Web Applications Introduction


The purpose of this activity is to get you acquainted with the overall layout of several web applications.


This activity is for groups of 2-3 people. You may want to do the activity in IE since Chrome has some built-in protecion mechanisms.


  1. Prior to the activity (preferably during the lecture), download our XAMPP portable installation. Unzip it using 7-zip by right clicking on the file. You may also use the standard zip file extractor, but this can take 10 minutes.
  2. When the activity has started, go to your unzipped XAMPP directory, and run setup-xampp.bat. This will go through a couple of tests, and will eventually ask you if you want to "refresh" (option 1). Take that option, and the setup will finish.
  3. Create a GoogleDoc called "Web Application Vulnerabilities" and share it with the instructor.
  4. Run the following. Note: some of these may ask for administrator privileges to open up the firewall, do not allow! Even if you're on your own machine, you don't want to expose your local machine as a server to vulnerable web applications.
  5. Start up a browser and go to (http://localhost will not always work with this setup). Note the passwords for the various intentionally-vulnerable apps.
  6. Log in to Damn Vulnerable Web Application. This is an interactive site for learning how to exploit various web application vulnerabilties.
  7. Go to DVWA Security, and change the security level to "low".
  8. Go to Setup, and hit "Create/Reset Database"
  9. Go to SQL Injection, and construct an exploit for returning all user names in the table. Here are a few hints:
  10. In your GoogleDoc, answer the following:
  11. Switch the security level back to "low".
  12. Now let's practice XSS. Go to XSS reflected and attempt a simple XSS (as demonstrated in class)
  13. Answer the following in your GoogleDoc:
  14. If time allows, construct an exploit for Command Execution. Log that into your GoogleDoc.
  15. You can also play with a new vulnerable app called bWAPP. Go to and install bWAPP first. Then go back and enter the site with the appropriate credentials and play around with it. bWAPP is a more extensive version of DVWA.

Submission & Grading

Share your document with your instructor and course assistant. They will provide feedback on the document, but this will not be graded.

Mac or Linux?

We don't officially support Mac/Linux for this class, but many students find a way to work with this. Here are some useful resources: