Questions tagged [windows]

Windows refers to the Microsoft Windows series of operating systems.

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53
votes
3answers
8k views

What is the purpose of 'mov edi, edi'?

I see this instruction in the beginning of several Windows programs. It's copying a register to itself, so basically, this acts as a nop. What's the purpose of this instruction?
45
votes
7answers
96k views

How to know in which language/technology program (.exe) is written?

How to understand if exe/dll is written in C++/.Net/Java or in any other language. I tried to use Dependency walker but not able to get required information.
31
votes
5answers
21k views

Open source GUI tool for decomposing a PDF

I've been looking for an open-source GUI tool to extract PDF's in an automated way on Windows systems. I've used Didier Steven's tools with great interest for a while, but cannot make sense of how to ...
22
votes
3answers
9k views

Can I statically link (not import) the Windows system DLLs?

I have compiled following C source code in VS2010 console project. #include <stdio.h> int main(int argc, char* argv[]){ printf("hello world\n"); return 0; } then I used /MT option for ...
21
votes
1answer
3k views

Windows Wiki : Books and Tutorials [closed]

This post is for collecting all the best books and tutorials that exist dealing with windows specific reverse engineering techniques and concepts. The content will be added to the Windows wiki. Any ...
20
votes
2answers
10k views

How to reverse engineer simple usb device [windows -> linux]

I'd like to reverse engineer my usb beer-can refrigurator, which does connect via USB on windows and via simple GUI tray-tool can set/query temperature. I was thinking about running virtualboxed ...
19
votes
1answer
8k views

What's 'fs:[0]' doing and how can I execute it step by step?

In a 32 bits Windows binary, I see this code: push next push fs:[0] mov fs:[0], esp int3 ... next: I see that something happens on the int3 (an error), but I don't understand why,...
18
votes
1answer
27k views

Get the function prototypes from an unknown .dll

I have an unknown .dll from another program which I want to work with. With DLL Export Viewer I was able to find the exported functions. But to call them I need the information about the parameters ...
17
votes
4answers
3k views

How can you reliably unpack a Windows driver manually?

When you unpack manually a Windows user-mode executable, you can easily break at its EntryPoint (or TLS), then trace until you reach the original EntryPoint. However that's not possible with a packed ...
17
votes
4answers
4k views

Server-side Query interception with MS SQL Server

I'm researching into intercepting queries that arrive at the SQL Server 2008 process. SQLOS architecture is divided in the following system DLLs: sqlmin.dll: Storage, replication, security features,...
16
votes
8answers
4k views

Determining if a file is managed code or not

How can I quickly tell if a EXE or DLL I have is managed code or not? I spent some time recently trying to disassemble a file and then later learned through some traces in the code that I could have ...
16
votes
5answers
6k views

Is there any simple open source Windows packer?

There are great questions here about different types of packers and that is very interesting to me. I would like to try my hand at reverse engineering one. Since I am very new to this, I would like ...
16
votes
4answers
5k views

Check if exe is 64-bit

How to check if Windows executable is 64-bit reading only its binary. Without executing it and not using any tools like the SDK tool dumpbin.exe with the /headers option.
16
votes
3answers
7k views

Are there any tools or scripts for identifying compression algorithms in executables?

I know there are tools for identifying common ciphers and hash algorithms in code, but are there any similar scripts / tools / plugins for common compression algorithms such as gzip, deflate, etc? ...
15
votes
1answer
3k views

COM interface methods

I'm reversing malware and it uses COM, which I evidently don't know. My question is how to find out what method is called using ppv (and objectstublessclient?) push offset ppv ; Address of ...
14
votes
7answers
10k views

How to see what data is being transmitted when an application calls home?

Always wondered how it would be possible to see what data is being transmitted back and forth with an application that calls home. Let's say we emulate the server via host file redirect. Would it be ...
14
votes
2answers
25k views

How can I set a breakpoint for a button click?

I am trying to find what a button does, so I want to set a breakpoint to catch button click event. Is that possible? Any tools or tricks to assist in this?
14
votes
2answers
349 views

Is there a good reference for COM object signatures?

