Nmap Dashboard with Grafana

Original text by hackertarget

Generate an Nmap Dashboard using Grafana and Dockerto get a clear overview of the network and open services.

This weekend’s project uses a similar technique to the previous Zeek Dashboard to build an easy to deploy dashboard solution for Nmap results. 

Building small deployments like this gives the operator a greater understanding of how the tools work, developing skills that can be used to implement custom solutions for your specific use cases.

Explore the Nmap Dashboard, and dig deeper into your network analysis.

Introduction to Nmap Visualisation

Nmap is a well known port scanner to find open network services. Not only finding open ports Nmap is able to identify services, operating system and much more. These insights allow you to develop a detailed picture of the network or system. When viewing a single host the standard Nmap output options are sufficient but when you are analysing multiple hosts and perhaps even the same host over time it becomes more difficult.

By parsing the Nmap XML and populating an SQLite database we can use a Grafana Dashboard to analyse the data.

A primary aim of these  mini projects is to demonstrate how combining open source tools and building simple data processing pipelines we can create elegant solutions with real world use cases. At the same time the analyst or administrator will build valuable skills integrating the tools.

Generating the SQLite Data Source

First up we need some Nmap results in XML format. You can run any 

 command with 
-oA myoutput
 to generate XML output. This generates output in all (A) forms including XML.

user@ubuntu:~$ sudo nmap -sV -F --script=http-title,ssl-cert -oA myoutput

This command will create a file 

. The two scripts we are using here (http-title / ssl-cert) are non-intrusive but can provide valuable insight into the service. The script and dashboard include queries to parse the results from these two scripts. It would be easy enough to extend the python script and dashboard queries to customise for a specific use case with other scripts such as Microsoft SMB or other protocols.

git clone https://github.com/hackertarget/nmap-did-what.git

To parse the 

 file and create the SQLite DB we will run the included python script.

user@ubuntu:~$ cp myoutput.xml nmap-did-what/data/
user@ubuntu:~$ cd nmap-did-what/data/
user@ubuntu:~/nmap-did-what/data$ python3 nmap-to-sqlite.py myoutput.xml
user@ubuntu:~/nmap-did-what/data$ ls
nmap_results.db myoutput.xml

The sequence of commands above generates the 

 from the XML. Running the script again on other Nmap XML will append to the database. So simply run it against any results you wish to analyse.

Note the 

 listed above, this is the 
 database. The Grafana Dashboard is pre-configured with this DB as a data source and located in 
 in the container.

Grafana and Docker Compose

Now that we have our SQLite datasource with the Nmap data. We can start up the Grafana docker container and start our analysis.

Rather than install Grafana from scratch, this guide covers using docker to deploy a usable system in as little as a few minutes. The 

 config builds Grafana with a custom Nmap Dashboard and the SQLite data source installed.

user@ubuntu:~$ cd nmap-did-what/grafana-docker/
user@ubuntu:~/nmap-did-what/grafana-docker$ sudo docker-compose up -d
user@ubuntu:~/nmap-did-what/grafana-docker$ sudo docker ps -a
CONTAINER ID   IMAGE             COMMAND       CREATED         STATUS                      PORTS                                       NAMES
daba724a6548   grafana/grafana   "/run.sh"     1 hours ago    Up 1 hours       >3000/tcp, :::3000->3000/tcp   grafana

If you wish to customise the build, simply review the 

 file. The 
data sources
directories contain the configuration information for the creation of the SQLite data source and the Nmap Dashboard within the newly created Grafana container. These files could be extend to build multiple dashboards or use other data sources.

Accessing Grafana and Nmap Dashboard

Grafana should now be running on its default port of 3000, so from your browser access (or whichever IP you are running on).

The initial login will be admin/admin. This will need to be changed on first login. The authentication information and any changes to the Grafana configuration will be saved in the Grafana storage that was created with the 

. The 
 directory contains the running Grafana information. You can stop and start the docker container with changes being saved. If you remove this data the login credentials, and any changes to the Grafana configuration from the web console will be removed.

After accessing the Dashboard, the first thing you may need to change to see the data will be date range. Nmap data will be accessible and able to be filtered based on the date / time.

Using cron or a scheduled task you could run Nmap periodically and update the SQLite DB building a real time dashboard that displays your current network status and running services.


In this post, we explored the powerful combination of Nmap and Grafana for network monitoring and visualization. By leveraging Nmap’s network scanning and Grafana’s intuitive dashboard creation, we were able to get a detailed picture of our network, identify services and operating systems.