TryHackMe: What It Is & How to Get Started

If you are someone with the slightest interest in Cyber Security, chances are that you already have heard about TryHackMe. In this article, we are going to break down all the features of the platform along with sharing our honest feedback.

TryHackMe addresses the difficulty in gaining Cyber Security education through a gamified approach. The platform has been growing ever since its first release and has managed to gain a loyal user base of over 492,000 people. It has also become popular among Cyber Security mentors and professionals, hence gaining a higher reputation.

Story Time

The dream started back in 2018 when 2 college students, Ashu Savani and Ben Spring, had the idea to upload all of their notes on a centralized platform that is accessible to all for free. This idea was born due to flaws in the learning system that they recognized early on and had the will to resolve them.

They allowed the creation of virtual rooms on the platform which held information in both theory and practical form. Later, the community grew on to become one of the biggest in Cyber Security.

Getting Started

To get going with the platform, visit their official website and create a new account. You will be greeted with your dashboard. Start poking around and get used to the dashboard as you will face it every time you log in.

Rooms

The basic element of TryHackMe is a “room”. This is the place where you can learn relevant skills through CTF’s, challenges, guides or walkthroughs. You can think of these rooms like mini security labs which offer connection through OpenVPN.

Learning Paths

These are structured learning paths that help master a particular domain of Cyber Security through the completion of rooms in an orderly fashion. The paths are made up of modules and also feature a certificate of achievement once completed. The pathways are accessible only to the premium members of the platform.

Modules

These are made up of bite-size rooms and help grasp rather small yet critical topics in Cyber Security. These topics can be absorbed much more efficiently through these “modules”.

Networks

This is one of the most hands-on and informative spaces. This features a network of computers and devices that are vulnerable. Currently, there are only 2 of these “Networks” available, namely Throwback and Wreath. Completing one also awards you with a certificate but more importantly, it builds up confidence in the student.

King of the Hill

One of the most liked features of TryHackMe, King of the Hill (KoTH), is a competitive playground for more advanced learners in the sector, where you play against 10 players to gain root access to a vulnerable machine. To win the game, you need to maintain root access for the highest amount of time and simultaneously patch vulnerabilities so that rivals don’t get the root too.

Ranking & Leaderboards

Users get points after completing every room and hence get assigned a level. Gradually, the players can level up through gaining more points. The Top-100 players from each country are featured in their respective leaderboards, and a global leaderboard also ranks everyone and features Top-100 in the world. All the ranks (in order) can be found below:

Title / Rank Points Required
0x10
0x2200
0x3500
0x41,000
0x51,500
0x62,000
0x73,000
0x8 [Hacker]4,000
0x9 [Omni]8,000
0xA [Wizard]12,000
0xB [Master]15,000
0xC [Guru]17,000
0xD [God]20,000
Level System

Free Vs. Premium

The platform has 2 modes, namely “Free” and “Premium”. Although a huge amount of content is available for free, some additional features like Pathways, AttackBox, Premium content and access to faster machines can be unlocked by going premium for $10/month.

The platform has a plethora of information with an extremely user-friendly interface. Through personal experience, we highly recommend the platform to professionals across all levels. Its minimal UI gives the platform an addictive appeal and the ranking system tops it off with a competitive edge. Even paying for the premium subscription is worth every buck considering the features provided.

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