for twelve to 36 months. With new millions in the seed round, it is now developing its own bikes. [Mehr bei Gründerszene]

And here are the other headlines of the night:

The turnover of Coinbase has shrunk by 27 percent in the first quarter compared to the previous year. This is due to the low trading volume amid the collapse in cryptocurrency prices: Trading volume fell by 8 percent from the same period in 2021. While the number of monthly trading users rose 51 percent year-on-year to 9.2 million, that number fell 19 percent from last quarter. Shares of Coinbase closed 13 percent lower ahead of the Q1 earnings report, taking the stock to an all-time low. Shares fell another 15 percent in after-hours trading. [Mehr bei CNBC und The Information]

Apple sets the iPod. The iPod Touch is the only version of the portable music player that is still sold. According to Apple, it will be available while supplies last. The latest version of the iPod Touch was introduced in 2019. Since its introduction in 2001, the iPod has taken on many competing music players. The iPod became less popular since smartphones became mainstream and the iPod experienced a lack of updates. [Mehr bei Reuters, Axios, Wall Street Journal und CNBC]

The $1 billion venture arm of the private investment platform Republic is reportedly in talks to raise $700 million for two new crypto-focused funds. These are a $200 million flagship venture fund and a $500 million crypto fund. The venture fund will set aside 20 percent of its capital for investments in cryptocurrency tokens, while the other 80 percent will go to equity investments in Web3, fintech, and deep tech. Republic Capital has invested in over 100 companies since its inception in 2019. [Mehr bei Techcrunch]

Investments: Chainalysis, which sells crypto fraud tracking services, has closed a $170 million Series F round, according to The Information. The New York company is valued at $8.6 billion. Singapore’s sovereign wealth fund GIC and an existing investor led the round, according to an insider. The new fundraising comes amid a sharp cryptocurrency sell-off. Faire, which has built a marketplace connecting retailers with indie brands, has raised an additional $416 million in an expansion of its Series G funding. With the additional capital, Faire is now valued at $12.59 billion, according to the company. This brings the total of Series G funding to $816 million. [Mehr bei The Information und Techcrunch]

Nintendo expects fewer sales of its Switch games console in the future. For the fiscal year running until the end of March 2023, the video game manufacturer expects 21 million devices to be sold. The company also announced a 10-for-1 stock split, effective October 1. Nintendo stock is up 5 percent year-to-date. [Mehr bei Handelsblatt und Wall Street Journal]

Our reading tip on Gründerszene: Investments in the German startup scene are booming. German VCs distributed around 17 billion euros last year. we tell you Which German VCs most often invest in startups. [Mehr bei Gründerszene]

Don’t want to miss anything? Then subscribe to our Gründerszene newsletter! It appears every morning at 8:30 a.m. and brings you all the important news straight to your inbox.

Happy Wednesday!

Your Gründerszene editors

Source: https://www.businessinsider.de/gruenderszene/business/elon-musk-bei-inhaltsregeln-fuer-twitter-einer-meinung-mit-der-eu/

The good news of the week

0

In the “Good News” we present positive news from this week. We focus on the topics of technology, social media, marketing and business. Our good news this week: Rising pensions, chronological Instagram feed, right off the bat, fast internet and charging an e-car in just three minutes.

Natural disasters, scandals and extremism: Bad news often evokes stronger emotions than good news. In addition, they are remembered for longer. This is the conclusion of a study by an international team of experts, which was published in the scientific journal PNAS.

But bad news is also good for business. Because they attract more attention. In our “Good News” series, we would therefore like to regularly present you with positive news from the previous week that may have been lost. The update for the fourth week of March 2022.

Charging an e-car in just three minutes

Charging an e-car takes much longer than refueling a combustion engine. But that could change soon. Scientists from South Korea are researching a method to charge electric cars faster using quantum physics and to speed up the charging process.

The researchers emphasize that every electric car battery consists of many small cells that are usually charged in parallel. However, with quantum technology, it is possible for the cells to influence each other’s charge level so that they charge faster.

