ElasticSearch, TheHive and Cortex

For a few weeks, many questions have been arising regarding the End of Life of ElasticSearch 6.8, and its impact on TheHive and Cortex applications.

We were about to release TheHive 4.0-RC3 when Thomas, akwardly calmly announced to us, having found some time (where?) to review new features and most important, breaking changes introduced by ES7. We have now a good idea of what should be updated or added in the code, as well as the amont of work it represents to get the application working perfectly.

What about current version ?

Few months ago, we announced our intention to maintain current stable versions until ES6 End of Life. At that time, we didn’t expect it to be sooner.

Discontinuing TheHive 3.x with the release of TheHive 4.0 has never been in our plans. With the time, more and more organisations adopted them, and it is important for us to give everyone enough space to schedule and make the move to the TheHive 4.0. This is why TheHive 3 and Cortex 3 will support ES7.

The good news is our ability to announce that the changes introduced by ES7 have no major impacts on us, We are scheduling a first RC1 for TheHive 3.5.0 and Cortex 3.1.0 in the last week of July. Not only will they include support for ES7, but also a few interesting improvements that will be introduced in the coming blog posts.

What’s next ?

Needless to say, the chiefs are sparing no effort in focusing on TheHive 4.0, which requires a huge amount of attention. The application stack has completely changed – the most important adjustment is pushing aside ElasticSearch in favour of Cassandra to manage TheHive’s data storage – and thanks to the community, lots of bugs have already been fixed allowing it to be stronger with time.

Once we consider TheHive 4.0 reliable enough to be used in production, we will publish it as a stable version, and that would be in the coming days. After all, our plans are to make the applications use the same technology stack, which will directly benefit to the next major version of Cortex.

Besides, Cortex is scheduled to be upgraded and based upon Scalligraph, Cassandra and Hadoop. We hope to publish a first RC in few months.

Stay tuned sounds like TheHive Project’s Twitter account will be on fire 🔥 in the coming days!

TheHive 4 is Here, Finally!


We have been speaking about it for almost two years.

We have been making it for more than twelve months.

And the day finally came for TheHive 4, our latest and greatest version, to be unleashed! The Chefs behind TheHive Project’s Code Kitchen are very happy to announce the immediate availability of TheHive 4.0, Release Candidate 1 (or 4.0-RC1 or the cool geeks call it).

Source: Berserk, écranlarge

Please note that a release candidate is not considered stable and must not be used in production. And since we almost rewrote TheHive from the ground up to accommodate all the nifty features outlined in a previous blog post, not to mention a few others we will cover in the upcoming weeks, we strongly recommend to take it for a spin on a test environment and help us uncover and fix bugs so we can release a stable version by April or May 2020.

Hmmm… I’d Rather Wait for a Stable Version

That’s your right but please don’t complain that, once released, the stable version is so buggy that it crashed your entire SOC operation and drove down the valuation of cryptocurrencies.

OK, OK… You Convinced Me. Where Should I Start?

Good! Well first things first. At this time, we produced documentation in kind of a rush while minding bazillion other things at the same time. We still need to proof-read it and enhance it.

If you are a seasoned TheHive user/contributor and you know what you are doing, please start with the installation guides for Debian or RedHat like operating systems. Then read the Quick start guide.

Noob warning: if you are completely new to TheHive, please use the latest stable version (3.4). TheHive 4.0-RC1 adds non-negligible complexity to accommodate advanced features such as RBAC and multi-tenancy and we will be very busy taking feedback from the intermediate/advanced users of our platform to make sure the stable version is rock-solid before we can recommend it to beginners.

You can find all the documentation we manage to write (more is coming) in the dedicated TheHive4 area of TheHiveDocs repository:

I’ve Just Tried it and Webhooks are Missing!

Nice catch Eagle Eye! Indeed webhooks have not been integrated in RC1. They will make a reappearance in a future RC, before the stable release. We have integrated them into a new notification system that is almost finished but still needs some elbow grease.

But Are you Going to Maintain TheHive 3.4.x when 4.0 will be Released?

You should know that bees will never let you down unless you gas them with pesticides (i.e. non-constructive feedback) and exigences (don’t forget that this is FOSS and we try to do the best we can, right?). So TheHive 3.4.x is scheduled to be maintained around two years after the release of 4.0 as a stable version, unless Elasticsearch 6.x is EOL’ed before that. In which case, we will have no choice but phase out 3.4.x (moving to ES 7+ will require a lot of work that we can put elsewhere).

Help!!! TheHive 4.0-RC1 Does not Work!

Please open an issue on GitHub using the template made for TheHive4 if you’d like to report a bug on this version. We will monitor those closely and respond accordingly.

Correction: March 3, 2020 
A new section regarding webhooks was added. In addition, a few typos were corrected.

