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Usb: Force Shut Down On Insertion


dracule
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Hello,

My friend's friend showed me a USB drive over the weekend that forced the computer to shut down. The computer did not go through the normal window shut down procedures but did a hard shut down like what would happen if you held down the power button.

The computer he plugged it into was a Windows 7 machine and it worked just as he told me. I did not have time to dissect the drive and he didn't know (he bought it in a shop), but I wanted to make one for myself.

Any clues on how to accomplish this? My first instinct was that the drive contained a script or program which forced the computer to shut down. So I was investigating this myself and found hak5 with their U3 hacking suite. I thought I could load a custom ISO with a script or program to force it to shut off, however, it appears that this will only work on XP and lower machines and what he had was a Windows 7 machine.

Any thoughts on the matter?

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The fact that this was a hard shutdown makes me suspect some code which directly address the ACPI.

Maybe something like this?

Or maybe it's just hardware which to the machine appears faulty and triggers some self-protect function, such as maybe shorting the +5 with GND, that sounds very dangerous though and I wouldn't try it :P .

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I don't think grounding a USB port would cause the system to power off, nor do I find it likely that the USB drive was running code, due to Windows' 7 default setting is not to run code from removable media, though he may have changed that setting, in which case all you need a .bat file that calls "shutdown /s /t 00"

Sounds like a hoax to me, but we need more information about the drive before we could tell you with any amount of certainty what the device may have been doing.

Now if you wanted to make a U3 Drive that runs a .exe that forcefully shutsdown the computer that would be trivial, but it would seem somewhat pointless because if you can insert a USB drive into a computer you probably have access to the power button....

Edited by sablefoxx
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Now if you wanted to make a U3 Drive that runs a .exe that forcefully shutsdown the computer that would be trivial, but it would seem somewhat pointless because if you can insert a USB drive into a computer you probably have access to the power button....

I love that part!! I think that maybe he was pressing the power button without you seeing?? Making it seem like the usb turned it off?? :)

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