Blackdog Windows Startup Information

With the help of Ammon from Project Blackdog I was able to determine the following information about the startup of the Blackdog in a Windows Environment. Some general info:
  • The word TEMP refers to the Windows TEMP directory - specified by the TEMP enviornment variable.

  • All of the files that get executed on the PC get copied into the TEMP directory (as set in your environment) and executed from there, with the exception of Realm_autorun.exe - wich gets run directly from the CD.

  • The files are copied into TEMPRealmX - where "X" is a number starting with 1. If it can't access "Realm1" it tries "Realm2" etc.

  • Odd note, I had directories Realm1-Realm8 - wonder why.

  • The startup process is logged in TEMP/Realm.log
  • Copies Realm_manager.exe and mingwm10.dll to the RealmX temp directory.

  • Starts Realm_manager.exe, with the command line options --cdrom=X --parent-pid=999, where X = the drive letter of the BlackDog's USB CD Drive, and 999 = Process ID of the ?Realm_autorun.exe?

  • Some sort of locking takes place between Realm-autorun and Realm-manager, possibly socket based - not sure on this mechanism yet.

  • Realm-autorun.exe exits once the Realm-manager flag has been set.


  • Copies Realm-networking.exe, XMing, realm-cfg.exe, and realm_net.exe to the RealmX directory.

  • Runs "realm_net.exe -d X:" where X is the Blackdog USB CDRom device drive letter, and waits for it's output.

  • Next a bunch of output appears in the log that I don't understand - dealing with IP addresses and gateways.

  • Runs "realm_cfg.exe -d IP_address". Not sure how it determines the IP address.

  • Runs "Realm-networking.exe -a IP1 IP2", to set up the IP Tunnel (I think).

  • Runs "Xming/Realm-windowing -notrayicon -internalwm -fp tcp/IP2:7100" using the same IP Address for IP2 as was passed to Realm-networking.exe as IP2.

  • Hides the splash screen.

At this point the X programs take over and do the authentication bit.

Putting the dog to sleep

If you open a xterm and type "halt", the following happens:

  • Realm-manager realizes that something has changed, looks like the maybe the USB based Network card has disappeared.

  • Realm-manager.exe stops "Realm-networking.exe"

  • Realm-manager.exe stops "Realm-windowing"
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