Security Administrator Tool for Analyzing Networks

Security Administrator Tool for Analyzing Networks ( SATAN short ) is a vulnerability scanner. It is mainly written in Perl and has a front-end for web browsers (web interface ) as it was then, for example, Netscape, Mosaic or Lynx. This easy-to -use interface enabling the scanning process and presented the results in a summarized form. SATAN also generated a significant number of network information such as the hosts that are connected to the network, what kind of machine it is and what services to offer them.


Wietse Venema and Dan Farmer published in 1993 the " seminal article " Improving the Security of Your Site by Breaking Into It in which she described ways the security of a system from the outside, to judge from the perspective of a potential attacker. On the basis of these considerations, two years later published the SATAN. The first version ( 0.1 beta ) was released on April 5, 1995.

In contrast to the time -spreading security analysis tools such as COPS (Computer Oracle and Password System) and Tiger, which only allowed the investigation of the system from the inside, SATAN offered a look at the security from the perspective of the attacker. He at that time was particularly due to the Web interface as the first user-friendly scanner of this type

The publication of the program led to conflicting reactions. While on the one hand, the availability of a comprehensive analysis tool that does not compromise the system, welcomes, has been criticized on the other side, that attackers would be given in the hand to a powerful tool. However, it turned out that running with SATAN scans were easy to spot and it thus had only limited use as an attack tool.

The English writer Neil Gaiman made ​​illustrations for the documentation.


The development of the program was discontinued in 1995; the latest official version (1.1.1 ) was released on 11 April 1995.

There are two further developments:

  • SARA (System Auditors Research Assistant) split, which was proceeding actively developed by the latest version of SATAN for 14 years. From Advanced Research Corporation, which was released in 1995 and is based on SATAN. Last updated 7.9.2a on August 1, 2009 in the version.
  • SAINT ( Security Administrator 's Integrated Network Tool) from SAINT Corporation (until January 2002 ' World Wide Digital Security, Inc. "," WWDSI "), which was first released in July 1998. The current version V7.8 was released on May 6, 2011.