Training VM Reloaded: Mellifera 13, Cortex 1.1.4 & Other Updates

After the release wagon we unleashed upon the Internet tracks last week, we have updated the training VM to include Mellifera 13 (TheHive 2.13.0), Cortex 1.1.4, TheHive4py 1.3.0, Cortex4py 1.1.0 and the latest Cortex analyzers with all dependencies.

We strongly encourage you to refrain from using it for production.

Get It

You can download the VM from the following location:

To ensure that your download went through nicely, check the file’s SHA256 hash which must be equal to the following value:


The system’s login is thehive and the associated password is thehive1234.

Use It

You can start using TheHive & Cortex once the VM is started. To access TheHive, point your browser to the following URL:


For Cortex, the port is 9999:


Where to Go from Here?

Please read the associated documentation page to configure the services on your training virtual machine and plug it with MISP.

Need Help?

Something does not work as expected? No worries, we got you covered. Please join our  user forum, contact us on Gitter, or send us an email at We are here to help.

TheHive4py 1.3.0 is Here

Version 1.3.0 of the Python API client for TheHive is now available. It is compatible with the freshly released Mellifera 13. This new release includes the changes outlined below.

To update your existing package:

$ sudo pip install thehive4py --upgrade

If you are just getting started with TheHive4py, you can forgo the --upgrade at the end of the command above.

New Features

  • Add more options to sort, filter and paginate case tasks and observables
  • Add a find_alerts method to allow querying alerts
  • Add support to API Key authentication mechanism

Bug Fixes

  • Added verify parameter to calls

Breaking Changes

  • The `get_case_tasks` method has been made consistent with all the other methods and now returns a `Response` object instead of a JSON dict.

Houston? Are you There?

Shall you encounter any difficulty, please join our  user forum, contact us on Gitter, or send us an email at As usual, we’ll be more than happy to help!

Mellifera 12.1 Released

About a month ago, we published Mellifera 12 which brought numerous features such as mini-reports on the observable page, custom fields, alert similarity or template selection during alert imports.

Great, palatable recipes, even if they are cooked by fine French chefs, need to be refined over time and may not be as savoury as intended when they are served in their early days. Quality takes time, although smokeware vendors would have you think otherwise.

Mellifera 12.1 (TheHive 2.12.1) has been released to fix a number of outstanding bugs:

  • #249: renaming of users does not work
  • #254: TheHive does not send the file’s name when communicating with Cortex
  • #255: merging an alert into an existing case does not merge the alert description into the case’s description
  • #257: while TheHive does not let you add multiple attachments to a single task log, the UI makes you believe otherwise
  • #259: fix an API inconsistency. GET /api/case/task/:id/log has been fixed.
    And a new API call POST /api/case/task/:taskId/log/_search  has been added, which accepts a “query” in the request body to filter logs of the task.
  • #268: cannot create an alert if the IOC field is set for a single alert’s attribute.
  • #269: closing a case with an open task does not dismiss it from ‘My Tasks’.

This new minor release adds the following enhancements:

  • #267: fix warnings in the DEB package.
  • #272: in alert preview, similar cases are shown regardless of their status. Merged or deleted ones should not appear in that list.

How About the Test VM?

The test VM has not been updated yet. It still contains Mellifera 12 (TheHive 2.12.0). We will update it in September, probably when Mellifera 13 is released. That version will bring the ability to export cases as MISP events.

Download & Get Down to Work

If you have an existing installation of TheHive, please follow the migration guide.

If you are performing a fresh installation, read the installation guide corresponding to your needs and enjoy. Please note that you can install TheHive using an RPM or DEB package, use Docker, install it from a binary or build it from sources.


Something does not work as expected? You have troubles installing or upgrading? No worries, please join our  user forum, contact us on Gitter, or send us an email at We are here to help.

Mellifera 12: The MAGA Edition

TheHive Project French Chefs are very happy to announce Mellifera 12, a brand new, all shiny, major version of TheHive.

This MAGA (Make Analysis Great Again) edition of your (soon to be?) favorite Security Incident Response Platform (SIRP) contains an awful lot of changes and improvements. While you can read the full changelog while waiting in line for your burger at HopDoddy or for your turn for the latest Disney attraction, we’d like to concentrate on a few features that would make you enjoy Digital Forensics & Incident Response like never before 🙂

Go Short or Go North

The Observables tab can now display the short (a.k.a. mini) reports produced by analyzers. Whenever you run an analysis (or many), the mini-reports will be shown as soon as the corresponding analyzer jobs have successfully finished. That way, you no longer have to click on each observable to access the short report.

Short Reports shown on the Observables Tab

In fact, you don’t even have to click on the observable to access the long reports. You must simply click on the corresponding short report and the long one will be displayed on top of the observables tab as shown in the following screencast. Ain’t that nifty?