When doing RE on some Microsoft binaries I run across COM object references all the time. Is there a good central place to translate some of the GUID's that I find to some sort of object type without ...
13
votes
4answers
3k views

Debugging malware that will only run as a service

I'm trying to debug a malware sample that installs to a system as service and then will only start if it starts as a service. Other functions are still available without the service start, like ...
13
votes
4answers
4k views

INT 2D Anti-Forensic Method

Inclusion of an INT 2D instruction appears to be a fairly common anti-debugging tactic used by Windows malware authors. From what I understand, it causes a process to act differently when a debugger ...
13
votes
3answers
16k views

Difference between DllMain and DllEntryPoint

I have a piece a malware I was share with. (I do this for fun, anyways) Is a DLL according to the IMAGE_FILE_HEADER->Characteristics. I was trying to do some dynamic analysis on it. I have done the ...
12
votes
3answers
1k views

How to prevent use of Resource editors

There are variety of tools that allow editing the resources of Windows executables. These tools allow a very easy interface for changing the programs look and feel. Replacing icons, text, menus can be ...
12
votes
2answers
3k views

What kind of code would produce this assemby with loads of jump statements?

00EE16CC . E9 DFBB0000 JMP BinFile.00EED2B0 00EE16D1 . E9 64AF0000 JMP <JMP.&MSVCP140D.?pptr@?$basic_streambuf@DU?$char_traits@D@std@@@std@> 00EE16D6 . E9 15DB0000 JMP BinFile....
12
votes
5answers
24k views

Are there any OllyDbg anti-debug/anti-anti-debug plugins what work with Windows 7 / NT 6.x?

Title says it all. I'm trying to RE a video game which is packed with Themida and the second I attach OllyDbg it crashes. When on XP, I can use StrongOD and PhantOm but neither of these work properly ...
12
votes
3answers
616 views

Trying to understand this construct in Dbgv.sys driver for DbgView tool

I'm trying to reverse the Dbgv.sys (x86 kernel driver) for the DbgView tool. It has this sub_10D4A function that is called almost at the beginning of the driver's DriverEntry function. It goes as such:...
11
votes
2answers
7k views

windows - Why is the imagebase default 0x400000?

Having stumbled upon this question (and answer): https://stackoverflow.com/questions/2170843/va-virtual-adress-rva-relative-virtual-address on my quest for understanding Windows' PE format, I'm ...
11
votes
2answers
3k views

How do the internals of a Windows update security patch work?

Wasn't sure where to ask this on stack exchange, so vote to close if you think it is in the wrong place. I am analyzing a Windows security patch. Having never examined a windows security patch, and ...
10
votes
1answer
2k views

What are the Vectored Continue Handlers

Practically everyone knows what Vectored Exception Handlers are, but I couldn't find a lot of information about the similar "Vectored Continue Handlers" and related functions I encountered today, such ...
10
votes
2answers
2k views

Debugging EXE with TLS

How do I debug an executable that uses TLS callbacks? It's my understanding that these run before my debugger will attach.
10
votes
1answer
332 views

Thread-Switching with PyDbg

I'm having trouble switching from debugging one thread to another in pydbg. I don't have much experience with multithreading, so I'm hoping that I'm just missing something obvious. Basically, I want ...
10
votes
1answer
1k views

Kernel level Dynamic Binary Instrumentation

Is there anything like PIN or DynamoRIO to instrument at Kernel level? The platforms I'm more interested on are Windows and OSX.
9
votes
5answers
15k views

Freely available resource hacking applications

I am using Resource Hacker as a tool to extract out resources like icon, images, etc. from .dll or .exe file. In addition, I am using it to crack some small Windows application. However, it does not ...
9
votes
3answers
788 views

Is there any way to get my own image base without calling any WinAPI functions, such as GetModuleHandle?

Is there any way to get the image base of an .exe without calling WinAPI functions (i.e. imported functions) so that it can't be easily viewed in a disassembler/debugger? I've been thinking of ...
9
votes
2answers
3k views

Where is ntdll.dll?

