disassembled code in ida

disassemble code in xcode

I have built an executable file (the architecture is ARMv7, the base SDK is iOS), which depended on an xxx.a file in xcode; I don't have the source code of thexxx.a.

I want to check some logic in `xx. So I copy the final executable file to my Windows PC, use IDA 7.5 to disassemble it. At the same time, I debug this file in xcode using lldb.

The pictures show some strange thing. There is an unk_xxx in IDA but in xcode there is some other ARM instructions.

Question one: Why there is an unknow flag in IDA views?

I searched this on Google but there is nothing valuable. Can there is a possibility IDA 7.5 can not support adrp instruction. So it treats instruction as adrl ,so some error happens.

Question two: Is there any way to fix it?

As there is an unk_xxx in IDA text view, I found some content missing in pseudocode. This blocked me to read the whole logic of this function. I hope someone can give me some insight, so I can push on.

Thanks very much!

When ADRL is been detected, unk_xxxx appears, then pseudocode of disassembling code of this function are missing.

Pseudocode miss in Ida

1 Answer 1


ADRL is a pseudo instruction and is normally encoded as two instructions according to documentation

so probably it is a different convention being followed by both those tool

ida is probably showing the pseudocoded ADRL
while the other one is showing a split double instruction adrp,add

also note ida's dispaly does not have the ...c8 while the other has it

  • Think you, blabb. Ida detect adrl , I do think it's fine . I add some descritions to the answer. Ida shoudn't miss some presudo code . If ida can not treat adrl ,it may detect it as two spit double instruction adrp and add. Now it treat it as adrl , not only the pseudocode of this instruct is missing ,and the pseudocode after the this instruction also missing . This is really unacceptable, and I can't carry on my analysis . I think this may be a bug of Ida. Can you give me some advice how to handle this situation ? Thanks very much!
    – KHacker
    Aug 17, 2021 at 6:57
  • Hi, Blabb. I think Adrl is affected by alsr. so ida can't get the real jump address . The real address is caculated at runtime. So the behaviour of ida is in expectations . Am I right?
    – KHacker
    Aug 17, 2021 at 9:04
  • I think I have made some mistake on my last comment . Although Adrl is affected by alsr, the disaccemble code should be adrl lable_offset, it shouldn't be unk_xxxx. There is another possibilty . Ida can't get the real jump address (offset of instruction to jump). The real address is caculated at runtime. So the behaviour of ida is in expectations .
    – KHacker
    Aug 17, 2021 at 9:23
  • aslr shouldn't matter post relevent text instead of image see what or where x9 is initialzed the last add has a18 in both so both representations seems right i am not that well versed in arm what i posted is an observation it was not about the quality of either tool
    – blabb
    Aug 17, 2021 at 10:13
  • You can disable the recognition of pseudo-instructions in the analysis options, if you require to see the raw adrp/add instructions. Aug 20, 2021 at 15:18

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