A Single Click on the Short Report Shows the Long One

The short reports have been also improved to follow a taxonomy. To get to this stage, we had to review all 24 analyzers and their flavors, add new functionality to the CortexUtils Python library and improve the analyzers to add a summary section to their JSON output which Mellifera 12 interprets and displays according to a color code as described in our previous post. Please make sure to read it as it contains important information on how to update your cortexutils version and the analyzers as well as the report templates.

Is This Alert New or What?

Mellifera 12 introduces an important feature pertaining to alerts. To put it simply, whenever you receive a new alert from MISP, email, SIEM or any other source that you have connected with TheHive, the alert preview page will tell you if there are similarities with existing cases and if so, Mellifera 12 will let you import the new alert in the existing case and any updates made to that alert (think of an ongoing MISP event) will be automatically added to the case.

Alert Preview Page with the new Similar cases Section

Template this, Template that

In addition to the ‘similarity’ feature outlined above, Mellifera 12 lets you choose the case template to use when importing a new alert instead of having to use only a specific case template per alert type/source.

Choose the Template You’d Like to Use to Import an Alert

Custom Fields

We heard our community and implemented a feature that was requested by several users: custom fields.

So you’d like to add a business impact to a specific type of cases? Or a set of TTPs? Or a Threat Actor? Or specify a Business Unit? No problem! Ask an admin to create a custom field, associate it with a case template and there you go.

Add a Custom Field

Unlike metrics, custom fields must not be filled to close a case. You can also supercharge a case with custom fields that have not been associated to a case template. We currently support four types of custom fields: strings, numbers, booleans and dates. And you can create lists of acceptable values to limit your analysts’ choices to legitimate data.

Other New Features

Mellifera 12 gives you the ability to reopen closed tasks. And when viewing the related cases tab of the current case, you’ll see the resolution status of the ones that were closed (false positive, true positive, indeterminate). External links will also be opened in a new tab.  Moreover, files included in alerts are no longer limited to 32 KB so you have no longer an excuse to avoid sending user email reports with their attachments to TheHive 😉

Download & Get Down to Work

If you have an existing installation of TheHive, please follow the migration guide.

If you are performing a fresh installation, read the installation guide corresponding to your needs and enjoy. Please note that you can install TheHive using an RPM or DEB package, use Docker, install it from a binary or build it from sources.


Something does not work as expected? You have troubles installing or upgrading? No worries, please join our  user forum, contact us on Gitter, or send us an email at We are here to help.

TheHive, Cortex and MISP: How They All Fit Together

TheHive, Cortex and MISP work nicely together and if you’ve read our June-Dec 17 roadmap post, the integration of our products with the de facto threat sharing platform will get better in a few months.

During the FIRST conference presentation we gave last week, we displayed a picture that we will use here to try to explain how these three open source and free products integrate with one another.

Screen Shot 2017-06-16 at 09.58.43.png
A Picture is Worth a Thousand Words…


TheHive is a Security Incident Response Platform (SIRP). It can receive alerts from different sources (SIEM, IDS, email. etc.) via its REST API. This is where alert feeders come into play.

Alert Feeders

Think of an alert feeder as a specialized program which consumes a security event (SIEM alert, email report, IDS alert, and so on), parses it and outputs an alert that its sends to TheHive through TheHive4py, the Python library we provide to interact with TheHive’s REST API.

We do not supply such feeders but developing them should be straightforward. If not, let us know  and we’ll do our best to help you out.


Any alert sent to TheHive will show up in its Alerts pane. In addition to the sources mentioned above, new or updated MISP events will show up as well in that area if you configured TheHive to connect to one or several MISP instances. If so, TheHive will poll those MISP instance(s) at every interval looking for new or updated events. If there are any, TheHive will generate an alert which will end up in the Alerts pane.

Screen Shot 2017-06-18 at 15.29.51.png
The Alerts Pane

Alerts can be ignored, mark as read, previewed and imported. When an alert is imported, it becomes a case that needs to be investigated.


The Workflow that is at the Heart of TheHive

A case can be generated from an alert or created from scratch. It is subdivided into tasks (think identification, containment, eradication, check proxy logs, and so on) and observables (IP addresses, hashes, email addresses, domain names, URLs…). When analysts are working on tasks, they add logs as they go. In TheHive’s terminology, logs are text entries which may contain attachments to help analysts record what they have been doing. Logs can be written using Markdown or a rich-text editor.

Case Templates

You don’t need to add the same tasks over and over when working on cases belonging to a given category (DDoS, Malspam, APT, …). You can create custom templates to which you add tasks as shown below. This is very useful when you are dealing with alerts so that when you import them, you can select which case template you’d like to apply and there you go!

Screen Shot 2017-06-16 at 10.26.22.png
A Sample Case Template

Observables can be tagged, flagged as IOCs, and analyzed. When the investigation is well in progress or completed, you may want to share the resulting IOCs or a subset of those with partners and peers. TheHive will support the ability to export that data to MISP in September 2017. Until then, you can still export your IOCs as text, CSV or as a MISP-compatible format that you can use to add them to your MISP instance using the freetext editor. TheHive can export IOCs/observables in protected (hxxps://www[.]somewhere[.]com/) or unprotected mode.

