Last Thursday I had the pleasure of attending the Mac Forensics F3 training day. For those of you that do not know what F3 is, it is the ‘First Forensic Forum’. Most digital forensic investigators in the UK are linked to this organisation in some way and they offer training days every few months.
I thought that I would quickly note some items that were shared with us before I either forget about it or lose my notes.
This can be accomplished on either a Mac or a PC. If you’re looking to image with a Mac there are a few options to choose from but one of the best is offered by the guys over at http://macosxforensics.com. Their Mac OS X Forensics Imager is based on libewf and offers a graphical interface to the console-driven acquisition tool.
Obviously there are the common everyday items such as DD and DCFLDD that are easily run on the Mac.
Although a write blocker is always recommended it is possible to image a drive without. In order to do this you need to turn off ‘Disk Arbitration’. This is the process that automounts drives when they are connected to the computer. After turning this off any newly connected drives will not be mounted. Just don’t forget to turn it back on once you’re finished otherwise you may run into some difficulty. In order to turn this off just open Terminal and type:
sudo launchctl unload /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.diskarbitration.plist
To turn it back on type:
sudo launchctl load /System/Library/LaunchDaemons/com.apple.diskarbitration.plist
Spotlight Files – These maintain an index of the volume from which the file is taken.
Swap File – /private/var/vm/swapfile0
Sleepimage – This file is like the hiberfile on Windows.
Log Files – /var/log – can be opened with the Mac ‘Console’
Property Lists – Two main types: XML and Binary – plists are like the Windows registry. A plist editor is available on the Mac Developer Tools provided with a new Mac. There is also ‘Pref Setter’ (which has a nice search feature) and iPod Robot offers a plist reader for Windows.
Printing – The Mac has an inbuilt PDF printer. This doubles up as a printer spool. This means that, regardless of the printer used, a PDF is created of anything that is printed from a Mac. Once the printing is finished the PDF is released into unallocated clusters. A file carve for PDFs in unallocated space will return items printed with the Mac. These PDFs will also contain metadata providing the application used to print. I thought that this was the most interesting part of the day. This may be worth some more investigation and a full article written.
PeekIt, iBored, Hex Fiend, File Juicer, Mactracker, and Firefox Add-ons – CacheViewer and SQLiteManager.