(Very) Basic reverse


The Linux strings builtin and the Windows sysinternals strings utility can be used to extract the printable characters contained in a file, and notably in non-text files.

By default, only the sequences that are at least 4 characters long are retrieved.

strings <BINARY>


The GNU objdump command line utility can be used to disassemble the assembler contents of the executable sections of a binary:

objdump -d <BINARY>


The radare2 suite is an open source reverse engineering framework consisting of multiples tools and features.

The framework supports multiples architectures (i386, x86-64, ARM, etc.), file formats (PE, PE+, ELF, Mach-O, etc.) and operating systems (Windows, GNU/Linux, OS X, etc.).

The rabin2 utility can be used to retrieve information and protection mechanisms of a binary:

rabin2 -I <BINARY>

radar2 <BINARY>
[0xXXX] > iL

The strings in the binary can be printed and searched into using izz:

[0xXXX] > iiz
[0xXXX] > iiz~password

The visual mode can entered by using the v command and quitted using the q command. In visual mode, the p command can be used to switch between display mode.


Binaries without debugging symbols

Debugging a binary compiled with out the debbugging symbols ("no debugging symbols found") is possible as GDB can directly handle assembly code.

GDB uses By default the AT&T assembly syntax. The following command can be used to switch to the Intel syntax:

set disassembly-flavor intel

To setup a breakpoint, the binary entry point can be retrieved using the GDB info command:

(gdb) info file
Entry point: 0xXXXXXX


The nexti (shortcut ni) and the stepi (shortcut si) commands are the assembly counter part of the soure code next and step commands.

The examine (shortcut x) command can be used to display the assembly code after the breakpoint:

# N = number of assembly line to print
# $pc = GDB variable for the program counter register

x/<N>i $pc
x/5i $pc


OllyDbg is a GUI 32-bit assembler level analyzing debugger for Microsoft Windows.

The Search for -> All referenced strings functionality allows to retrieve all printable strings contained in the binary and their address location for breakpoint setting.


dnSpy is a GUI debugger and assembly editor which can be used to debug 32 or 64 bits .NET applications and edit assemblies in C# or Visual Basic.

The GUI interface can be launched using the dnSpy.exe or dnSpy-x86.exe programs.



Last updated