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Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 14:55 Go to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
Created tools and utilities to help the Stars! community
Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
Are there any plans to protect the m-file-download with a per-player password, possibly using the same login information as for these forums?

As an added feature, it would be nice if I (as a player, or game host) could authorise some other player to download my files (EG: for replacements, team play, "omniscient" races, etc).

Motivation for this question is 3-fold:

* the recent "What to do?" poll.
* there is a whole lot of meta-information that can be gleaned from M files, starting from something as simple as the file size.
* without going into details at this time[1], I am able to get a lot of very specific information out of M files[2]; I want to be able to release some of this work "into the wild" at some point in the future, without irrepairably damaging the stars! we all enjoy.


Greetings to all Smile

-- Michael `Wumpus' Zinn
This space reserved for future development.


[1] The vagueness is intentional. If you (hi #stars! denizens) already know more, I'd ask you to let me do the announcing when I feel the time is right.
[2] Don't worry, I am not now playing[3] in any stars! games at the moment, nor will I be unless and until a method to protect access to the M files is provided.
[3] I'm observing 3 and "universe building" for 2 more; 2 of the observed games I'm keeping what I gather completely to myself, and the other I'm working with various teams and the host-approval on some "approved" player aids.

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Re: Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 16:39 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kotk

 
Commander

Messages: 1227
Registered: May 2003
If you have cracked the stars crypto algorithm and want to develop some tool based on file contents then... Please ask the game password in that tool too. Nod

Otherwise such tool will open whole new era of cheating. Confused

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Re: Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 17:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
Created tools and utilities to help the Stars! community
Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
The crypto question is neither here nor there; if/when I release anything, it will be open source, so even if I could ask for the password, anyone could just take the code and remove the password check.

Anyway, I myself want to play some PBEM (or, more correctly I suppose, "PBAH" - Play By AutoHost) again some day Razz

BUT, if Ron says no such protected-file-download is ever going to happend, then my code just disappears into the dusty archive of might-have-been software in my backups. It wouldn't be the first ,p



Michael "Wumpus" Zinn
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Re: Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 17:27 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
Created tools and utilities to help the Stars! community
Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
Incidentally, Ron, if/when you see this - I tried emailing you rather more detailed info, but never got a reply - possibly because my reply-to address at the time seemed to randomly drop mail once in a while.
So sorry if this seems like I'm digging up a dead horse that you may already have responded to privately Sad



Michael "Wumpus" Zinn
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Re: Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 19:13 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Kotk

 
Commander

Messages: 1227
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wumpus wrote on Sat, 25 September 2004 00:23

Anyway, I myself want to play some PBEM (or, more correctly I suppose, "PBAH" - Play By AutoHost) again some day Razz


Any lock is for animals.

Why you cant play? Is it really so hard not to look into others files? Shocked You can always cheat by modding your own x files and so there is no difference? Confused

Join them freestars team, make it ready quicker... and then your problem is also solved. Wink

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Re: Password protected downloads? Fri, 24 September 2004 23:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
overworked is currently offline overworked

 
Lt. Junior Grade

Messages: 403
Registered: November 2002
Location: Pittsburgh, PA

Kotk wrote on Fri, 24 September 2004 19:13



Why you cant play? Is it really so hard not to look into others files? Shocked You can always cheat by modding your own x files and so there is no difference? Confused




I doubt Wumpus is tempted to cheat at all.

However, given knowledge that he simply has the *ability* to look at such things would likely generate charges of abuse if he were to play and show any degree of success. He is simply attempting to avoid that issue even raising its ugly head in the first place and placing the community ahead of himself in this regard.

- OWK

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Re: Password protected downloads? Sat, 25 September 2004 06:00 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
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Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
OWK's point is part of the problem, but aside from that, I think I'm too curious for my own good anyway ,-)

Beyond that: Stars! does "some" sanity checking of the X file orders... how much? I have no idea...

*Writing* information requires a lot (lot) more knowledge than reading it - more knowledge than I currently have (now) in many cases. And again: /Meta/ information, eg, something as simple as the file size, can tell you a lot.

-- Michael `Wumpus' Zinn
The Wumpus-hunters keep shooting my automatic signature instead of me Razz



Michael "Wumpus" Zinn
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Re: Password protected downloads? Sun, 26 September 2004 14:53 Go to previous messageGo to next message
Ron is currently offline Ron

 
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Stars! AutoHost Administrator

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Yes, but don't have time to at the moment, too much going on, moving SAH, moving house, etc... sorry, will reply more later.


