Fw: Obfuscated Code

a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com
Sun Aug 2 16:24:49 UTC 2020

Forgot to CC the mailing list. 
   ----- Forwarded message ----- From: "a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com" <a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com> To: "lxoliva at fsfla.org" <lxoliva at fsfla.org> Cc:  Sent: Sun, 2 Aug 2020 at 4:54 pm Subject: Re: Obfuscated Code  I am a beginner to reverse engineering, but I want to contribute by helping to make libre replacements for blobs instead of doing CTF challenges.
I have a laptop internal Wi-Fi (2.4GHz, and 5.0GHz) and Bluetooth card which doesn't work due to missing free firmware. Along with the AMD GPUs mentioned recently (I want to buy a RX590), I want to ask what is high-priority.
Seeing as I have the above mentioned hardware and missing Wi-Fi/Bluetooth firmware seems to be a very common issue, I think that may be a good starting point, even if the code is a loadable module or driver, rather than firmware in the source tree itself.
Please don't expect me to make much progress quickly; we very much need more people to help. 
  On Sun, 2 Aug 2020 at 4:07 pm, Alexandre Oliva<lxoliva at fsfla.org> wrote:   On Jul 24, 2020, "a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com" <a.reviewer1234 at yahoo.com> wrote:

> I believe in the past I have heard that linux-libre removes obfuscated
> code from mainline linux.

That was presumably in reference to disguising dumps of pieces of binary
firmware code as configuration data in arrays of bytes.  This was common
practice in Linux when we started.

It has been largely deprecated there, in favor of loadable firmware
files, later moved to a distribution outside the kernel Linux source
tree.  There are very few remaining examples.

Though this move helped reduce accidental infringement, it did nothing
to solve the actual software freedom problem: the non-Free firmware
programs still exist, and are most often still required by drivers.

The best way to solve that is to reverse-engineer those blobs, and
develop Free versions of them.  People who have the skills, the interest
and the availability to engage in such tasks have been very rare

Alexandre Oliva, happy hacker
Free Software Activist
GNU Toolchain Engineer
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