Every observable must have a TLP (Traffic Light Protocol) level. By default, any added observable is considered TLP:AMBER. Please note that the TLP is taken into account by some analyzers. Wait! Analyzers?


Cortex is our standalone analysis engine and a perfect companion for TheHive and MISP. Analysts can use it to analyze observables using its Web UI, in which case they can be submitted only one at a time. The Web UI should really be limited to quick assessments of observables before creating a case in TheHive (or in an alternate SIRP). The power of Cortex really comes into play when you use its REST API. TheHive speaks natively to Cortex (as MISP does). Moreover, TheHive can leverage one or several Cortex servers.

Screen Shot 2017-06-18 at 15.57.27.png
Observable Page and List of Analyzers

As of this writing, Cortex has 23 analyzers which come in a total of 39 flavors and more will be available soon.

An analyzer can be written in any programming language supported by Linux though all of our current analyzers are written in Python. This is because we provide a Python library called Cortexutils which contains a set of utility classes that make it easier to write an analyzer in Python.


Analyzers such as VirusTotal, PassiveTotal or DomainTools can provide different analysis services. Let’s take VirusTotal as an example. You can scan a file or URL. That’s one flavor. You can also obtain the latest available report on for a file, hash, domain or IP address. That’s a second flavor. So the VirusTotal analyzer has two flavors.

Screen Shot 2017-06-18 at 16.26.41.png

How about PassiveTotal? It has 8 flavors: unique resolutions lookup, SSL certificate history lookup, malware lookup, passive DNS lookup, data enrichment lookup, SSL certificate details lookup, OSINT lookup and WHOIS data lookup.

The MISP Search Analyzer

At this point, we need to mention a special analyzer that may create some confusion if not understood correctly: the MISP Search analyzer. Thanks to it, Cortex has the ability to search observables within a MISP instance as represented by the arrow that goes from the Analyzers to MISP.

Search for MISP Events Containing a Given Observable

When an observable is found in an event, Cortex will return the number of records found (i.e. the number of events where the observable has been found) and a list of links to those events with additional data.

Searching for a Hash Using the MISP Search Analyzer from the Cortex Web UI
Screen Shot 2017-06-19 at 08.17.04.png
The Same Search Conducted from TheHive: Long Report
Screen Shot 2017-06-19 at 08.18.58.png

The current version of the MISP Search analyzer can only search within a single MISP instance but in the near future, it will be able to support multiple ones.

MISP Expansion Modules

Besides its own analyzers (which include MISP Search described above), Cortex can also invoke MISP expansion modules. These are normally used by MISP to enrich attributes within events but Cortex can also take advantage of them to analyze observables.

There is some overlap between the native Cortex analyzers and MISP expansion modules. When choosing between a native analyzer or an expansion module, we highly recommend you select the former. The expansion modules are deactivated in the default Cortex configuration.


When you submit an observable for analysis, Cortex will create a job and, if successful, it will generate an analysis report in JSON format. TheHive has the ability to parse those results and present them in a human-friendly fashion thanks to report templates we offer for free. So when you’ll submit an observable to Cortex from TheHive, you’ll get back a short (or mini) report and a long one. The first can be thought of as a really tiny Exec Analyst Summary while the second provides more insight and details.

Calling Cortex from MISP

In addition to the expansion modules we have just mentioned, MISP 2.4.73 and up can enrich attributes using Cortex analyzers. The configuration is pretty straightforward. So if all you are concerned about is threat intelligence and sharing, you may augment your visibility into a given threat represented as a MISP event by leveraging all current 23 Cortex analyzers and any future ones.


TheHive, Cortex and MISP are three open source and free products that can highly aid you combat threats and keep the ‘monsters’ at bay.

TheHive, as a SIRP, allows you to investigate security incident swiftly in a collaborative manner. Several analysts can work simultaneously on tasks & cases . While cases can be created from scratch, TheHive can receive alerts from different sources thanks to alert feeders which consume security events generated by multiple sources and feed them into TheHive using TheHive4py Python library. TheHive can also sync to one or several MISP instances to receive new and updated events which will appear in the alert pane with all the other alerts generated by other sources. Analysts can then preview new alerts to decide whether they need to be acted upon. If so, they can transform them into investigation cases using templates.

To analyze the observables collected in the course of an investigation and/or imported from a MISP event, TheHive can rely on one or several Cortex analysis engines. Cortex is another standalone product that we have developed which sole purpose is to allow you to analyze observables at scale thanks to its large number of analyzers, MISP expansion modules and any analyzer you might have developed on the side. Cortex has a REST API that can be used to empower other security products such as  ‘analytics’ software, alternate SIRPs or MISP.

The highly popular threat sharing platform can indeed enrich attributes thanks to Cortex as it has a native integration with it. And in a few months, you will also be able to export cases from TheHive as MISP events that you can share with peers and partners.

If you do share, you do care about our collective mission to defend the  digital assets that are under our watch from harm. So let us fight together as one.