Ron Miller
Stars! AutoHost

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Re: Password protected downloads? Tue, 28 September 2004 16:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
Created tools and utilities to help the Stars! community
Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
If I can make myself useful there, I'm more than willing to Smile

From a technical point of view, I should be "capable" on all fronts (done a lot of monkeying around with web stuff, including security issues, in php and perl, both at work and (as still now) as a hobby).

Time could be an issue, but if there's anything I might be able to do and I'll let you know whether I feel I'm up to it, and if so, when Smile

--
Michael 'Wumpus' Zinn
This line intentionally left blank



Michael "Wumpus" Zinn
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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 07:36 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PricklyPea is currently offline PricklyPea

 
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Messages: 534
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The original post dated back to Setpember last year. SAH has now implemented password protection. Has there been a leaked EXE made available?

I haven't found anything either here or on USENET.

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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 07:44 Go to previous messageGo to next message
donjon is currently offline donjon

 
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This has really been an issue for a long time, Wumpus has been aware of it for at least a year.

Recently, a howto was posted on a russian site which changes the exe so any password with the exception of the right one allows a person to load the m-file.

regards,
donjon

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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 10:11 Go to previous messageGo to next message
vonKreedon is currently offline vonKreedon

 
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Messages: 610
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So now the option for alliances that are sharing information via .M files is that the allies have to mail each other the files, rather than sharing the file passwords, unless they want the allies to be able to submit turns. Also, what about the situation where allies are sharing information via .M files and one of the allies stops playing?

I guess my request is for a separate download password that could be shared without making it possible for allies to then upload turns.

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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 10:22 Go to previous messageGo to next message
mazda is currently offline mazda

 
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vonKreedon wrote on Wed, 02 March 2005 15:11

Also, what about the situation where allies are sharing information via .M files and one of the allies stops playing?

A dropped player should have their upload password changed to prevent the allies either uploading or downloading files, nevermind an extra password to allow them to keep downloading the M files.

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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 11:04 Go to previous messageGo to next message
PricklyPea is currently offline PricklyPea

 
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PricklyPear wrote on Wed, 02 March 2005 07:36

The original post dated back to Setpember last year. SAH has now implemented password protection. Has there been a leaked EXE made available?

I haven't found anything either here or on USENET.


Do you have an URL for this site? I don't think I have seen it.

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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 14:41 Go to previous messageGo to next message
wumpus

 
Master Chief Petty Officer
Stars! V.I.P
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Past Weekly Puzzle Master

Messages: 114
Registered: September 2004
I have nothing to do with the hacked exe that I've heard about all of 5 minutes ago on #stars!.

Incidentally, there are at least 2 other people / groups of people who have credibly claimed to know how to read M files, and if there's 3 of us, then there's almost certainly more - in any case, I strongly doubt that either of the others I know about has anything to do with the hacked exe. So this new Autohost feature can only be a Good Thing IMO Smile

As to my work... *shrug* work coupled with doubts about progress actually making sense in the absence of better AH security have stalled many fronts, but there was some progress since the first post (Hi RingsM players Smile), and with the doubts about AH at least partially mollified, I have more motivation to get to work on the next part-project I consider sensible: An X file plausability checker. Don't hold your breath though, all but the most trivial of things for that seem to be at least moderately Hard Neutral



Michael "Wumpus" Zinn
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Re: Password protected downloads? Wed, 02 March 2005 21:23 Go to previous messageGo to next message
icebird is currently offline icebird

 
Chief Warrant Officer 3

Messages: 178
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Location: In LaLa land...
I've searched myself, but I can't find the site it's on. If it is in russian, that might be the problem. Could someone post a link, or PM it to me?

(insert disclaimer about only wanting to look in on innocent AIs)

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Re: Password protected downloads? Thu, 03 March 2005 01:31 Go to previous messageGo to next message
gible

 
Commander

Messages: 1343
Registered: November 2002
Location: Wellington, New Zealand

vonKreedon wrote on Thu, 03 March 2005 04:11

So now the option for alliances that are sharing information via .M files is that the allies have to mail each other the files, rather than sharing the file passwords, unless they want the allies to be able to submit turns. Also, what about the situation where allies are sharing information via .M files and one of the allies stops playing?



For team games the situation is not quite so grim, as autohost supports the sending of turn files to multiple email addresses.(assuming you get your turn file via email...sorry Gakl) I use this myself when hosting. With an accomodating host this could also be made to work for "normal game" alliances.

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Topic split (Re: Password protected downloads?) Sat, 05 March 2005 07:18 Go to previous message
Micha

 

Messages: 2341
Registered: November 2002
Location: Belgium GMT +1
I've split off the posts about "Looking into AI turns". Those are now in the Bar, please continue there,

mch,
mod.a.w.

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