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  1. Using pspy64 I can see that run-parts is triggered on login.

  2. Find the PATH of order the scripts are executed: jkr@writeup:~$ echo $PATH /usr/local/bin:/usr/bin:/bin:/usr/local/games:/usr/games

  3. Look at the path for run-parts to see if I can exploit the order: jkr@writeup:~$ which run-parts /bin/run-parts

  4. Noticed that both /usr/local/bin and /usr/bin is before /bin in order of script execution. So I made a reverse-shell script called run-parts and placed it in the /usr/local/bin dir.

  5. Start nc on local host, log out and in again from jkr@writeup to trigger scripts and boom - reverse root shell.

ÖVRIG INFO OM PATH: Q: If there are multiple executable files in PATH with the same name which one is preferred? A: It stops at the first one it finds, reading $PATH left to right.

Q: Is current directory included in the search when file is executed? A: If the current directory is in PATH then it is searched. Remember that an empty directory in PATH includes the current directory. e.g. PATH=:/usr/bin (leading empty) PATH=/usr/bin: (trailing empty) and PATH=/usr/bin::/bin (middle empty) will all effectively include current working directory.