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The Run Transforms Menu

Modified on: Tue, 30 Apr, 2024 at 5:18 AM

The Run Transforms Menu allows you to run Transforms on the selected Entities on your graph.

When you right-click on an Entity (or a group of Entities) the Run Transforms Menu is displayed. This menu is grouped into three different layers, namely the Top level, the Set level and the Transform level which are each explained in the following sub-sections.

Top Level (Hub Items)

The top level of the Run Transforms Menu is where the different Transform Hub items that you have installed are listed. 

By default, the Maltego Desktop Client will only have the Maltego Standard Transform Hub items installed from the Transform Hub. If Maltego only has a single Transform Hub item installed, the menu will open in the set level as there is only one item to choose from in the top level.

For this example, additional Transform Hub items have been installed.

In the image above, the Run Transforms menu has been opened for a domain Entity by selecting the Entity and right-clicking anywhere on the graph. Each line item in the menu represent a different Transform Hub item, clicking on one of these items will open the set level for that Hub item.

The first item in this list reads All Transforms and clicking it will skip the set level and open the Transform level of the context menu with all the Transforms listed for the selected Entity/s.

When you hover over a Transform Hub item, a Configure icon will appear. Clicking the Configure button will open a configuration menu for that Transform Hub item which allows Global Settings to be changed. These setting will be applied to the entire Transform Hub item.

At the bottom of the context menu the Action bar is found. This allows various actions to be performed on the selected Entities. Each of these actions will be described in later sections. The action bar remains the same regardless of what level you are on in the Transform Run menu.

Transform Set Level

Left-clicking on a Transform Hub item will take you to the set level. Transform sets are used to group Transforms into categories of Transforms that perform similar tasks and/or are often run together.

The image below shows the different sets available to a domain Entity in the Maltego Standard Transform Hub item.

Left-clicking the side-bar to the left of the Run Transforms menu will navigate up a level in the menu (in this case back to the Transform Hub level). Right-clicking anywhere on the Run Transforms menu will also navigate up a level. Each set includes a configure button (toolkit icon) which, when pressed, will open the set configuration window that will allow you to configure the Transforms that are included in the set.

Left-clicking the double arrow head (>>) will run all the Transforms in the set while left-clicking anywhere else will open the Transform level on the context menu for that set.

It is possible for the Transforms from a Transform Hub item to not be categorized into sets, in this case selecting the Transform Hub item in the context menu will go straight to the Transform level in the menu.

Transform Level

The Transform level of the context menu is where Transforms are run from. Left-clicking on a single Transform will run the Transform. Alternatively, you can left-click the single arrow icon (>) on the right side of the Transform Run menu. Clicking the Configuration icon in the Transform line item will open the Transform Manager with the correct Transform selected. The Transform Manager displays more information about the Transform as well as allows the configuration of the Transform settings – this will be discussed in later sections.

Clicking the Star icon in a Transform line item will add the Transform to your Favorites category which will always be listed at the top of the Transform Run menu as a separate category regardless of what level of the menu you are on.

Finally, hovering over a Transform line item will display a short description of what the Transform does.

It is important to note that the Transform Run menu is Entity specific meaning that the items that are shown in the context menu are related to the Transforms that are available for the Entity type that you have selected. If the graph selection includes Entities of different types, the Transform Run menu will include all items that are available to either of the selected Entities.

Action Bar

The Action bar, found at the bottom of the context menu, allows you to perform a range of actions on the selected portion of your graph. The ten actions from the action bar are labelled in the image below and then described further below that.

  • Copy to new graph: Copies your current selections to a new graph.
  • Delete Entities: Deletes the selected Entity. This can also be done using the Delete key on the keyboard.
  • Change Entity Type: Opens a dropdown menu that includes all Entities from the Entity palette. Picking an Entity from the dropdown will change all your selected Entities to that Entity type.

  • Merge Entities: Creates a single Entity with properties from all the Entities that were merged. Clicking the Merge action will open a window that is used to select a primary Entity for the merge. The primary Entity will take preference over the other Entities and its Entity type will be used for the newly merged Entity. 

The image below shows the merge window for three Entities being merged: a Person, an Alias and a Twitter Affiliation.

Merging these three Entities, and making the Twitter Affiliation the primary Entity, results in the image below. Note that the properties from the other two Entities are now in the Dynamic properties of the merged Entity:

Copy in different formats: Copy your graph selection in different formats. Each format is described below:

  • Copy (as GraphML): Copy your graph as an XML based graph format. This format will include information about the Entities and the links between the Entities in your selection.
  • Copy (as ‘value’ list): Copy a list of the Entities that are currently selected on your graph. The list will only include the value of the Entity and does not include any information about the links between Entities on your graph.
  • Copy (as ‘type#value’ list): Copy a list of the Entities that are currently selected on your graph as well as the Entity type. Each item in the list will be in the format ‘type#value’. The list does not include any information about the links between entities on your graph.
  • Copy (as ‘type#value#weight’ list): Copy a list of the Entities that are currently selected on your graph as well as the Entity type and weight. Each item in the list will be in the format: ‘type#value#weight’. The list does not include any information about the links between Entities on your graph.
  • Cut Entities: Cuts your Entity selection to your clipboard.
  • Add Attachment: Attach files to the Entity. Clicking this button will open a window to choose the file to be attached:

  • Send to URL: Opens a “developer friendly” feature in Maltego. It takes the selected segment of the graph and POSTs a hybrid GraphML/XML to the page which then returns a URL that Maltego will open in a browser.
  • Type Actions: Quickly search Google or Wikipedia for an Entities value. When a type action is run, your default web browser will open and the search will be performed there.
  • Clear and refresh images: Re-fetches all downloaded images on your graph.

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