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I assume these are some sort of bots, but would like to know what are they trying to do to my server.

The logs in questions are below and the IP address has been changed from the original.

12.34.56.789 - - [18/Oct/2012:16:48:20 +0100] "\x86L\xED\x0C\xB0\x01|\x80Z\xBF\x7F\xBE\xBE" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [18/Oct/2012:16:50:28 +0100] "\x84K\x1D#Z\x99\xA0\xFA0\xDC\xC8_\xF3\xAB1\xE2\x86%4xZ\x04\xA3)\xBCN\x92r*\xAAN\x5CF\x94S\xE3\xAF\x96r]j\xAA\xC1Y_\xAE\xF0p\xE5\xBAQiz\x14\x9F\x92\x0C\xCC\x8Ed\x17N\x08\x05" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [18/Oct/2012:16:58:32 +0100] "g\x82-\x9A\xB8\xF0\xFA\xF4\xAD8\xBA\x8FP\xAD\x0B0\xD3\xB2\xD2\x1D\xFF=\xAB\xDEC\xD5\xCB\x0B*Z^\x187\x9C\xB6\xA6V\xB8-D_\xFE" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [18/Oct/2012:17:06:59 +0100] "\xA61[\xB5\x02*\xCA\xB6\xC6\xDB\x92#o.\xF4Kj'H\xFD>\x0E\x15\x0E\x90\xDF\xD0R>'\xB8A\xAF\xA3\x13\xB3c\xACI\xA0\xAA\xA7\x9C\xCE\xA3\x92\x85\xDA\xAD1\x08\x07\xFC\xBB\x0B\x95\xA8Z\xCA\xA1\xE0\x88\xAEP" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [18/Oct/2012:17:13:53 +0100] "b\xC4\xA24Z\xA2\x95\xEFc\xAF\xF1\x93\xE8\x81\xFD\xB4\xDEo\x92\xC0v\x1Fe\xD8W\x85\xC7O\x9D\x8C\x89<" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:09:56:39 +0100] "\x93d\xD8\x85\xD3f\x182\x94\x10\xE6y\x06\x7F\xE5\x97\xA8S\x8AfZ\x84\x0C\x0F\xFD\x19d*+\x09%\xEC3EG\xDD:Tn\xDA" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:07:10 +0100] ">\x92\xD7\x85\xC2\x5C\xDA\x8CJX\xBE\x87\x01\xBA\x09\xADj\xEDT.\x02z\x0B\xCA\x00\xAC\xDC[_;q\xC15\x17\xE9\x0B\x9F\xDA;\xEC\xDA)\xB8\x91\xA2\xB5P\xE9\x81\xF2\xD5\xD3\xC4\xD3" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:09:53 +0100] "\x12\x9E>\xFC\xF4\x07,\x9A\xF5G\xB4\xD0\xD4\xF1\xCB9\x9FRl\xB0\xDB\x84a\x90\x7F{\xB1\xA3\xD9-5\xF8\x94~\xCEm\x87\xEC\xB4\xE2s\xBD\xDB@" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:24:49 +0100] "\x98\xCA\xD3\x95|&t\x1Cp\x02\xF7\x88m\x08T\xE7tm\x9E\x04\xFB\x85\xB7\x08\xB3\xA0-Z\x03\xD5O\x98\xC6\x0EK|\xA1" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:27:58 +0100] "\x11\xE8.^\x0E\x8B}\x81\xAD\xA3^\x9E\xDFg2?@\xCB\x1Ej\xC7h\xB00\xF0\xDC\x92\x9B@\xFD\xBChB\xBF7tF\x17+W\xFFV\x8F" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:40:43 +0100] "Ou\xB3\x89\x8DiB\x82\x9D\xE8?wshxLF'\x0F\xB2o\xF6\xCD\xFC\xC2\x82ck\xC4\xF7\x0F\x01\xBC\x8B\xDA\x93|\xEAL\x81\xED`Rbr\x0F\xC1\xC8T\xDE\x07\x91\xF5|J\x5C\xBD70\x22\xD5\xA5p\xF4\xF4\xAA\xC2\xF2a\x19\xFE" 400 172 "-" "-"
12.34.56.789 - - [19/Oct/2012:10:41:29 +0100] "[8]\xCC\x7F\x1E\xA9\xE6f\xD7<\xA9\x18\xD9\xC0\xD0j~O\x90C\x8D]hVz\x84\x94y]\x95{.\x13m_];W1\x16\xEF\xD6\xE2" 400 172 "-" "-"

The above is from the same IP address over a period of time. Any insight into this is appreciated.

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2 Answers

First of all I would try to decode this hex.

As far as I noticed those are random chars. Are you familiar with this ip adress? Is it only one or plenty adresses? You tried to look it up?

And probably - some script-kiddie found "best exploit ever" and want to test something or some kind of worm is looking for bug in your nginx.

Please - verify you nginx version and try looking up in changelog something familiar to random chars nginx bug.

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Similar behavior is observed when a BitTorrent client uses port 80 to connect to their peers.

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