CSIRT-Collect USB can be found in the main repository for CSIRT-Collect. CSIRT-Collect is a PowerShell script to collect memory and (triage) disk forensics for incident response investigations.

CSIRT-Collect USB is designed to run directly from a USB device. While a network deployment certainly supports automation, as an Incident Responder I can think of several examples where that wouldn’t be an option:

  • An air-gapped manufacturing environment
  • Hospital/Medical Environments
  • Ransomware incidents when the assets have been detached from the network

Preparation is the first phase of the Incident Response lifecycle. (PICERL) Once you’ve tested and/or adapted the collection for your environment, consider prepping a handful of drives and having them pre-deployed to sites where you’re likely to need them.

The Setup

First off you’re going to need a high-capacity USB device. Larger sized flash drives will work. Personally I’m a fan of Samsung (T series) SSD drives, both for their size and their write speeds during acquisitions.

On the root of the USB device:

  • A (initially empty) folder named ‘Collections’
  • KAPE directory from default KAPE installation
  • EDD.exe in \KAPE\Modules\bin\EDD (Encrypted Disk Detector)
  • CSIRT-Collect_USB.ps1
  • MRC.exe (Magnet RAM Capture)


To run the script, open an elevated PowerShell prompt and browse to the USB device. Then simply

CSIRT-Collect_USB.ps1 starting

What it Captures

The first process the script runs is Magnet RAM Capture. Once the RAM has been captured, the windows build (profile) is captured. The RAM image and the build info are named to reflect the asset hostname being collected.

The next process is the KAPE Triage collection. Host artifacts are acquired and then assembled as a .vhdx (portable hard disk) image. After the KAPE Targets portion completes, KAPE calls the Encrypted Disk Detector module which checks the local physical drives on a system for TrueCrypt, PGP, VeraCrypt, SafeBoot, or Bitlocker encrypted volumes. This information is saved into the Collections directory, as well as displayed to the responder to identify other volumes that may need to be collected while the system is live.

Lastly, if BitLocker is enabled for the OS drive the script will capture that information as well and back-up the recovery key.

Disk Encryption Check

Collection Contents

Inside the Collections folder, a subfolder will be created for each asset collected. The size of the USB device will determine how many collections can be captured before the results need to be offloaded.

The \Collections\%hostname% directory will include:

  • Console log capturing all KAPE targets activity
  • .vhdx of the host artifacts
  • collection complete date/time .txt
  • Memory acquisition .raw
  • Windows profile (build information) .txt

In the \Collections\%hostname%\Decrypt folder you will find

  • console log for KAPE modules (EDD)
  • recovery key for BitLocker (C) volume .txt
  • Live Response directory with the output of EDD .txt




VS Code Interactive Notebooks

I’ve been using Visual Studio Code as my go to editor for PowerShell, JSON, plain text, and recently even a dash of Python. VS Code is very extensible and much like the App Stores we’ve come to know, there’s an extension marketplace to broaden its capabilites.

One of my favorite extensions is the .NET Interactive Notebooks. Notebooks combine markdown text and code snippets that you can run right within the notebook. This can be very useful for designing playbooks for a SOC or Junior Analyst to execute as you can describe and provide guidance on how to utilize the code functions.

An easy way to get started with Interactive Notebooks is to create a “Quick Codes” notebook. Title it as you choose. For this particular notebook, I’ve got a number of commands saved that I may reference semi-frequently, but due to limited space in my mind palace I wind up googling them anyway, even if it’s googling my own site.

Trying to remember a specific PowerShell syntax

Note before installing:
As your scripts and notebooks develop, there is a likelihood that you will want to run some either as Administrator or using another user credential. One way to do so simply launch VS code (right click) as Admin, or use the Run As feature when you launch the application.

  1. Download and install VS Code.
    Note – as you may be running this with multiple credentials, the “System” installer is recommended.
  2. Install the latest .Net SDK
  3. When inside VS code, bring up the Extensions view by clicking on the Extensions icon in the Activity Bar on the side of VS Code, or the View: Extensions command (Ctrl+Shift+X).
    Search for “interactive”
    Select .NET Interactive Notebooks and choose install

Once everything is all set, relaunch VS Code.

Hit Ctrl+Shift+P and select .NET Interactive – Create New Blank Notebook.

That’s it. Now start adding blocks for text and code. You can use simple markup codes for Heading (#), Heading 2 (##), Heading 3 (###), etc.

To execute the code snippet, just click on the small ‘play’ arrow to the left.

Do you have any novel uses for Interactive Notebooks? If so, please share in the comments area.