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- Last Review: May 4, 2016

Home >NetScanTools Pro >Technical Details >Packet Generator Tool

Packet Generator Tool Description

Use the Packet Generator to craft an ethernet network packet and send it to a target. Generate and send TCP, UDP, ICMP, ARP, CDP or RAW format packets. This tool is part of NetScanTools Pro.

A Packet Generating and Crafting Tool

The NetScanTools Pro Packet Generator tool allows you to craft or build a TCP, UDP, ICMP, CDP (Cisco® Discovery Protocol), ARP/RARP or RAW packet and send one or more packets to a target IPv4 address.

You have full control over the headers: ethernet source and destination MAC addresses, IP, TCP, UDP or ICMP header fields. You can send different types of packets in succession using scripting.

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Version 11 Packet Generator Tool Slideshow

Important Notes:

  • This tool uses WinPcap to send packets. The interface you use to send packets must be compatible with WinPcap. Best results are usually obtained from a wired ethernet interface or a 802.11 wireless interface.

  • Looking for a Packet Flooder or Traffic Generator? This tool does not send packets at a rate necessary to stress or otherwise saturate an interface, please look at the Packet Flooder.

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Purpose of the Packet Generator

  • The purpose of this tool is to create a packet or set of packets to send to a target, then observe the target's response with a packet capturing tool like Packet Viewer or Wireshark. You can also view the results of those packet attacks in the log files on the target. This tool can also be used to help determine where specific packet types are being lost between machines.

Packet Generator Tool Capabilities

  • Sends TCP, UDP, ICMP, CDP, ARP/RARP or RAW Packets to the IPv4 address specified.
  • Full header control for predefined packet types. You can specify most parameters in the header such as source and destination IPv4 address, packet length, packet types, flags and checksums. The ethernet source and destination address can also be defined.
  • Data Payloads can be added for certain types of packets. The payload can be simple text or a file of your choosing. The length of the data payload is limited by the interface MTU and the packet type. We provide a Hex Editor to assist in creating or editing binary packet payloads or creating RAW packets.
  • RAW Packet mode gives you full control. RAW packet mode simply means that you define the packet from ethernet header to the end using our Hex Editor or another editor. Then you send the packet. The length of the raw packet is limited by the interface MTU.
  • The packet size is limited to the MTU of your network, typically 1460 bytes for ethernet.
  • Scripting. Simple scripting is provided so that you can send different types packets. Scripted packet transmission can be used to send packets with parameters changing according to your script.
  • Virtual machine ethernet interfaces. This tool works best with physical ethernet interfaces and we do use it with Oracle VirtualBox VMs. Just be sure to set the network interface to bridged mode so that it goes directly to your host physical ethernet interface without going through the VM NAT interface.

What this tool does not do

  • This tool is NOT a traffic generator or packet flooding tool capable of stressing a network interface - if you need to send lots of UDP packets, use our Packet Flooder tool. Burst rate of the Packet Generator tool is about 20Khz and this may vary from computer to computer.
  • This tool does not support handshaking of TCP connections - in other words, it does not listen for a response during a TCP handshake and send a different TCP packet in reply. So if you send a SYN and a SYN/ACK comes back, this tool does not continue to build up the TCP connection.
  • This tool does not have the ability to send custom packets through WAN (PPP/SLIP) interfaces like modems or wireless cellular modems, so this tool is limited to sending through wired ethernet or wireless 802.11x interfaces.

A video of the Packet Generator tool sending an RARP Reply Packet

More Information - Crafting Specific Types of Packets

Detailed pages showing more information about each of the packet types.

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