I am trying to get the base address of ntdll.dll over the PEB. So, what I did was to dump the PEB (d fs:[30]). Then, I tried to get to PEB_LDR_DATA over the offset 0xC. Over the offset 0x1C of ...
9
votes
1answer
4k views

Dll injection and GetProcAddress with the winapi

So i just read a little bit about how one would go about for injecting a dll into a running program on Wikipedia (the CreateRemoteThread idea). I followed the steps described and eventually got it ...
8
votes
1answer
3k views

How to investigate Windows 32/64bit (WOW64) transition

There is surprisingly little information about Windows WOW64 mechanism. I'm trying to investigate it. So when we have system call in 32-land, it calls an address that is stored in FS, which leads us ...
8
votes
3answers
7k views

Reverse Engineering of data structures in games

I am currently participating in a reverse code engineering seminar for my studies in informatics: games engineering and was assigned the topic about "Identifying data structures". After an extensive ...
8
votes
2answers
1k views

Is there an easy way to detect if the SSDT has been patched from a memory dump?

The SSDT is a dispatch table inside the Windows NT kernel, and it is used for handling calls to various internal kernel APIs. Often malware will change addresses in the SSDT in order to hook certain ...
8
votes
2answers
293 views

What changes in MS Windows system libraries after restart?

I'm running a 64-bit MS Windows 7 with all updates installed. About 1 or 2 weeks ago I've noticed that whenever I restart the OS, the virtual memory pages (of whatever process), corresponding to ...
8
votes
2answers
2k views

Obfuscating Windows Executables

GCC allows you to write optimization plugins that can be used to obfuscate your compiled executable, but this wasn't ported to mingw. LLVM allows something similar but barfs when including Windows.h. ...
8
votes
3answers
233 views

How to manage/revert to specific OS versions for effective patch diffing?

For the purpose of learning about the complexities involved in writing PoC's (and gaining experience in) one could do patch diffing and have real world vulnerable examples to practice on. For now ...
8
votes
1answer
994 views

How does the Windows Native API communicate with the kernel?

The windows Native API (Ntdll.dll) is a user-mode library. However, it is the final user-mode library that interfaces with the kernel. How does it actually interface with the kernel and bridge the gap ...
8
votes
3answers
739 views

What methodology can be used to change code flow atomically during program execution?

I have been reading a lot about the different techniques for Windows API hooking (a technique I'm particularly fascinated by and fond of), and it seems a major problem in implementing a realiable ...
7
votes
3answers
3k views

Reverse engineering a VC++ video game

So I know x86 machine language and C++/C language. In the last weeks I've dedicated to learn Windows internals and especially PE format. My target is retrieving the Tomb Raider The Angel of Darkness ...
7
votes
3answers
2k views

How to force the loading of a DLL in Windows XP at a particular address

I need to run a debugger on an application and analyze its startup, however the main DLL gets loaded at different addresses every time, which makes my job much harder. How can I disable ASLR ...
7
votes
3answers
702 views

Working with DOS .COM files

What can I do to reverse engineer a DOS .COM file? As far as debugging goes, I've looked DEBUG and DEBUGX from the creators of FreeDOS, as well as the default DEBUG command that comes with Windows. ...
7
votes
1answer
5k views

How does services.exe trigger the start of a service?

I'm trying to work out the internals of how a Windows process starts and maintains communication with services.exe. This is on Windows 8 x64, but if you have tips for Windows 7 that is fine too. So ...
7
votes
1answer
1k views

How can I find the Thread Local Storage (TLS) of a Windows Process Thread?

The Thread Local Storage (TLS) contains static or global values for a thread. Those values can be very important to find reliable references to memory structures when the memory locations are not ...
7
votes
2answers
1k views

How to Attach debugger or start analysis of process that is debugging itself?

I need and advice on how to start an analysis, connect with debugger to a process that is already debugging itself. Are there any tools/plugins/techniques that might help during the analysis? UPDATE ...
7
votes
1answer
439 views

WHY and WHEN do we need SEH for buffer overflowing

In our course in university, we recently moved on from standard buffer-overflows to SEH based ones. My exploit is already ready and working thanks to some nice tutorials, although I am still not sure ...