Nikto2 & PatrolServer: check server vulnerabilities

security_compWe explored testssl earlier to keep your system safe from SSL vulnerabilities. But SSL is not the only package that might have security issues. If you care about your headless server you might want to have a solid resistance including as many packages as possible.

This article explores vulnerability scanners Nikto2 and PatrolServer. Both of them can be triggered on the fly or scheduled to run regular checks.


Nikto2 is a server scanner. It checks your web server by connecting from outside over a port on which the server is listening. It detects 6700 potentially dangerous files/programs, checks outdated versions of over 1250 servers and version specific problems on over 270 servers.


  • SSl support
  • HTTP proxy support
  • Checks for outdated server components
  • Scan multiple ports on a server, or multiple servers via input file (including nmap output)
  • Identifies installed software via headers, favicons and files
  • Guess credentials for authorization realms (including many default id/pw combos)
  • Scan tuning to include or exclude entire classes of vulnerability checks
  • Enhanced false positive reduction via multiple methods: headers, page content, and content hashing
  • Easily updated via command line
  • Customize reports, save in multiple formats


To install on Ubuntu (working as the client system), run:

$ apt-get install wget unzip libnet-ssleay-perl libwhisker2-perl openssl
$ sudo apt-get install nikto
$ perl -update


Basic usage is as simple as:

$ perl -h -o scan.htm
$ perl -h -p 80,443,999

nikto2 tries SSL connection automatically if non-SSL attempt fails.


PatrolServer is a bash script to check your server from within. It tests for outdated packages and known vulnerabilities. Currently it supports 54,900+ software packages and the list is growing. It is a standard solution for administrators with automatic detection mails.

In this article we will explore the bash scanner. Though it can work as a standalone utility, you may consider creating an account in PatrolServer website to view detailed scan reports and guidelines to secure your server.


$ wget


$ bash patrolserver

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