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Source code: how does editor protect their source code?

P: 3
Hi everybody.

I was just wondering how did editors were protecting their source code from decompilers and reverse engeneering.

I heard one method of source code protection was by obfuscation:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Obfuscated_code

Does every editor use Obfuscation? How does large software editor like Microsoft protect their source code? Do they manage to protect their source code?

Many thanks in advance.
May 14 '06 #1
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3 Replies


Banfa
Expert Mod 5K+
P: 8,950
Writing obfuscated code is not going to protect it from reverse engineering, it is just going to make it hard to debug and maintain.

Whether you obfuscated your code or not would make no difference to a reverse engineering program since all it has to go on is the binary code in the program itself, any code it outputs will be in a form set by the reverse engineering program.

By editor do you mean editor program ot person? No editting program uses obfuscation, most people do not use obfuscation except if the are entering an obfuscated code competition or writing some signiture type easter egg as suggested by the Wikipedia article your referenced.

Generally protecting the source code is not a issue, protecting the binary is the problem and if you read around the place (like The Register) for IT related news you will see that siftware piracy of the binaries of there programs and OS is an on going problem that it takes quite seriously.
May 15 '06 #2

P: 3
Writing obfuscated code is not going to protect it from reverse engineering, it is just going to make it hard to debug and maintain.

Whether you obfuscated your code or not would make no difference to a reverse engineering program since all it has to go on is the binary code in the program itself, any code it outputs will be in a form set by the reverse engineering program.

By editor do you mean editor program ot person? No editting program uses obfuscation, most people do not use obfuscation except if the are entering an obfuscated code competition or writing some signiture type easter egg as suggested by the Wikipedia article your referenced.

Generally protecting the source code is not a issue, protecting the binary is the problem and if you read around the place (like The Register) for IT related news you will see that siftware piracy of the binaries of there programs and OS is an on going problem that it takes quite seriously.
Thanks for your answer Banfa. I need to think about it. By "editor" I meant "Software companies" like Microsoft.

In any case protecting the binaries from illegal copy wouldn't be an issue since our company will give it away for free anyway. However, reverse engineering from binaries would still be an issue.
May 16 '06 #3

P: 3
You can do much better than regular obfuscation by using encryption with a tool like Assembly Lockbox (http://alb.gibwo.com)
Jul 7 '07 #4

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