Under the Mighty Hood of TheHive 4

We have been speaking about it for almost two years. We have been making it for more than twelve months. And the day (or rather the month in this case) has almost come for TheHive 4, our latest and greatest version, to be unleashed.

While the first release candidate should be published by the end of this month, we would like to cover some of the most important changes we introduced in a platform which we rewrote almost from the ground up (40,000 lines of Scala code and counting), while keeping the familiar look&feel our longtime users came to expect.In a previous blog post, we covered TheHiveFS, a nifty feature of TheHive4 that allows you to quickly access all files stored in TheHive directly from your investigation machine. It’s time now to get a look under the hood of THeHive 4.

My Time is Precious. TL;DR Please

A picture is worth a thousand words, right? Here you go then!

The Hive 4’s Brand New Architecture

I am Puzzled, can you Elaborate a Bit?

So, you are not in a hurry anymore? Fine. Here, grab a seat, a glass of Gevrey-Chambertin and tasty Burgundy snails. All set? Let’s start then!

TheHive 4 will be the first version to use a graph database instead of Elasticsearch. Yes, you read that correctly. TheHive 4 won’t support Elasticsearch anymore but fear not fearless cyberdefender. Your friendly bees will not leave you hanging. If you are already using TheHive 3.4.x, we will provide a migration tool that will move your existing data to the new storage system (with no losses or bit flips hopefully).

We haven’t decided to ditch Elasticsearch on a whim or because Thomas (Franco, not Chopitea nor the General) dropped his leftist hipster attitude for a tight, tailor-made dictator uniform straight out of Spain. For all its greatness, ES has some annoying limitations which prevented us from adding, in an elegant, haiku-like way important features such as multi-tenancy, RBAC and large file management, while laying the ground for the future (stop being curious, the future has not been invented yet and when we do invent it, we’ll let you know).

Using JanusGraph, TheHive 4 structures information in graphs and stores them in an Apache Cassandra database. All the files that you attach to task logs or add as observables are stored in a Hadoop Distributed File System (HDFS).

Thanks to this brand new architecture, TheHive 4 is horizontally scalable. You can add as many TheHive, Cassandra and HDFS nodes to your Security Incident Response Platform cluster and sustain whatever load you might be facing without a sweat. Who said FOSS can’t be ‘enterprise grade’ (whatever that means in marketing lingo)?

Tour d’Horizon of the Main Features

TheHive 4, boosted by all the passion and skills of Zen Master Franco and MC Adouani, will support, in addition to TheHiveFS:

  • Multi-tenancy
  • RBAC
  • 2FA
  • Web configuration
  • API versioning

We will cover some of these features in greater detail in future instalments. In the meantime, let’s take a ride in a helicopter and view the wonderful landscape laying before us from above. After you Messieurs-Dames, we are French gentlemen and gallantry is of the essence (except when we use the public transportation in Paris, then savages we become).

Multi-Tenancy

As in Cortex, you will be able to create multiple organisations within a single instance of TheHive 4. In addition, an organisation can decide to share a case or parts of it (say a task, some observables, etc.) with other organisations. That way, a peer organisation or a constituent can contribute to the investigation at hand, provide essential information, etc.

RBAC

TheHive 4 supports a large set of user permissions. Some pertain to administrators, others to users and there are also permissions that apply to connectors. For example, users can manage tasks but not observables. They can have the power to share a case or part of it with sister organisations and execute Cortex analyzers but not responders.

You will be able to create roles for users, and, at the organisational level, what we call shares. RBAC deserves its own blog post and we’ll get to it pretty soon.

2FA

Do you really want us to describe this one? Before you answer yes, we’d like to remind you that you are in a helicopter. Just sayin’.

‘They asked me to explain 2FA. So I helped them out of the helicopter. It was flying way above ground.’
Source: Berserk, FNAC.com

Web Configuration

Tired of using vi, Emacs or your favourite CLI editor for making configuration changes to TheHive’s application.conf? Tired of restarting the service to take into account those modifications? Then you will certainly go dance kizomba with Nabil all night long when we tell you that you don’t need to use vi & service (or whatever the kids are using these days) anymore!

Thanks to the new architecture, all the configuration will be stored in the underlying database and you will be able to edit it using the WebUI. TheHive will automatically take the changes into account and you won’t need to restart it.

We can feel your love here. Merci !

API Versioning

TheHive 4 adds API versioning and it will maintain backward compatibility with TheHive 3.4.x without preventing us from adding new features. TheHive4py will not be updated right away for TheHive 4 but thanks to the backward API compatibility, all existing feeders and programs that use the current version of TheHive4py will still work out of the box.

That’s all folks! Stay tuned for further news and, in the meantime, don’t be blue cuz’ the bees gonna take care of you.