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Unidentified Code

Posted on 1997-11-19
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Last Modified: 2008-03-17
I am hoping someone can help me with this....... I have run across some "code" in some .dat and .idx files ....... what I am wondering is what kind of code is it ........ I know its not uuencodeing or MIME ..... also is it possible to decode/translate it into a readable form?

Here is a sample of what I am talking about:

a÷ŽE‹/†ø
4jXuÀ1nîp©gbþ晐(
d\«ªU o Á‡%#ç¸ÄçCp€*çø*å@¥d2åé!ÈVœž‚…§,\DYÔJÀ Í'?_wéß9QèhÓ†ú.‘ª>óé
–-U MõŽôJeANO‹‚'êÁ•]IQøú-
ÎõkúIªZÆRõ­Ãm_‡ù|¿cªÕ£æ¹ÀC©öa÷ŽE‹/†ø
4jXuÀ1nîp©gbþ晐(
d\«ªU o Á‡%#ç¸Äç C#å!÷ä.å2­`fêéI¬hVŽžè÷ÓP.tZY–á
Èhr^„ÍhéeßÔÖ•v/‘ª> õú—-UM¡ÖõJe:8œýa÷ŽE‹/†ø
4jXuÀ1nîp©gbþ晐(
d\«ªU o Á‡%#ç¸Äç C#å)åô(ò2­ef€‰óI½h:òñéíÉb%[Gçj»© 1‘è\èißÔÖ•v/‘ª> õú—-UM”,>a÷ŽE‹/†ø
4jXuÀ1nïp©gcþ晐(
d\«ªU o Á‡%#ç¸Äç C#å!÷ä.å2­`fêéI¬hVŽžè÷ÓP.tZY–á
Èhr^„ÍhéõßÔÖ•vÐênUÁóé
û—-TM…Öãœ,


I would greatly appreciate any help on the matter...... or if you know a better place to pose this question at please let me know......

Thanks
Opie
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Question by:cpl366
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8 Comments
 
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Expert Comment

by:david_r
ID: 1016612
I don't think you are asking the right question... *.dat and *.idx files are not text files ... the entire file is "code"  you would get similar results if you tried to view an *exe file ... Your text viewer (notepad?) is doing the best it can with the files are giving it...
These files should be opened with the programs that created them.  The *.idx are likely for internet mail... the *.dat could be from just about anything...
give more info if possible
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Author Comment

by:cpl366
ID: 1016613
the example listed came from a .dat file from the ICQ chat program..... files similar in nature are found in LOL chat and Pow Wow chat.... what I am trying to determine is if its some kind of computer coding (understood only by the computer) or if it is simply a encoding method that can be decoded and read by a human (MIME,uuencode, etc.)... if its one or the other is there a program other than the one that created the file that can turn it into a readable text file.....or is it simply a computer language .......
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Expert Comment

by:rigansen
ID: 1016614
it seems you're dealing with just a couple of binary files that will only can be read by the application that created them, it'd be almost impossible to read those files with some other program different from the one that use them.


regards, rigansen.
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Accepted Solution

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johnt082197 earned 50 total points
ID: 1016615
The best answer I can give you is to try to use a Hex editor program. I can give you URL's for that, I just need to find them first. Tell me if you want to.
The files you are trying to open are binary files. That's machine code, and only few people can read the actual data. This data doesn't normally look like what you showed. It's supposed to be hexadecimal numbers. But a Hex editor will translate parts that are translatable into human language.
From what I've seen, not much is translatable, though
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Expert Comment

by:rigansen
ID: 1016616
hey, not all the binary files are machine code, only the .EXE, .COM in case of a PC; not even .LIB or .OBJ or .DLL are machine code, only part of them. Besides, image files (ie. GIF's) are far from being machine code.

well, the point is that those files you're working with are binary files, storing some kind of data only known and understandable by the program that created'em.

sorry cpl366, but it seems there's nothing you can do about it.  :(

regards, rigansen.
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Author Comment

by:cpl366
ID: 1016617
Thanks that was what I was looking for......in essense what can be decoded/read would have to be done by a Hex editor.....and I gather not much then......that was exactly what I was wanting to hear.......
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Expert Comment

by:johnt082197
ID: 1016618
So... want a hex editor?
If not, you are free to grade the asnwer
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Expert Comment

by:johnt082197
ID: 1016619
Oops.. Sorry about that last comment. I hadn't noticed it had already been graded.
Take care
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