According to the scientists, charging a battery with around 200 cells at a normal charging station would take around ten hours. However, with the right design and quantum physics, this time can be reduced to around three minutes.

Charging an e-car would then be almost as quick as refueling a combustion engine. Until then, however, numerous calculations and tests are still necessary, because the results of the South Korean researchers are only theoretical so far.

Right to fast internet

Fast internet connections are mostly reserved for people living in big cities. But in the countryside, the complete opposite often prevails. However, the so-called right to fast internet should provide a remedy from June 1, 2022.

This emerges from a draft by the Federal Network Agency. However, the minimum bandwidth of 10 Mbit/s in the download and 1.3 Mbit/s in the upload proposed in the draft calls for criticism, who describe the regulation as an alibi regulation.

The Federal Network Agency in turn emphasizes that the previous determination is only the beginning and should be reviewed every year. However, before the ordinance can come into force on June 1, it must first be passed by the digital committee of the Bundestag. The Federal Council still has to agree.

Pensions will rise by up to six percent

On July 1, 2022, pensions in the old federal states will increase by 5.35 percent. In the new federal states, pensions will even increase by 6.12 percent. This was announced by the German pension insurance in an official statement.

This increases the current pension value in the old federal states from 34.19 euros to 36.02 euros and in the new federal states from 33.47 euros to 35.52 euros. Gundula Roßbach, President of the German Pension Insurance Association, explained:

Pensions will rise significantly this year. There will be one of the highest pension adjustments in Germany since the introduction of pension insurance. This will mitigate the high price increase expected this year for the 21 million pensioners.

Instagram unlocks chronological feed options

In late 2021, Instagram CEO Adam Mosseri announced that the chronological feed would return. At the beginning of January 2022, the platform will start the test phase for two corresponding new feed options. Instagram has now released the chronological feed view across the board.

The “Following” and “Favorites” functions are intended to give users more control over the content displayed. With the “Favorites” option, users can highlight marked accounts in their feed. With the help of the “Following” function, users should be able to sort the posts from all accounts they follow in a chronological order.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2022/03/27/good-news-kw9-2022-e-auto-laden/

British start-up develops invisible camouflage shield

0

A British start-up claims to have designed a camouflage shield that makes people invisible. The developers are now looking for financial support to complete the project. The backgrounds.

The British start-up Invisibility Shield Co. claims to have invented a camouflage shield that makes you invisible. On the crowd funding website Kickstarter the developers have now started a project to promote camouflage shield production and sell their product worldwide.

According to the Kickstarter project description, the start-up based in London has already produced 25 shields.

The inventors describe the sign as big enough to hide several people. In addition, the camouflage shield is free-standing and portable and does not require a power source. In addition, it only weighs around four kilograms and is made from fully recyclable materials.

How does the camouflage shield work?

Lenses are arranged vertically across the board on each sign, which reflect the light falling on them horizontally. At the same time, the light reflected from the background is much brighter and wider, making it appear as if the object or person is disappearing behind the shield.

In a video, the inventors demonstrate how the camouflage shield works. It can be seen that people who are behind the sign are actually not recognizable or visible.

However, the sign itself still stands out from the real background, as it makes it look slightly blurred. In addition, the surface of the shield appears milky.

“The shields work best against even backgrounds such as foliage, grass, rendered walls, sand, sky, and asphalt,” the developers write on Kickstarter. If the viewer is unaware of the sign’s presence, the trick might well work.

Production out of impatience

If you search for information about the Invisibility Shield on YouTube, you will find many results about the technology. Among numerous test videos and media reports there are also content creators who have tried to produce a corresponding product themselves.

The general mass of reports also inspired the inventors of the camouflage shield. According to their own statements, however, they were disappointed by the stagnation of developments in 2020, so that the Invisibility Shield team felt compelled to produce their own prototype.

