My first post to hackerteen - What is a Hacker and why do you want to be one?

So guys, I'll stay here with you during a long time (at least, I hope so...).

The idea is to mix my posts with technical stuff and non-technical related things... I dunno if you will all enjoy this, but I hope so.

Please, give-me feedbacks of what do you want to see here, doubts and questions so we can create a better environment in this texts and a not so boring one (including for me...).

What is a hacker? A hacker is not just a high-skilled guy who knows everything about computers (no one knows everything about computers, trust me)...

A hacker is someone who has a spirit of act. The spirit of act forces someone to go ahead, bypassing challenges, discovering new things, ever accepting just a brief explanation of how things works.

I'll give a sample, that occurred with me a couple of years ago... I was reading some Intel Architecture manuals, when I found something really interesting: "The Intel System Management Mode (SMM) is typically used to execute specific routines for power management. After entering SMM, various parts of a system can be shut down or disabled to minimize power consumption. SMM operates independently of other system software, and can be used for other purposes too."

Then I started to think with myself, what kind of OTHER PURPOSES are these... Researching in the internet, just give-me always the same answers, this resource is for power management... I started to better try it, what it offers, what the diffences of the common modes of operation and this one, how to put some code there, how to execute it and the idea finally comes to my mind: Use it to offer some kind of system-integrity checks. A year later, someone in a conference released some evil uses for the same mode of operation, giving more information on it... That information together with my previous researchs and more studies gives to me a complete system to protection the kernel integrity and it have been transformed and differente presentations that I gave around the world:

  • Hack in the Box Conference - Dubai
  • VNSecurity Conference - Vietnam
  • XCon Conference - China
  • Hack in the Box Conference - Malaysia

So, I'm a brillant guy? No, I'm not. I have magical powers? No, I don't. I just have the right motivation. The motivation to act, to learn more, to study and go deeper.

Expend a lot of time researching something that maybe will give to you a new thing, maybe not... It is not always so excitting as the movies show, so, are you really motivated?


Rodrigo Rubira Branco (BSDaemon)
rodrigo *noSPAM* kernelhacking DOT com

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