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How can I protect my software?

Posted on 2010-11-30
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Last Modified: 2012-05-10
Hi there;

I implemented a software in visual basic and completed it successfully, but when I reverse engineer it, I cracked my software.

So, my question is that "How can I protect my software?" against bit manipulation of known tools?

Kind regards.
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Question by:jazzIIIlove
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10 Comments
 
LVL 40

Assisted Solution

by:Kyle Abrahams
Kyle Abrahams earned 2000 total points
ID: 34241738
define cracked?  What exactly are you trying to protect from or hide?
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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:jazzIIIlove
ID: 34244252
In a diassemly of my software, I jumped from addresses to another addresses and cracked my own software.

I implemented it in visual basic. How can i provide a security mechanism for my software?

Regards.
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LVL 40

Assisted Solution

by:Kyle Abrahams
Kyle Abrahams earned 2000 total points
ID: 34250466
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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:jazzIIIlove
ID: 34250718
I alreaady obsfucated my code, but the problem is I still can crack back my software.
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LVL 40

Assisted Solution

by:Kyle Abrahams
Kyle Abrahams earned 2000 total points
ID: 34257315
Again, what do you mean by crack?  

Are you talking bypassing some sort of protection or making unintended behavior or what?  Without getting into specfics there's nothing that can be done.

Also, as they pointed out, there's no *true* way to totally block your code.  Everything gets compiled into machine language and people can build up from there.
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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:jazzIIIlove
ID: 34264567
I know there is no perfect secrecy. My issue I disabled some modules of the program for trial use but I easily find out the instruction to crack it and that drove me crazy. I need some strategies at least to give the impression for the cracker that cracking is unfeasible in a timely fashion...

Regards.
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LVL 40

Assisted Solution

by:Kyle Abrahams
Kyle Abrahams earned 2000 total points
ID: 34283209
I would honestly provide 2 binaries, it's the best way to ensure that the modules don't get cracked.  Just comment them out for the trial.

I'm not sure if using the compiler declaritives would work, in that case you can have a release mode for trial where you could do something like

#if trial
   exit sub
#end if

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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:jazzIIIlove
ID: 34411456
You mean one binary for trial, one for full licensed? and if the user enters/inputs the right "thing" for enabling the software, which binary should be in charge for this?

I may be confused with your last comment, please explain further...

P.S. I am a little late. sorry for this.
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LVL 40

Accepted Solution

by:
Kyle Abrahams earned 2000 total points
ID: 34464734
Correct, 2 binaries.  say: trial.exe,  full.exe

I would recommend they BOTH be in charge of checking for registration.    

1)  Make a copy of the hardware being used (MAC - CPU Chip, Motherboard version) and hash it to get a unique code

2)  Write that value so that full.exe has access to it (registry usually).  

On startup, ensure that the registry value matches the hash of the current code, and that you have the same machine hardware specs.  If someone changes there NIC card or CPU, this will become invalid and you'll have to let them re-register.


The purpose of having 2 binaries is so that the other can't be hacked / unassembled.  In that case, you would want the trial version to also go get the full version form somewhere.  (Either using a binary reader to write the file http://www.experts-exchange.com/Programming/Languages/C_Sharp/Q_26301264.html or dynamically download the file from  a secured location).

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LVL 12

Author Comment

by:jazzIIIlove
ID: 34604690
I don't know why hesistate to reply back but yes you are right.
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