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What could be done to avoid a VFP a .exe to be decompiled ?

Posted on 2014-01-08
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Last Modified: 2014-01-12
Hi Experts!

What could be done to avoid a VFP a .exe to be decompiled and the code font exposed?

Thanks in advance.
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Question by:Eduardo Fuerte
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Expert Comment

by:CaptainCyril
ID: 39764941
It is very hard to keep VFP code from getting decompiled. There is ReFox which can expose the code very easy in the lower levels of security. In the higher levels of security, ReFox cannot expose the code from the file, but the code can be exposed from memory by a program written by Chinese hackers.

ReFox decompiles and protects the code at the same time. It depends on how you use it.

So putting it simply, there is no 100% security.
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Assisted Solution

by:pcelba
pcelba earned 250 total points
ID: 39764984
CaptainCyril is correct. Unfortunately.

The best way is to deliver the EXE together with source code. I am almost sure this way can avoid the EXE decompilation... :-)

Remember the fact not so many programmers know Visual FoxPro today. To go through thousands of lines of code is also not so easy... Who has time to do it today? Your big competitive advantage is you know the code and you have comments in the code. (Of course, if you keep the source in VCX and SCX files which are included in the app then everybody has the full source incl. comments.)

You may also think about rewriting some critical parts of your code into the C language and deliver them as a FLL library used by your app.

Also look here for this VFP compiler which can partially avoid decompilation: http://www.baiyujia.com/vfpcompiler/en/default.asp
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Author Comment

by:Eduardo Fuerte
ID: 39765007
My worst suspicions are in course

My site have been accessed from China and a lot of downloads of my apps were downloaded... I checked it by ip.

Maybe they are copying all my code now.

I don't know what could be done from here.

I'm going to ask net provider if it's possible to avoid China access...
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Expert Comment

by:pcelba
ID: 39765085
Each software appears on Torrents sooner or later... Would you sell your app in China?

People copying your app would never buy it.  BUT they can sell it which is not so good... The only way is to create new versions periodically so you are one step before them...

BTW, pirated Windows are much cheaper and they do have better support than the original version. So you have to be prepared for this situation...

I am not sure if your net provider can do something for you... To access your site from China via servers in the US is not so difficult...
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Author Comment

by:Eduardo Fuerte
ID: 39765116
But, as a workaround I'm going to apply some difficulties by myself that couldn't be related here  some spyes maybe could read <|- )
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Accepted Solution

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CaptainCyril earned 250 total points
ID: 39765579
To protect my code, I confuse the person who will read my code by switching variable names in the library or other places. I had many people pull their hair after reading my code :).
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Author Comment

by:Eduardo Fuerte
ID: 39765648
Maybe if I obtain your personal e-mails I'm going to tell you what I'm doing....
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Expert Comment

by:CaptainCyril
ID: 39765807
My nickname plus hotmail.com.
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Expert Comment

by:pcelba
ID: 39766092
Yes, to have variables and fields like mmmnnmnm, nmmnnmmm, mmnnmnn, etc. across the app is good idea. I've been thinking about such app scrambler BUT it could just invoke some descrambler development...

My address is in my profile here.
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Expert Comment

by:CaptainCyril
ID: 39766831
There are some good obfuscation programs for PHP. I never saw one for Fox.
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Author Closing Comment

by:Eduardo Fuerte
ID: 39775260
Thank you for the guidance. I'm keep struggling with this problem...
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