Decompile exe to Readable Code

Posted on 2009-05-13
Last Modified: 2012-05-06
I am wondering if there is a way to decompile an .exe to readable source code.  If one were to include sensitive information in an exe, is it safe?  Thoughts?

If you would like a test file, post and I will see what I can do.
Question by:APasquali
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Author Comment

ID: 24380555
Tried both of those, didnt help.
LVL 50

Expert Comment

ID: 24380688
APasquali--"Tried both of those, didnt help'
Just what is it you are looking for on this subject?
And what is the offer you make about a test file?  Do you have a method to decompile .exe?
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LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Mohamed Osama
ID: 24380984
Reflector and File disassembler should do just fine for .NET VB / C# applications 
however there is no universal tool to do this , reverse engineering is a big topic , so you may want to be a bit specefic here
- what programming language is this executable coded in?
- is it packed ?, if so you will need to unpack it
- if you are just looking for readable text strings , open it using a Hex editor like Winhex or Hexit, look for text strings
there is also a nifty tool called PEEK, which will allow you to peek inside an executable through a simple shell extension.
there are also more advanced techniques to reverse an exxecutable , like memory dumping ,but you will require some assembly & solid knowlege  of disassembly / reverse engineering tools .


Author Comment

ID: 24381105
I want to know if anyone who has an exe can decompile the exe and pull any type of valuable information from it and just how easy it is.
I will attach an exe I have created and I would like to see if there is a method of pulling the actual code out of it.  
Change the .doc extension to .exe and it should be good to go.  The file will just open your network connections window.

I am looking at this as if you received the exe with out my knowledge and you wanted to hack it to pull valuable info out of it.
I have tried some hex dumps but have not been able to pull anything useful from it.  I am looking into that peek program.

My main question is how hard is it to hack an exe and pull info from it with out having any prior knowledge of it.

LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Mohamed Osama
ID: 24381247
I was able to note this an AutoIT compiled executable , below  link t will elaborate more on reverse engineering those.


Author Comment

ID: 24381252
How did you find it was an AutoIT executable?
LVL 23

Expert Comment

by:Mohamed Osama
ID: 24381261
it even gave away AutoIt version used

LVL 23

Accepted Solution

Mohamed Osama earned 500 total points
ID: 24381287
there are also text strings in that executable that will give away it was packed using UPX which is used by AutoIT, as well as autoIT version , once Unpacked , a lot more of the code will show in a hex editor.
unpacking this & going through the previous link to obtain the original script is acheivable, if this is what you are asking.
hope this helps.


Author Closing Comment

ID: 31581261
Not really what I was looking for but it helped.  Mostly my fault for not being able to explain what I was looking for.

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