The team now offers their camouflage shield in two sizes. It should be available from as little as £50.

Not the first chance to disappear

Back in 2019, various media reported about a Canadian company called Hyperstealth. The company therefore developed an invisibility film. This was initially intended for use in the military or by the police.

Similar to the English shield, there are many lenses next to each other on this invisibility film. These deflect the light in such a way that objects behind the film are enlarged and thus stretched out. As a side effect, this makes objects behind the slide disappear.

Unlike the film from Canada, however, the British camouflage shield is solely intended to hide users from the eyes of others. “The shield surfaces and supports are made of a flexible material. They were not designed to protect you from attacks and would not be useful in such situations,” the team wrote on Kickstarter.

Invisibility for everyone from December 2022

Invisibility Shield had originally envisaged a financing goal of around 6,000 euros. In the meantime, however, more than 650 supporters have already donated more than double the amount.

The British start-up wants to sell its camouflage shield worldwide as early as December of this year. According to the Kickstarter description, however, the exceptions are Russia and Belarus. The company does not want to deliver its camouflage shield to these two countries.

The reasons should be clear. After all, the motto of Invisibility Shield is “Surprise your friends. Avoid your enemies!”

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2022/03/28/tarnschild-unsichtbar/

What is the hype about the Moonswatch watch all about?

0

When the Swiss watch manufacturer Swatch was planning to join forces with its subsidiary Omega, it was not foreseeable that the reinterpretation of the Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch would trigger such a hype. At the end of March, sales of the new, so-called Moonswatch, began in the Swatch branches. Watch fans sometimes had to wait more than 15 hours in front of the branch to get hold of a brand on the first day of sale.
A short time later, numerous models were already being auctioned on action portals for prices between 700 and 1200 euros, which had been bought a few hours earlier at the actual selling price of “only” 250 euros.

Why is the Moonswatch so popular?

The new Moonswatch is a visual replica of the legendary Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch. It was the first watch to go into space on October 3rd, 1962. On July 21, 1969, it was the first wristwatch to successfully survive the moon landing. The Speedmaster model was subjected to numerous tests by NASA, in which the watch was exposed to weightlessness, strong magnetic fields, extreme shocks and vibrations as well as large temperature fluctuations from minus 18 to plus 93 degrees. It successfully withstood the tests and even mastered the spacewalk in 1965, during which it was exposed to the pure space conditions without any protection – and yet showed no impairments in its functionality.
Since then, the Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch has been considered the famous moon watch and is part of the astronauts’ standard equipment.

The standard version currently costs around 6600 euros depending on the equipment, the price increases by another 1000 euros.

With the announcement of the optical new edition, which technically has major differences to the real moon watch, the excitement also increased, because the new variant of the luxury watch was announced at a price of 250 euros and should therefore be significantly cheaper than the actual moon watch.

Omega Speedmaster Moonwatch
The new Moonswatch is a visual replica of the legendary Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch | Photo: or Gyorgy # 480175916 – stock.adobe.com

Where are the differences?

Although the Moonwatch and the almost identically named MoonSwatch look confusingly similar, there are significant differences. The case of the new MoonSwatch is made from the in-house ceramic mixture Biocermic, which consists of two-thirds ceramic and one-third plastic based on castor oil. The luxurious predecessor model, on the other hand, is made of stainless steel, sometimes even gold. What is special about the new MoonSwatch, however, are the different colors.
A total of eleven color models are available, each color representing a celestial body of the solar system, which is then also used for the respective model designation. For example, MoonSwatch models dedicated to Jupiter are called “Mission to Jupiter” and are beige in color with a beige and orange dial.

The watch is finally fixed to the wrist with a textile strap and Velcro fastener.

The inner workings of the new MoonSwatch also differ greatly from the original Moonwatch. A mechanical movement is used in the high-priced Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch, while a conventional battery-operated quartz movement was installed in the cloned MoonSwatch.

