5. Haka language

Haka is a Lua-based language designed to provide a quick way to analyze networking protocols. Lua is a simple scripted language. If you are not familiar with it, you might find helpful to check the language manual and examples. You should find many informations on various website, but a good starting point is the official Lua page at http://www.lua.org/.

Haka API is built upon Lua language. It allows the end-user to define security rules and to specify protcols and their underlying state machine.

5.1. Security rules

Haka allows users to define security rules in order to filter unwanted packets, alter their contents, drop them or craft new ones and inject them. A security rule consists of a hook and an evaluation function where the user has full access (read and write) to all packets fields (headers and data) and a set of utility functions.


haka.rule {
    hook = ipv4.event.receive_packet,
    eval = function (pkt)
        if not pkt:verify_checksum() then
            -- raise an alert
                description = "invalid checksum",
                sources = { haka.alert.address(pkt.src) },
            -- drop packet

5.2. Protocol grammar

Haka is featured with a grammar allowing to specify both text-based and binary-based protocols. Its building blocks allow to handle parsing of sequential records as well as of branching records. It supports also many basic types such as bytes, numbers, regular expressions, etc.

Example: The code below is a snippet of icmp protocol specification

icmp_dissector.grammar = haka.grammar:new("icmp")

icmp_dissector.grammar.packet = haka.grammar.record{
    haka.grammar.field('type',     haka.grammar.number(8)),
    haka.grammar.field('code',     haka.grammar.number(8)),
    haka.grammar.field('checksum', haka.grammar.number(16))
        :validate(function (self)
            self.checksum = 0
            self.checksum = ipv4.inet_checksum_compute(self._payload)
    haka.grammar.field('payload',  haka.grammar.bytes())

5.3. Protocol state machine

Haka allows to describe protocol state machine which is usefull to manage tcp transitions for instance. A state machine is defined as a set of states and a set of transition functions between these states. Haka has predefined states and transitions to handle common situations such as catching errors and managing timeouts.


reset = tcp_connection_dissector.states:state{
    enter = function (context)
    timeouts = {
        [60] = function (context)
            return context.states.FINISH