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Communications Microsoft Technology

Skype Protocol Has Been Reverse Engineered 231

An anonymous reader writes "One researcher has decided he wants to make Skype open source by reverse engineering the protocol the service uses. In fact, he claims to have already achieved that feat on a new skype-open-source blog. The source code has been posted for versions 1.x/3.x/4.x of Skype as well as details of the rc4 layer arithmetic encoding the service uses. While his intention may be to recreate Skype as an open source platform, it is doubtful he will get very far without facing an army of Microsoft lawyers. Skype is not an open platform, and Microsoft will want to keep it that way."
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Skype Protocol Has Been Reverse Engineered

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  • by commodore6502 ( 1981532 ) on Thursday June 02, 2011 @03:42PM (#36323974)

    And yet we have several programs that can read/write to Office files. It seems the same could be done with MS Skype - call it OpenSkype or LibreSkype.

    The only problem is the potential to be sued for theft-of-service (making calls w/o paying).

  • by Ash Vince ( 602485 ) * on Thursday June 02, 2011 @05:13PM (#36325126) Journal

    Now, given the reports of how slimy and secretive the Skype binary can be, I'd be happy to see an open implementation; but I suspect that the possibility won't rock the boat from MS' perspective...

    The strength of Skype is it's user base, that is why it was so expensive to MS. A messaging client is only as good as its user base. They bought skype for its users and market penetration and that it why it leaves everything else in it dust. If I could use a rival client to communicate with people on the skype network I would drop skype in a heartbeat, especially when I am using Linux as their Linux client it dire. Likewise the androids client. I will be very glad if this results in a rival client, ideally an open source one.

    I do think however that Microsoft will already be screaming at an army of lawyers to shut this guy up quickly. You are entirely wrong when you say this will not rock the boat from their perspective, and you will see this in hours or days rather than weeks.

  • Re:Suspect (Score:4, Interesting)

    by jonwil ( 467024 ) on Thursday June 02, 2011 @08:10PM (#36326712)

    Based on the fact that the code contains addresses in the names of some functions (mysub_SessionManager_CMD_RECV_Process_00788E80 for example) and based on the mentions of "Hexrays" in the source, this was most likely reverse engineered using IDA pro and the HexRays decompiler. (HexRays is a great tool, I use it myself for some things)

One can't proceed from the informal to the formal by formal means.