We help IT Professionals succeed at work.

Reverse engineer vb.net 1.1 exe

etiennedemers asked

I have an exe file that I programmed using vb.net 1.1 but I lost the code. I need to make adjustments to my software and am wondering if it is possible to reverse engineer the code back to a vb.net project...

I protect my exe with a Secutech dongle and I was fortunate enough to be able to undelete an exe that was not encrypted. Unfortunately, it is not the last version and I need to sort out some known bugs.

Please help, I am not trying to steel someone else's code. This exe was created on my laptop with my present legal Visual studio .net 2003 installed on my laptop.

Ideally a free solution. Does Visual Studio provide means to doing this already?

Many thanks.
Watch Question

you can use .Net Reflector : www.reflector.net/


I downloaded and tried this but unfortunately it does not support vs.net 2003.. It supports 2005 and up.

When I export the assembly source code and then try to open the vbproj it creates, I get the following error:

Unable to read the project file ''osd.vbproj'. It is not a valid project file. The project file is missing the 'VisualStudioProject' section.

If I open a .vb, I see the code but cannot see the form...

Any suggestions?



above comment is for reflector.net


"Check this

tried it and was able to open the project after I renamed the files and re-included them in my project but the forms could still not be generated and I had a lot of errors...


Could you get the type of the error, will help to narrow down as whether it's related to any third part reference or .Net error
Most Valuable Expert 2012
Top Expert 2014

Even if you get the source code, it would not be same as you wrote it. All the variables are renamed and its difficult to understand the code let alone make changes.
Éric MoreauSenior .Net Consultant
Top Expert 2016

you will never be able to get your project exactly as it was before you compiled whichever tool you are using


Thanks for your help, I was able to get dirty code from my exe which allowed me to rebuild my application...