I was wondering : is there any tools related to unloaded system hacking ?

I am asking this question because it seems to me that in a lot of case, people have access to random computer physical and could, for example : Boot from a USB, mount the "normal" system drive and tamper with it with full access. Even if the bios is locked, extracting a drive from a computer and using a SATA to USB cable is possible.

I have not seen much discussion on the topic online, can someone provide me interesting links on the subject ?

  • 1
    What is an unloaded system?
    – Sjoerd
    Nov 10, 2016 at 15:35
  • probably offline system, without any access except of physical. Nov 10, 2016 at 16:33

1 Answer 1


There's quite a bit on this out of there - there's a general principle that physical access equates to full access on a system. There are methods that are designed to limit this - starting with full disk encryption, moving to Trusted Platform Module (TPM) systems in CPUs and support hardware that attempt to validate the firmware that is running and which have protected places for keys that are not susceptible to physical access (accessing them destroys them).

My understanding is that even with TPM, if someone REALLY, REALLY wants in and wants to spend the resources on it, they probably can.

x86 Considered Harmful describes some of the issues with Intel's current TPM and next gen TPM. The problem is fundamentally very very difficult.


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