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Liam Nelson
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Download Burp Suite for Free: Learn the Basics of Web Penetration Testing


Download Burp Suite: A Complete Guide for Web Application Security Testing




If you are a web developer, a web security tester, or a web enthusiast, you might have heard of Burp Suite. But what is it exactly and how can you download and use it for web application security testing? In this article, we will answer these questions and more. We will explain what Burp Suite is, why you need it, how to download and install it on different platforms, and how to set up and use it for web application security testing.




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What is Burp Suite and why do you need it?




Burp Suite is a set of tools used for penetration testing of web applications. It is developed by the company named PortSwigger, which is also the alias of its founder Dafydd Stuttard. Burp Suite aims to be an all-in-one set of tools and its capabilities can be enhanced by installing add-ons that are called BApps.


Burp Suite works as a MITM (man-in-the-middle) proxy, enabling you to intercept, inspect, and manipulate traffic bi-directionally. It comes equipped with a powerful arsenal of tools that you can use to identify and exploit vulnerabilities in web applications. Some of the tools included in Burp Suite are:


Burp Suite features and tools




  • Proxy: The core tool of Burp Suite that allows you to intercept and modify HTTP(s) and WebSocket requests and responses between your browser and the target application.



  • Scanner: An automated tool that scans web applications for common vulnerabilities such as SQL injection, cross-site scripting, broken authentication, etc.



  • Intruder: A tool that allows you to perform customized attacks on web applications by sending multiple requests with different payloads and analyzing the responses.



  • Repeater: A tool that allows you to manually modify and resend individual requests and observe the responses.



  • Sequencer: A tool that analyzes the randomness of session tokens and other data items that are intended to be unpredictable.



  • Decoder: A tool that allows you to decode or encode data using various methods such as Base64, URL encoding, hex encoding, etc.



  • Comparer: A tool that allows you to compare two pieces of data (such as requests, responses, or logs) and highlight the differences.



  • Extender: A tool that allows you to extend the functionality of Burp Suite by loading custom extensions (BApps) written in Java, Python, or Ruby.



  • Collaborator: A tool that allows you to perform out-of-band testing (OAST) by generating unique payloads that can be used to detect server-side interactions with external systems.



Burp Suite editions and pricing




Burp Suite comes in three editions: Community, Professional, and Enterprise. The Community edition is free but has limited features and functionality. The Professional edition is the most popular one among security professionals as it offers all the features and tools of Burp Suite. The Enterprise edition is designed for large-scale web scanning and integration with development pipelines. The table below summarizes the main differences between the three editions:



Edition


Price


Features


Community


Free


Limited functionality of Proxy, Scanner, Intruder, Repeater, Sequencer, Decoder, Comparer, and Extender. No Collaborator.


Professional


$399/year per user


Full functionality of all Burp Suite tools and features. Access to BApp Store and Burp Collaborator server.


Enterprise


$3,999/year per agent


Scalable web scanning with multiple agents. Integration with CI/CD pipelines and issue trackers. Web-based dashboard and reporting.


How to download and install Burp Suite on different platforms




Burp Suite is available for download from the PortSwigger website. You can choose the edition and the platform that suits your needs. Burp Suite supports Windows, Linux, and Mac OS operating systems. The installation process is different for each platform, so we will explain it step by step below.


Downloading Burp Suite from PortSwigger website




To download Burp Suite from the PortSwigger website, you need to follow these steps:


  • Go to the PortSwigger website and click on the "Download" button at the top right corner.



  • Select the edition (Community, Professional, or Enterprise) that you want to download. If you choose the Professional or Enterprise edition, you will need to provide your license key or sign in with your account.



  • Select the platform (Windows, Linux, or Mac OS) that you want to download. You will see a list of available downloads for that platform. You can choose between a standalone executable file (.exe for Windows, .sh for Linux, or .dmg for Mac OS) or a Java executable file (.jar) that requires Java Runtime Environment (JRE) to run.



  • Click on the "Download" button next to the file that you want to download. The file will be downloaded to your default download location.



Installing Burp Suite on Windows




To install Burp Suite on Windows, you need to follow these steps:


  • If you downloaded the standalone executable file (.exe), double-click on it to launch the installer. If you downloaded the Java executable file (.jar), make sure you have JRE installed on your system and double-click on it to launch Burp Suite.



  • If you launched the installer, follow the instructions on the screen to complete the installation. You can choose the destination folder and create shortcuts for Burp Suite.



  • If you launched Burp Suite directly from the Java executable file (.jar), you will see a splash screen and then the main interface of Burp Suite.



  • You have successfully installed Burp Suite on Windows.



Installing Burp Suite on Linux




To install Burp Suite on Linux, you need to follow these steps:



  • If you downloaded the standalone executable file (.sh), make sure it has executable permissions by running the command chmod +x burpsuite_*.sh in a terminal window. If you downloaded the Java executable file (.jar), make sure you have JRE installed on your system.



  • If you have the standalone executable file (.sh), run it by typing ./burpsuite_*.sh in a terminal window. If you have the Java executable file (.jar), run it by typing java -jar burpsuite_*.jar in a terminal window.



  • You will see a splash screen and then the main interface of Burp Suite.



  • You have successfully installed Burp Suite on Linux.




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  • If you downloaded the standalone executable file (.dmg), double-click on it to mount it as a disk image. If you downloaded the Java executable file (.jar), make sure you have JRE installed on your system.



  • If you mounted the disk image, drag and drop the Burp Suite icon to your Applications folder. If you have the Java executable file (.jar), double-click on it to launch Burp Suite.



  • You will see a splash screen and then the main interface of Burp Suite.



  • You have successfully installed Burp Suite on Mac OS.




How to set up and use Burp Suite for web application security testing




Now that you have downloaded and installed Burp Suite on your platform, you are ready to use it for web application security testing. But before you start testing, you need to set up Burp Suite properly and configure your browser to use it as a proxy. This way, you can intercept and manipulate the traffic between your browser and the target web application. You also need to familiarize yourself with the Burp Suite interface and tools, and learn how to perform basic tasks with them. In this section, we will guide you through these steps.


Configuring your browser to use Burp Suite as a proxy




The first step to use Burp Suite is to configure your browser to use it as a proxy. This will allow Burp Suite to intercept and modify the requests and responses that your browser sends and receives from the target web application. You can use any browser that supports proxy settings, such as Firefox, Chrome, Safari, etc. The proxy settings are usually found in the browser's preferences or options menu. The proxy details that you need to enter are:


  • Proxy type: HTTP or HTTPS



  • Proxy host: 127.0.0.1 (this is the loopback address of your own machine)



  • Proxy port: 8080 (this is the default port that Burp Suite listens on)



For example, if you are using Firefox, you can configure the proxy settings by following these steps:


  • Open Firefox and click on the menu button (three horizontal bars) at the top right corner.



  • Select "Preferences" from the menu.



  • Scroll down to the "Network Settings" section and click on the "Settings" button.



  • Select "Manual proxy configuration" and enter 127.0.0.1 as the HTTP Proxy and 8080 as the Port.



  • Check the box that says "Use this proxy server for all protocols".



  • Click on "OK" to save the settings.



You can verify that your browser is using Burp Suite as a proxy by visiting any website and checking if the request and response appear in the Proxy tool of Burp Suite.


Exploring the Burp Suite interface and tools




The next step to use Burp Suite is to explore its interface and tools. The main interface of Burp Suite consists of a menu bar, a toolbar, a tab bar, and a main panel. The menu bar contains various options for configuring and controlling Burp Suite. The toolbar contains buttons for launching and accessing different tools of Burp Suite. The tab bar contains tabs for switching between different tools of Burp Suite. The main panel displays the content and functionality of the selected tool.


The tools of Burp Suite are organized into four categories: Proxy, Scanner, Intruder, and Repeater. Each category has a corresponding tab in the tab bar. You can click on any tab to access the tools under that category. You can also launch any tool from the toolbar or the menu bar. Some tools have sub-tools that are accessible from their own tabs or buttons within the main panel of the tool.


The following table summarizes the main tools of Burp Suite and their functions:



Category


Tool


Function


Proxy


Intercept


Allows you to intercept and modify HTTP(s) and WebSocket requests and responses between your browser and the target application.


HTTP history


Shows a history of all HTTP(s) requests and responses that have passed through Burp Suite.


Scanner


Scan queue


Shows the status and progress of the active and queued scans.


Issue activity


Shows a history of all issues that have been identified by the Scanner.


Intruder


Positions


Allows you to define the positions where you want to insert payloads in the requests.


Results


Shows the results of the attacks, including the requests, responses, and various metrics.


Repeater


Request


Allows you to manually modify and resend individual requests.


