Dionaea Honeypot

The CommunityHoneyNetwork dionaea honeypot is an implementation of @DinoTools's Dionaea, configured to report logged attacks to the CommunityHoneyNetwork management server.

"Dionaea's intention is to trap malware exploiting vulnerabilities exposed by services offerd to a network, the ultimate goal is gaining a copy of the malware."


The default deployment model uses Docker and Docker Compose to deploy containers for the project's tools, and so, require the following:

  • Docker >= 1.13.1
  • Docker Compose >= 1.15.0

Please ensure the user on the system installing the honeypot is in the local docker group

Please see your system documentation for adding a user to the docker group.

Important Note!

The env files, as well as the docker-compose.yml files below are intended to help you understand the various options. While they may serve as a basis for users with advanced deployment needs, most users should default to the configuration files provided by the deployment scripts in the CHN web interface.

Example dionaea docker-compose.yml

version: '3'
    image: stingar/dionaea:1.9.1
    restart: always
      - configs:/etc/dionaea/
      - "21:21"
      - "23:23"
      - "69:69"
      - "123:123"
      - "135:135"
      - "445:445"
      - "1433:1433"
      - "1723:1723"
      - "1883:1883"
      - "1900:1900"
      - "3306:3306"
      - "5000:5000"
      - "5060:5060"
      - "5061:5061"
      - "11211:11211"
      - "27017:27017"
      - dionaea.env
      - NET_ADMIN

Please note that while Dionaea will run without the NET_ADMIN capability set, it will consume 100% of a CPU and not function optimally.

Example dionaea.env file

Prior to starting, Dionaea will parse options passed to the container via the env_file specification in the docker-compose file. The following is an example env file:

# This can be modified to change the default setup of the unattended installation


# IP Address of the honeypot
# Leaving this blank will default to the docker container IP


# Network options

# Service options
# blackhole, epmap, ftp, http, memcache, mirror, mongo, mqtt, mssql, mysql, pptp, sip, smb, tftp, upnp
SERVICES=(blackhole epmap ftp http memcache mirror mongo mqtt pptp sip smb tftp upnp)


# Logging options

# Comma separated tags for honeypot

# A specific "personality" directory for the dionaea honeypot may be specified
# here. These directories can include custom dionaea.cfg and service configurations
# files which can influence the attractiveness of the honeypot.

Configuration Options

The following options are supported in the /etc/default/dionaea files:

  • DEBUG: (boolean) Enable more verbose output to the console
  • IP_ADDRESS: IP address of the host running the honeypot container
  • CHN_SERVER: (string) The hostname or IP address of the CHN Server to register honeypot.
  • DEPLOY_KEY: (string; REQUIRED) The deploy key provided by the feeds server administration for registration during the first startup. This key is required for registration.
  • DIONAEA_JSON: (string) The path to write out the Dionaea registration information.
  • LISTEN_ADDRESSES: (string) The IP address of the Dionaea network listener
  • LISTEN_INTERFACES: (string) The hardware interfaces to listen on for Dionaea network connectivity
  • SERVICES: (array of strings) The network services to enable for the Dionaea honeypot.
  • HPFEEDS_ENABLED: (boolean) Enable the hpfeeds handler module
  • FEEDS_SERVER: (string) The hostname or IP address of the HPFeeds server to send logged events.
  • FEEDS_SERVER_PORT: (integer) The HPFeeds port. Default is 10000.
  • TAGS: (string) Comma delimited string for honeypot-specific tags. Tags must be separated by a comma to be parsed properly. TAGS string must be enclosed in double quotes if string contains spaces.

Service Configuration

Note: Any time a configuration file is added, removed, or modified, either the dionaea service or the docker container must be restarted.

Configuring Dionaea services

The honeypot services running on Dionaea are highly configurable. The default configurations can be used to detect that the server is acting as a honeypot. Therefore, modifying these configuration files is recommended.

After Dionaea has been started, these services can be edited by modifying the yaml files in ./dionaea/services-enabled/

There are many options for each service, so we recommend referencing the official Dionaea documentation for services.

Enabling Dionaea services

To enable a new service after Dionaea has been built, you can run the following command to enable the service:

$ docker-compose exec dionaea cp /opt/dionaea/etc/dionaea/services-available/<service_config> /opt/dionaea/etc/dionaea/services-enabled/

For example, to enable FTP:

$ docker-compose exec dionaea cp /opt/dionaea/etc/dionaea/services-available/ftp.yaml /opt/dionaea/etc/dionaea/services-enabled/

Current Dionaea services available:

  • blackhole.yaml
  • epmap.yaml
  • ftp.yaml
  • http.yaml
  • memcache.yaml
  • mirror.yaml
  • mongo.yaml
  • mqtt.yaml
  • mssql.yaml
  • mysql.yaml
  • pptp.yaml
  • sip.yaml
  • smb.yaml
  • tftp.yaml
  • upnp.yaml

Disabling Dionaea services

If you wish to remove a service from the dionaea honeypot, you can simply delete the corresponding yaml file from ./dionaea/services-enabled/, and remove the relevant service from dionaea.env.

Adding a custom dionaea "personality"

You can add files to your dionaea honeypot in order to customize it's behavior. Currently the code supports custom versions of dionaea.cfg, and custom service configuration via a directory structure. See here for an example personality.

Once you have the custom files on the honeypot host, volume mount a directory containing these files to the container, and specify the directory name in the PERSONALITY env option.

For a more concrete example: let's say I want to include a dionaea.cfg file in a personality called 'sneakydionaea'.

First I'll create a directory called "sneakydionaea" on my honeypot VM with the dionaea.cfg file in it. It might look like this:

$ ls -l
total 12
-rw-r--r-- 1 me  me  1535 Apr 25 10:30 dionaea.env
-rw-rw-r-- 1 me  me  2115 Apr 25 10:29 deploy.sh
-rw-r--r-- 1 me  me   256 Apr 25 10:30 docker-compose.yml
drwxrwxr-x 2 me  me    42 Apr 25 10:43 sneakydionaea

$ ls -l sneakydionaea/
total 8
-rw-rw-r-- 1 me me 310 Apr 25 10:43 dionaea.cfg

Then make the following change to the docker-compose.yml:

      - configs:/etc/dionaea
      - ./sneakydionaea:/opt/personalities/sneakydionaea

and then modify the dionaea.env to specify the directory name in the PERSONALITY variable:

# A specific "personality" directory for the dionaea honeypot may be specified
# here. These directories can include custom fs.pickle, dionaea.cfg, txtcmds and
# userdb.txt files which can influence the attractiveness of the honeypot.

You should then be able to docker-compose down and docker-compose up -d at this point and the personality should take effect.


CommunityHoneyNetwork Dionaea is an adaptation of @DinoTools' Dionaea Dionaea software and Threatstream's Modern Honey Network Dionaea & HPFeeds work, among other contributors and collaborators.


Dionaea is licensed under the GNU GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE Version 2.0

The ThreatStream implementation of Dionaea with HPFeeds, upon which CommunityHoneyNetwork is based is licensed under the GNU LESSER GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE Version 2.1

The CommunityHoneyNetwork Dionaea deployment model and code is therefore also licensed under the GNU LESSER GENERAL PUBLIC LICENSE Version 2.1