Nahaufnahme Speedmaster Professional Moonwatch
Although the Moonwatch and the almost identically named MoonSwatch look confusingly similar, there are significant differences | Photo: © Gyorgy # 480176322 – stock.adobe.com

Is the hype leveling off again?

The Swiss watch manufacturer Swatch can hardly explain the hype surrounding the new MoonSwatch, because it was openly communicated in advance that the watches are not limited edition goods and that sales will soon start in the online shop anyway. Nevertheless, the stocks were used up within a very short time on the first day of sale and the first advertisements for the Swatch MoonSwatch ended up on the Internet. In the meantime, the MoonSwatch models are traded at several thousand euros – and apparently also bought, although they are neither limited goods nor special models. The manufacturer Swatch also emphasized this several times.
Although no official start, let alone a date for online sales, has yet been announced, the watches should be available on the manufacturer’s website in the coming weeks.

Anyone who cannot muster the patience to start online sales will find what they are looking for on the Internet, but must reckon with price increases of several thousand euros.

Source: https://blogg.de/hype-rund-um-die-moonswatch-uhr/

Munich glove startup Proglove sold for a monster sum

0

Proglove supplies industrial groups with intelligent gloves, Volkswagen and Lufthansa use them, for example. Now a financial investor is buying the startup.

Founder Thomas Kirchner (left) with Proglove managing director and ex-Teamviewer boss Andreas König.
Proglove / Workaround GmbH

The Munich startup Proglove has apparently managed a remarkable exit. As the Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung (FAZ) reports, the Swedish private equity investor Nordic Capital is taking over the manufacturer of industrial wearables. According to the newspaper, the purchase contract is “freshly signed”, and Nordic Capital also confirmed the takeover when asked. According to FAZ information, Proglove was last valued at around 500 million euros. When asked by Gründerszene, a spokesman confirmed the exit, but did not want to comment on the sum. It was agreed not to disclose the exact amount of the stake. But it is a majority takeover.

Like many industry-related startups, Proglove flew under the radar for a long time. In the industry itself, the company, which was founded in 2014, is considered a flagship project for the possibilities of digitization: Proglove manufactures intelligent gloves that employees in production and logistics can use to work faster and more safely. Sensors and scanners in the glove, for example, recognize which components a worker is holding and whether they are being used correctly. According to the website, corporations such as DHL, Lufthansa, Volkswagen and Mediamarkt use the technology.

First prototype with iPod

The idea goes back to the founders Thomas Kirchner and Paul Günther. They made their first prototypes during their studies using a hardware store glove and an old iPod. “It couldn’t do anything technically, but it looked cool,” Kirchner once told Wirtschaftswoche. They were able to convince Intel, among others, with their concept: the US chip giant was one of the first investors in the startup. Proglove’s other backers include Bayern Kapital and Summit Partners. In total, more than 45 million euros flowed into the company.

read too

Facebook buys “Lion’s Den” startup Presize

According to the FAZ, there is a reason why a financial investor and not an industrial group is buying the start-up: Nordic Capital envisions a growth story on the scale of Teamviewer. In 2014, the financial investor Permira took over the Göppingen remote maintenance specialist and five years later successfully listed it on the stock exchange. This could now also be the case for Proglove. “That’s the plan, yes. The company really has the potential to get really big,” said Proglove boss Andreas König of the FAZ. König himself is no stranger: he was previously the CEO of Teamviewer.

Source: https://www.businessinsider.de/gruenderszene/technologie/proglove-exit-private-equity-handschuh-a/

Importance, benefits and providers [Anzeige]

0

For many website operators, the cost of hosting is the decisive point when it comes to deciding for or against a hoster. We will show you why hosting in Germany should not be ignored when making a decision.

What does hosting mean in Germany?

In order to be sure of whether the respective provider offers hosting in Germany, you can use two points as a guide: the location of the data centers and the location of the company headquarters. If both are located in Germany, hosting is usually available in Germany.

