3.13. Aurora

  • Aurora is a lightweight endpoint agent that applies Sigma rules and IOCs on local event streams.

  • It uses Event Tracing for Windows (ETW) to subscribe to certain event channels.

  • It extends the Sigma standard with so-called "response actions" that can get executed after a rule match

  • It supports multiple output channels: the Windows Eventlog, a log file and remote UDP targets

Its documentation can be found here.

3.13.1. Aurora Overview

Under Service Control > Aurora > Asset View (Deployed) the overview of all assets with installed Aurora is shown. Clicking on the entry opens a drop-down menu with details and additional information.

Aurora Asset View

Aurora Asset View

3.13.2. Deploy Aurora on Asset

You can als see an overview of all assets without Aurora installed under Service Control > Aurora > Asset View (Not Deployed) and install Aurora using the Deploy Aurora button. Those are all the assets which have the service controller installed, but the Aurora deployment was not done yet.

3.13.3. Change Service for an Asset

To change the Aurora configuration of an asset, navigate to Service Control > Aurora > Asset View (Deployed), select the asset's checkbox and choose > Change Aurora Configuration. Then choose the desired service configuration > by clicking Assign and Restart.

Change Aurora Service Configuration

Change Aurora Service Configuration

If you want to enable or disable the Aurora service on an or more assets, select them with the checkbox and use the Enable or Disable button. Alternatively you can use the play or stop action icon on a single asset to achieve the same.

3.13.4. Create a Custom Aurora Configuration

Go to Service Control > Aurora > Configurations > Add Configuration, enter a name and add the rulesets that should apply for this service configuration. No rulesets is a viable option, if you only want to use the non-sigma matching modules. You don't need to edit any other option as sane defaults are given.

Create a Custom Aurora Configuration

Create a Custom Aurora Configuration

3.13.5. Process Excludes

If Aurora uses too much CPU cycles, the most common reason is a heavy event producer on the system (e.g. anti virus or communication software). In order to analyze the issue and define process exclusions, go to Service Control > Aurora > Process Exclusions

Define Aurora Process Exclusion

Define Aurora Process Exclusion

An overview over the top event producing processes is given on the bottom of the section. Another possibility is to download a Aurora Diagnostics Pack and look in the status.txt at the event statistics by process.

3.13.6. False Positive Filters

If needed, false positives can be globally defined on all Aurora agents at Service Control > Aurora > False Positive Filters. It is recommended to filter false positives at Service Control > Sigma > Rules and filter the false positives on a rule level using the "edit false positive" action (funnel icon). For more details see False Positive Tuning of Sigma Rules. If this is not possible, because you need a quick fix and multiple rules are affected, the global false positive filter can help.

Define Global Aurora False Positive Filters

Define Global Aurora False Positive Filters


A too permissive filter will greatly reduce Aurora's detection and response capabilities.

3.13.7. Response Action Logs

You can view an overview and the logs of the Aurora response and simulated response actions under Service Control > Aurora > Response Action Logs.

Aurora Response Action Logs

Aurora Response Action Logs

3.13.8. Best Practices for Managing Aurora

  1. Install the ASGARD agent on the asset (see ASGARD Agent Deployment)

  2. Install the ASGARD service controller on the asset (see Service Controller Installation)

  3. Deploy the Aurora Service on the asset using the [Default] Standard configuration with critical and high Sigma rules

  4. configuration (see Deploy Aurora on Asset)

Aurora Service Successfully Deployed

Aurora Service Successfully Deployed

If you want to enable the blocking capabilities of Aurora, we suggest to enable our included responses:

  1. See the overview at Service Control > Aurora > Configurations. The Effective Rules and Response row shows how many responses are active. By default no responses are active. See How to activate Responses.

  2. Do not directly activate the responses in production environments. Monitor your environment for at least a month with simulated responses to verify that no false positive matches occur.

  3. In larger environments use different configurations and rulesets for different environments. As an example you can test changes to the configuration in a test environment, before adapting the changes for the production environment.

You can test the response functionality by entering the command

C:\Users\user>rundll32.exe AuroraFunctionTest.dll StartW

on the command line of an asset. As a result you should see following message in the Service Control > Aurora > Response Action Logs:

Aurora Service Successfully Deployed

Aurora Simulated Response Action

More tests are available from the Function Tests section of the Aurora manual. Those tests only generate detection events but no responses. If your ASGARD Management Center is connected to an Analysis Cockpit, you can see the detection events at Events > Aurora Events or in the Windows EventLog of the asset.