What are these SIDs of the form S-1-15-3-xxx?

Raymond Chen

Last time, we decoded the mysterious S-1-15-2-xxx SIDs. Another family of SIDs you may run across are the S-1-15-3-xxx SIDs.

SIDs of the form S-1-15-3-xxx are app capability SIDs. These SIDs are present in the token of apps running in an app container, and they encode the app capabilities possessed by the app.

As I noted last time, the rules for Mandatory Integrity Control say that objects default to allowing write access only to medium integrity level (IL) or higher. Granting access to these app capability SIDs permit access from apps running at low IL, provided they possess the matching capability.

SID Description
Explicitly assigned
S-1-15-3-1 internetClient
S-1-15-3-2 internetClientServer
S-1-15-3-3 privateNetworkClientServer
S-1-15-3-4 picturesLibrary
S-1-15-3-5 videosLibrary
S-1-15-3-6 musicLibrary
S-1-15-3-7 documentsLibrary
S-1-15-3-8 enterpriseAuthentication
S-1-15-3-9 sharedUserCertificates
S-1-15-3-10 removableStorage
S-1-15-3-11 appointments
S-1-15-3-12 contacts
S-1-15-3-4096 internetExplorer
S-1-15-3-x1-x2-x3-x4 device capability
S-1-15-3-1024-x1-x2-x3-x4-x5-x6-x7-x8 app capability

You can sort of see how these assignments evolved. At first, the capability RIDs were assigned by an assigned numbers authority, so anybody who wanted a capability had to apply for a number. After about a dozen of these, the assigned numbers team (probably just one person) realized that this had the potential to become a real bottleneck, so they switched to an autogeneration mechanism, so that people who needed a capability SID could just generate their own.

For device capabilities, the four 32-bit decimal digits represent the 16 bytes of the device interface GUID. Let’s decode this one: S-1-15-3-787448254-1207972858-3558633622-1059886964.

787448254 1207972858 3558633622 1059886964
0x2eef81be 0x480033fa 0xd41c7096 0x3f2c9774
be 81 ef 2e fa 33 00 48 96 70 1c d4 74 97 2c 3f
2eef81be 33fa 4800 96 70 1c d4 74 97 2c 3f
{2eef81be- 33fa- 4800- 96 70- 1c d4 74 97 2c 3f}

And we recognize {2eef81be-33fa-4800-9670-1cd474972c3f} as DEVINTERFACE_AUDIO_CAPTURE, so this is the microphone device capability.

For app capabilities, the eight 32-bit decimal numbers represent the 32 bytes of the SHA256 hash of the capability name. You can programmatically generate these app capability SIDs by calling Derive­Capability­Sids­From­Name.


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  • Paul Jackson

    Yes, but what is S-1-15-2-2: All Restricted Application Packages? How is it different from S-1-15-2-1? I must find out!

  • Fredrik Orderud ge

    Thanks for a great article!

    Not sure if this is the right place to ask, but it would be great if Process Explorer could be extended to resolve more app capabilities into human-readable strings. I see that it’s already displaying “APPLICATION PACKAGE AUTHORITY\Your Internet connection” instead of S-1-15-3-1. However, other capability SIDs like “runFullTrust” (S-1-15-3-1024-1365790099-2797813016-1714917928-519942599-2377126242-1094757716-3949770552-3596009590) and “userNotificationListener” (S-1-15-3-1024-1195710214-366596411-2746218756-3015581611-3786706469-3006247016-1014575659-1338484819) are not translated the same way. This makes it awkward to check if an AppContainer process really has the expected capabilities.