Because even if a German hosting provider has the data centers and the company headquarters abroad, the location of the company headquarters is decisive for the applicable law. This can be explained more easily using an example: For example, if your hoster has servers in Germany, but its company headquarters are in the USA, in the worst case the US government can also demand the release of data from German servers.

The EU is an exception here. The data protection certification is also an additional factor, which evaluates the level of data protection measures. The most common certifications include ISO 27001, IT-Grundschutz and PCI DSS.

What advantages do I have with hosting in Germany?

There are many different advantages that you have when choosing hosting in Germany. We present the most important ones below.

1st benefit: Security in data centers

Security in the data centers themselves should not be underestimated. If hosters neglect building security, this can lead to power failures and, in the worst case, to fires. At the same time, this has an impact on reliability, availability and security for customers.

German data centers usually take care of installing available fire protection measures, access control and the necessary technology to protect customer data in the event of a fire. In addition, many data centers have an on-site security guard who is permanently on duty.

2nd advantage: Strict data protection guidelines

Strict data protection rules have applied in Germany, especially since the GDPR came into force. So if a hoster operates the data centers in Germany, users do not have to worry about the GDPR. Because in these cases there is no data flow outside the EU.

3. Advantage: Good performance and better SEO ranking

With hosting in Germany, the distances to the servers are significantly shorter. As a result, users can also expect shorter loading times. This in turn has a positive impact on search engines. In the best-case scenario, hosting in Germany will ensure that your website ranks better in Google search results.

Google can also determine the server location of your website. This can also affect your Google ranking. For example, if a company based in Germany operates a website with German hosting, this speaks for relevance and added value in the eyes of Google. Among other things, potential customers can be reached more easily.

Hosting in Germany with Mittwald

Finding the right hoster for your hosting in Germany can be a challenge. For this reason we introduce you to Mittwald.

Mittwald is THE hosting partner for agencies and freelancers with a data center in Espelkamp, ​​East Westphalia. Web professionals can rely on the highest performance and security. And not only because of the latest hardware and certified security standards, but also because of the technicians who are on site 24/7 and can intervene in a matter of seconds in exceptional cases.

The Mittwald data center has been certified by TÜV Rheinland as a reliable data center (building security) and with ISO 27001 (information security).

The high single thread performance also ensures the fastest database queries and PHP script execution times at Mittwald. The multi-redundant fiber optic connection to internet nodes creates optimal latencies. In addition, Mittwald hosts your projects 100 percent climate-neutral.

If you are looking for a hoster for agencies and freelancers, where you not only get your hosting in Germany, but you can also rely on security and efficiency, Mittwald is the right partner.

Find out more about Mittwald here

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2022/03/28/hosting-in-deutschland-mittwald/

Spotify wants to limit its service in Russia

0

Spotify wants to limit its service in Russia. This was announced by a company spokesman for the streaming provider. The reason is a new Russian media law that criminalizes statements about the Ukraine war that deviate from the state’s representations.

Streaming provider Spotify announced in early March that the company wanted to close its offices in Russia indefinitely in response to the Ukraine war. The Swedish group has now announced that streaming services in Russia will also be restricted.

A company spokesman for Spotify told the news agency Reuters With. The reason for this is a new Russian media law that criminalizes statements about the Ukraine war that deviate from the state’s representations.

Spotify wants to pull the plug in Russia in early April

Due to the Russian sanctions and the withdrawal of numerous payment service providers such as PayPal, Spotify was no longer able to offer its paid version in full.

The company originally justified the whereabouts of its other streaming offerings, regardless of the Ukraine war, by wanting to maintain access to independent information.

However, the new Russian media law now classifies independent information as false information and criminalizes it. The streaming provider is therefore forced to discontinue its offer completely.

This also applies to the advertising-financed free version. According to Reuters, Spotify plans to discontinue its entire streaming offering in early April.