Response


Shows the response received from the server for the request.


Performing basic tasks with Burp Suite tools




The final step to use Burp Suite is to perform some basic tasks with its tools. These tasks will help you get familiar with the functionality and workflow of Burp Suite. You can also use these tasks as a starting point for more advanced testing and analysis. Here are some examples of basic tasks that you can perform with Burp Suite tools:



  • Intercepting and modifying a request with Proxy: To intercept and modify a request with Proxy, you need to enable the Intercept mode by clicking on the "Intercept is off" button in the Intercept tool. Then, visit any website from your browser and you will see the request appear in the Intercept tool. You can modify any part of the request, such as the method, URL, headers, or body. You can also use various options from the context menu, such as sending the request to other tools, changing the encoding, adding comments, etc. When you are done modifying the request, you can forward it to the server by clicking on the "Forward" button or drop it by clicking on the "Drop" button.



  • Scanning a web application for vulnerabilities with Scanner: To scan a web application for vulnerabilities with Scanner, you need to send the requests that you want to scan to the Scanner tool. You can do this by using various options from the context menu of other tools, such as Proxy, Repeater, or Intruder. For example, you can right-click on any request in the HTTP history tool and select "Send to Scanner". You will see the request appear in the Scan queue tool. You can also configure various scan options, such as scope, speed, accuracy, etc. by clicking on the "Scan" button in the menu bar. The Scanner will automatically scan the requests for common vulnerabilities and report any issues that it finds in the Issue activity tool. You can view the details of each issue, such as name, severity, description, evidence, etc. by clicking on it.



  • Performing a customized attack on a web application with Intruder: To perform a customized attack on a web application with Intruder, you need to send a base request that you want to use for the attack to the Intruder tool. You can do this by using various options from the context menu of other tools, such as Proxy, Repeater, or Scanner. For example, you can right-click on any request in the HTTP history tool and select "Send to Intruder". You will see the request appear in the Positions tool. You can then define the positions where you want to insert payloads in the request by selecting them and clicking on the "Add " button. You can also choose between different attack types, such as Sniper, Battering ram, Pitchfork, or Cluster bomb. Next, you need to configure your payloads by clicking on the "Payloads" tab. You can choose between different payload types, such as numbers, dates, lists, brute force, etc. You can also load custom payloads from files or generate them using various options. Finally, you need to start the attack by clicking on the "Start attack" button in the menu bar. You will see the results of the attack in the Results tool. You can view and modify the requests, responses, and various metrics of each attack by clicking on them.



  • Resending and analyzing a request with Repeater: To resend and analyze a request with Repeater, you need to send a request that you want to use for the analysis to the Repeater tool. You can do this by using various options from the context menu of other tools, such as Proxy, Intruder, or Scanner. For example, you can right-click on any request in the HTTP history tool and select "Send to Repeater". You will see the request appear in the Request tool. You can then modify any part of the request, such as the method, URL, headers, or body. You can also use various options from the context menu, such as changing the encoding, adding comments, sending the request to other tools, etc. When you are ready to resend the request, you can click on the "Go" button or press Ctrl+Enter. You will see the response received from the server in the Response tool. You can view and analyze the response using various options from the context menu, such as decoding, comparing, highlighting, etc.




Conclusion and FAQs




Conclusion




In this article, we have learned how to download and install Burp Suite on different platforms, how to configure your browser to use Burp Suite as a proxy, how to explore the Burp Suite interface and tools, and how to perform some basic tasks with Burp Suite tools. We have also seen some examples of how Burp Suite can help you identify and exploit vulnerabilities in web applications. Burp Suite is a powerful and versatile set of tools that can assist you in web application security testing. However, it is not a magic bullet that can do everything for you. You still need to have a good understanding of web application security concepts and techniques, and use your own skills and creativity to find and exploit vulnerabilities. Burp Suite is a tool that can enhance your web application security testing capabilities, but it is not a substitute for them.


FAQs




Here are some frequently asked questions about Burp Suite:



  • Q: How can I get a license key for Burp Suite Professional or Enterprise edition?



  • A: You can get a license key for Burp Suite Professional or Enterprise edition by purchasing it from the PortSwigger website. You will need to create an account and provide your payment details. You can choose between different subscription plans and payment methods. Once you complete your purchase, you will receive an email with your license key and instructions on how to activate it.



  • Q: How can I update Burp Suite to the latest version?



A: You can update


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