PacketStreamer is a high-performance remote packet capture and collection tool. It is used by Deepfence’s ThreatStryker security observability platform to gather network traffic on demand from cloud workloads for forensic analysis.
Primary design goals:
- Stay light, capture and stream, no additional processing
- Portability, works across virtual machines, Kubernetes and AWS Fargate. Linux and Windows
PacketStreamer sensors are started on the target servers. Sensors capture traffic, apply filters, and then stream the traffic to a central reciever. Traffic streams may be compressed and/or encrypted using TLS.
The PacketStreamer receiver accepts PacketStreamer streams from multiple remote sensors, and writes the packets to a local
pcap capture file.
PacketStreamer sensors collect raw network packets on remote hosts. It selects packets to capture using a BPF filter, and forwards them to a central reciever process where they are written in pcap format. Sensors are very lightweight and impose little performance impact on the remote hosts. PacketStreamer sensors can be run on bare-metal servers, on Docker hosts, and on Kubernetes nodes.
The PacketStreamer receiver accepts network traffic from multiple sensors, collecting it into a single, central
pcap file. You can then process the pcap file or live feed the traffic to the tooling of your choice, such as
Suricata, or as a live stream for Machine Learning models.
PacketStreamer meets more general use cases than existing alternatives. For example, PacketBeat captures and parses the packets on multiple remote hosts, assembles transactions, and ships the processed data to a central ElasticSearch collector. ksniff captures raw packet data from a single Kubernetes pod.
Use PacketStreamer if you need a lightweight, efficient method to collect raw network data from multiple machines for central logging and analysis.
For full instructions, refer to the PacketStreamer Documentation.
You will need to install the golang toolchain and
libpcap-dev before building PacketStreamer.
Pre-requisites (Ubuntu): sudo apt install golang-go libpcap-dev
git clone https://github.com/deepfence/PacketStreamer.git
Run a PacketStreamer receiver, listening on port 8081 and writing pcap output to /tmp/dump_file (see receiver.yaml):
./packetstreamer receiver –config ./contrib/config/receiver.yaml
Who uses PacketStreamer?
- Deepfence ThreatStryker uses PacketStreamer to capture traffic from production platforms for forensics and anomaly detection.