• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic

Deobfuscation  RSS feed

 
Ash Whin
Ranch Hand
Posts: 31
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Google gave me a few java deobfuscators. I have a few questions before using them:

1) Are they effective at deobfuscating bytecode?
2) Will they produce any mistakes?
3) How legal is their usage?

All activity by me has acknowledged the author. I will not distribute the source code to anyone, whether modified or not.
 
Ulf Dittmer
Rancher
Posts: 42972
73
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
You may be lucky and get code that compiles, but generally you should not expect that.

The legality depends on the software you're decompiling - for example, most commercial software does not allow it.
 
Jayesh A Lalwani
Rancher
Posts: 2762
32
Eclipse IDE Spring Tomcat Server
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
If someone is obfuscating their code, it's a safe assumption that they don't want you using it without their permission. If I were you, I wouldn't go ahead with de-obfuscation unless I have the author's permission.
 
Ulf Dittmer
Rancher
Posts: 42972
73
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Well, you won't know that code was obfuscated until you have decompiled it :-)

Reading the license would in any case provide clarity.
 
Ash Whin
Ranch Hand
Posts: 31
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
It's Minecraft 1.8. I am making a modded server. So here is the story:

1) I try to make a server.
2) I find that vanilla sucks at making a server.
3) I find that bukkit, and every single third party mod, sucks as well (lag issues)
4) I decide to mod 1.8 source code - NOTE: There is not a single mod for 1.8 that is used in any server, or actually well known, in the world
5) I find freaken obfuscated code!

So, I can only mod half the thing.
This means I can play the game without an account, but I am not distributing my hacked version to anyone.

So, once I find a deobfuscator, I can actually mod the important stuff (which is obviously obfuscated)
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10575
66
Eclipse IDE Hibernate Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ash Whin wrote:All activity by me has acknowledged the author. I will not distribute the source code to anyone, whether modified or not.

So, perhaps the real question then is: Why do you want to use one?

Seventy years on from Turing, there's really very little we don't know about how binary computers work, nor how to do things right. So unless you regard this piece of code you're trying to crack as truly revolutionary and find out "how it ticks", there are almost certainly other ways to go.

They may well involve a bit more effort, but your understanding at the end will likely be far greater, which will make you a scientist, rather than a parrot.

And regardless of any legality, cracking code that someone has clearly gone to some lengths to hide, is certainly cheating. And if you ever USE it - no matter how "modified" - it's plagiarism.

That said, plagiarism can, on very rare occasions, be justified (this being a case in point), so it's up to you how you decide to proceed.

Winston
 
Ash Whin
Ranch Hand
Posts: 31
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
One last question before thread resolved:

How bad can so called "plagorism" be?
-When you are using it for self-learning purposes
-And little or none economics are involved
-And you are using it to teach others

Some people seem very biased here.
 
Ulf Dittmer
Rancher
Posts: 42972
73
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
I wouldn't call it "bias", I would call it "legality". Just read the license and you know what is and is not allowed. There is an absolute bias against discussing or advocating anything illegal here at the Ranch.
 
Winston Gutkowski
Bartender
Posts: 10575
66
Eclipse IDE Hibernate Ubuntu
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Ash Whin wrote:How bad can so called "plagorism" be?

As bad as your conscience dictates. In many cases there are no legal sanctions against it; but the academic world takes it very seriously, regarding it as a form of "dishonesty" (as does journalism). The Wikipedia page goes into quite a lot of detail about it.

-When you are using it for self-learning purposes
-And little or none economics are involved

Then one wonders why you're choosing to crack a piece of code that someone has clearly tried to protect. There are any number of programs out there - including almost the entire Java SE - that publish their source code. And going through it can indeed be very illuminating.

-And you are using it to teach others

Well, without knowing the details of what it is you're trying to crack, it's impossible to make a judgement; but at the very least I'd say that any knowledge gained (or given to others) is likely to be "a house built on stony ground"[*].

Personally, I'm not wild about "protected" software either - I think it's rather old-fashioned - but if an author chooses to do so, it's not up to me to crack his code just because I don't like it.

Have you, for example, tried contacting the author to see if he wouldn't mind sharing his code with the people you want to teach?

Some people seem very biased here.

Well, you posed the question, and you've got responses. Mine are my opinion; you don't have to like it.

Winston

[*] Mixed metaphor alert - I believe the house was built on rock; the seed was planted in stony ground.
 
With a little knowledge, a cast iron skillet is non-stick and lasts a lifetime.
  • Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
Boost this thread!