Overthewire.org Bandit Level 9 -> 10

Level Goal

The password for the next level is stored in the file data.txt in one of the few human-readable strings, preceded by several = characters.

Walkthrough

Login to the server using the password obtained from the previous level Bandit level 8 -> 9.

username: bandit9

ssh bandit9@bandit.labs.overthewire.org -p 2220

Based on what the level goal tells us the file data.txt we will be searching will contain a mix of data and human-readable text.
The password that we will be searching for is human-readable and is preceded by several = characters.

First thing first lets see what the contents of data.txt looks like.

bandit9@bandit:~$ ls
data.txt
bandit9@bandit:~$ cat data.txt
Llω;ßOܛǤXNdT$x7@D@o+DBM֢Z/,_w#5
Ўe&-ϢQ8J%fa
np6l
|cWW"&8f
VJ$S~d
pkU;ֿvAmHtɘ3ߘ(ǟE'
':uPעg
>'.9oc?D.\UU,L},
)W[b;D51
cD^!`PKT5?)X爓F]2J-5|PrL{�DX
7<ʗE2Qk)>QGnW([>L[ŵ-GwJp_pTE}-��
v7[d4[Eed{s5d!۫*.d
CrAG1~趤b2%0`c*!`3r/ZȆڎxʟ}}$x?X7ҟjͽ黜`&
Q9܅J//M$a^;yzEt!pU~eϸ`Rn,IMTՁB$1,ɚџ|\{ɘV媼G74@[tk4ӶhobXQ��O`<!LVSXdKium��m\WB|{,xvdТxIY.}м&F,0fRV{l#@^SJp`EO%s~֬c}o?/
r-4
GhG$========== the*2i"4kDsxz]+aƽg|Ax*_f^[Ro+OQf3,UtGy*
r\P0Z}آIǢك,ä(I%

We can see alot of lines that look like gibberish (human unreadable).
There is some lines of text that have multiple = in them.
These are the lines we want to extract from the file.

We can do this manually searching the file line by line, it will be slow.
A faster method is to use strings command.
The strings command will find all human-readable strings in a file.

bandit9@bandit:~$ strings data.txt
Z/,_
WW"&8
2Qk)
xWa_
x?Xn
//M$
;yzEt!
WpU~e
`Rn,I
VSXdK
WB|{
GhG$


Now that we can find all human-readable strings we can search these lines for the = characters that we know will precede the password.
To search text for a specific word or characters we can use grep command again.

Running grep on the output of strings command will get the password for the next level.

bandit9@bandit:~$ strings data.txt | grep ====
========== the*2i"4
========== password
Z)========== is
&========== truKLd##########################