Netflix, Disney and Co. are also withdrawing

While Spotify continues to believe that access to independent news and information is critical, a company spokesman added:

Unfortunately, recent legislation that further restricts access to information, stifles free speech, and criminalizes certain types of messages is putting the safety of Spotify employees and potentially our listeners at risk.

Streaming providers Netflix and DisneyPlus had previously restricted their services in Russia. Tech giants like Apple and Google also withdrew. Russia also officially banned the social networks Instagram and Facebook after both platforms had previously partially restricted their service.

Also interesting:

Source: https://www.basicthinking.de/blog/2022/03/28/spotify-dienst-in-russland-einschraenken/

These devices always need electricity

0

In many situations in life it is essential to save electricity. However, the measure does not make sense for every electrical device.

Do not disconnect OLED televisions from the mains

For most electrical devices, the approach is actually important to separate the devices from the mains and not to waste energy unnecessarily in stand-by mode. This principle works best with switchable power strips. However, not every technical device can simply be separated from the network.

If the manufacturers of the devices do not recommend disconnecting from the mains, the producers usually refer to this in the operating instructions.

A good example is OLED TVs, which should always be left plugged in to allow the display to regenerate during the night.

Do not disconnect OLED televisions from the mains
Do not disconnect OLED televisions from the mains | Foto: © naka # 204234711 – stock.adobe.com

Tips for using WiFi routers

It is generally not a disadvantage for the WLAN router if it is disconnected from the network at night. Nevertheless, switching off the power is not absolutely necessary and may lead to unpleasant side effects. Today, for example, it is common for most landline phones to be connected to each other via the router.
If the device is disconnected from the network, no calls are possible during this time. To save electricity, it is sufficient to switch off the WLAN signals overnight. This deactivation works with most routers via a simple keystroke. Alternatively, it is possible to make a setting that automatically switches the WLAN module on at night and off again in the morning.

Tips for using WiFi routers
If the device is disconnected from the network, no calls are possible during this time | Foto: © Pixel-Shot #239323941 – stock.adobe.com

Steady power supply for inkjet printers

Another good example is inkjet printers. These devices should also not be unplugged from the power supply after each use.
Finally, every time the printers are disconnected from the mains and then switched on again, they start what is known as a print head cleaning run. This process uses so much ink that the cost of the ink exceeds the cost of the electricity saved.

Source: https://blogg.de/diese-geraete-benoetigen-stets-strom/

Cyberus Technology – Fun with Python and Tycho

0

This article demonstrates how simple it is to setup our analysis tool Tycho and plays with the Tycho Python API in order to outline its potential. We will pause and resume processes, read interesting process information, and inject errors using the Tycho Python API.

Tychowhich is the name of our live binary analysis tool (you may also regard it as a super debugger), can be used to hook into processes in order to analyze/debug them. As user frontends it may talk with GDB, IDA Pro, or any graphical debugger application that supports GDB, which feels familiar to most users.

In this post, we will not regard the GDB interface, but the Python API. We will see that it is really easy to integrate Tycho into your own python scripts and this way combine it with whatever other libraries you have been using already (like e.g. Volatility).

The Python library part is open source and you can always get the latest version in our Github Repository.

Setup

In order to analyse processes with Tycho via Python, we first need to set up both the analyst system and the system that is subject to analysis. This setup consists of just 2 steps:

  1. Boot supernova on the analysis box
  2. Run tycho-server on the developer laptop.

The following picture shows the typical setup:

  • Let’s call the box on the left the analysis box. It hosts a completely unmodified Windows 7 box. We activate network boot in order to boot our supernova hypervisor on it, which will then in turn boot the already installed Windows.
  • The laptop on the right is the analyst- or developer laptop. It will communicate with our hypervisor and remote control the debugging/analysis that will happen to the processes that run on the box at the left side.

When the analysis box gets to boot the supernova hypervisor, the hypervisor in turn will chainload the operating system that is already installed. This way supernova can quickly be deployed to any system with a reboot. After another reboot, it’s gone again.

Now we need to start tycho-server on the developer laptop. tycho-server connects to the running supernova instance via serial cable or USB debug cable and listens on a TCP port on the developer laptop. This way we get a communication channel to the hypervisor and can use python scripts that instruct it to do what we need.

Python Example

Now that we have a running hypervisor that we can talk to, let’s fire up a python shell and stop the builtin calculator calc.exe:

from pyTycho import tycho

service = tycho()
calc = service.open_process("calc.exe")
calc.pause()

After the calc.pause() line, supernova is kind of “armed” to stop calc.exe as soon as it sees this process being scheduled again. When this happens, we observe the following:

On the analysis box: Tycho paused calc.exe

An interesting detail is that this happens completely without support from the Windows side. Windows is not aware of us pausing this process! With a closer look at the task manager we see that calc.exe burns 50% CPU cycles, which is a side effect of our process pausing method. Note that this does not really burn 50% of the CPU cycles.

By running calc.resume()we can resume normal process execution and everything is like it was before.

We can also do more. Let’s print the PID of calc.exe and see how many threads it has.

>>> calc.get_pid()
2932L
>>> calc.get_thread_list()
[188L]

As we can see, our running calc.exe instance has PID 2932. Task manager shows us the same number. The get_thread_list() function yields us a list with only a single item. If we do the same query on the also running Internet Explorer, we get a more interesting result as it has a few threads running:

>>> iexplore = s.open_process("iexplore.exe")
>>> iexplore.get_thread_list()
[4004L, 3112L, 2364L, 2652L, 1208L, 2624L, 2948L, 2692L, 1372L, 2876L, 1228L]

Let’s see what else we can do. How about listing what DLLs are loaded into a process? This information is listed in the VAD tree in the Windows kernel:

>>> [n.filename for n in calc.get_vad_list() if n.filename.endswith(".dll")]
['\\Windows\\System32\\oleaccrc.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\user32.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\kernel32.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\ntdll.dll',
 '\\Windows\\winsxs\\amd64_microsoft.windows.gdiplus_6595b64144ccf1df_1.1.7601.17514_none_2b24536c71ed437a\\GdiPlus.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\oleacc.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\winmm.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\WindowsCodecs.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\dwmapi.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\uxtheme.dll',
 '\\Windows\\winsxs\\amd64_microsoft.windows.common-controls_6595b64144ccf1df_6.0.7601.17514_none_fa396087175ac9ac\\comctl32.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\version.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\cryptbase.dll',
 '\\Windows\\System32\\rpcrt4.dll',
 ...
]

We can also kill calc.exe by sending it a page fault:

>>> calc.pause()
>>> calc.inject_pagefault(0, 5)
True
>>> calc.resume()

With the inject_pagefault line we inject a page fault at address 0which looks like a null pointer dereference. From the perspective of the Windows kernel, this page fault came directly from the CPU. In reaction to that, it kills the calculator process.

calc.exe is being killed by Windows after we sent it a page fault via Tycho

Summary

We have seen how easy it is to prepare the analysis box for tampering around with it using the Tycho Python API. After rebooting the analysis box, the system is completely restored to the untouched state it was in before we booted supernova.

We have seen how to pause and resume processes like it is possible with normal debuggers – but without the support of the Windows kernel. This way the applications that run on this system cannot see any debugger artifacts.

In addition to that, we listed various process information (PID, thread list, VAD tree) and also killed a process by sending it a page fault.

Generally, there is more functionality like the following:

  • Stop and resume a process or individual threads
  • Read arbitraty memory from the process’ address space
  • Manipulate the process’ memory
  • Read out the whole VAD tree, EPROCESSand PEB information of a process from the Windows kernel space
  • Set breakpoints on…
    • specific instructions
    • System calls (without library hooking)
  • The number of features is steadily growing, so stay tuned, please.

We will showcase more features within the next blog articles.

Source: https://www.cyberus-technology.de/posts/2018-01-02-fun-with-python-and-tycho.html

Latest

Popular