Deploying More Honeypots


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 or has sudo privileges

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

If you haven't yet, please take a look at the overall project prerequisites page

Deploying More Honeypots

The following Honeypots are currently supported with CHN:

The general deployment model is the same for each of these: * Select the deploy script you wish to deploy via the web interface * Paste the "Deploy Command" into a VM host with Docker installed already * Verify installation succeeded by examining the command line output and checking the view sensor page on CHN Server

Customizing your deployments

To customize your deployment of a particular honeypot, you can copy an existing deployment script, change the drop down script selection option to "New Script", and paste into the script space. You can then create a new name, add notes, and save your new script.

You can then edit and re-save the script as desired. Some examples of items you might want to change include:

  • Changing the listening port in the docker-compose.yml file
  • Customizing options in the sysconfig file
  • Addition additional code to ease deployment such as installing docker-compose and adding the local user to the docker group

Please Note that you should generally not change the ports in the sysconfig files, but rather change the ports that Docker translates connections to (i.e., in the docker-compose.yml file). For instance, if you want cowrie to listen on port 4000, adjust the docker-compose.yml file like so:

version: '3'
    image: stingar/cowrie:1.9.1
    restart: always
      - configs:/etc/cowrie
      - "4000:2222"
      - "23:2223"
      - cowrie.env

Adding tags to your honeypots

Tags are a feature that allow you to add strings to your honeypot configuration, and those strings will be propogated through the data transport to your logging infrastructure. This can ease the data analytics processes by letting you add metadata about your sensor directly to your log data.

To configure tagging, simply add a TAGS variable to your sysconfig file. For instance:


This tag will then show up in your logs from hpfeeds-logger like this:

2019-02-19T20:34:56.425698 direction="inbound", protocol="ip", ids_type="network", tags="provider:aws,type:cowrie,owner:alex", dest="", ssh_username="system", app="cowrie", transport="tcp", dest_port="2223", src="", src_port="34038", severity="high", vendor_product="Cowrie", sensor="4a494c3c-51ab-4d9d-b55c-fbb6f14cc54f", ssh_password="shell", signature="SSH login attempted on cowrie honeypot", type="cowrie.sessions"

Guidance on tagging

The only rules around tagging are ensuring that you quote your list of tags, and we suggest not using spaces in your tags (YMMV). We suggest "key:value" formatted tags, as generally these are easy to parse out later and provide context. We have a few ideas on how tags might be used, which are captured below. Please do let us know what ideas you have for tags, or how you use them operationally!

# sensor location related tags

# data related tags

# Prehaps administrative groups are useful for automation purposes

Customizing honeypot behavior

Some honeypots, notably Dionaea and Cowrie can be customized substantially to change their network appearance and behaviors. Please see the sections on CHN for their "personalities", as well as the original honeypot documentation home to see options.