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"Unextract" Converted Batch Files Answered

Have you ever wondered how to do something in batch that someone has already done and wrapped it nicely in a little .exe file? Some people like to keep their batch programming secrets to themselves, and don't want to share, so then convert their batch file to .exe. But you can't discover their secrets if they have converted it to .exe, because all you will find is gibberish.

Before I will tell you how to "unextract" an .exe, you must now how ".bat to .exe" programs work. What they basically do is "wrap" a batch file with an executable; think about a Christmas present. Pretend the gift inside is the secrets of the batch file, and the wrapping on the outside is like the executable, which prevents you from "seeing" the secrets inside. But this is no ordinary present, the wrapping on the outside can not be torn or opened, you must press a button in order to to "unwrap" it. But when it "unwraps", it shows you what it is, but hiding the secrets.

If you couldn't fully understand that, here is what actually happens. Try to compare the two.
Batch files in executable form cannot be viewed as the batch language. If you open it in notepad, you will get a whole bunch of symbols. In the philosophy above, pressing the "button" is the same as opening the file as an executable. It opens just like a batch file, but if you try to edit it, you won't be able to read it. What the executable does, is temporarily extracts the batch file within it, to a temp folder.

Now to the "how to" part. Here is where that "temp" (temporary) folder is:
%userprofile%\Local Settings\Temp
Now all you have to do is copy and paste that into a windows explorer address bar. You will now be in a temp folder where the batch file will be dumped. Now you have to run the .exe file. But now you do have to get your hands dirty (virtually!). Search in each folder till you find a batch file, most commonly called batchfile.bat. Simply right click, press edit, and your in!

So that's how to "unextract" a converted batch file! (note: I didn't make it an instructible because, well, no one likes a one step instructable!)

Good Luck!

11 Replies

user
El Mano (author)2009-12-11

Where'd you fing the batch converter?

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mikroskeem (author)El Mano2012-04-29

you maybe find at there some useless files (like eduke32.exe and dosbox.exe) you maybe find at there some useable stuff (like drivers(installers!))

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user
fwjs28 (author)2008-12-14

cool....i always wondered how to "unextract" a .exe....

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user
mikroskeem (author)fwjs282012-04-29

you maybe find at there some useless files (like eduke32.exe and dosbox.exe) you maybe find at there some useable stuff (like drivers(installers!))

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user
lemonie (author)fwjs282009-12-12

It only works on .bat that have been converted to .exe with Bat to Exe converter.

L

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user
RedFlash (author)2010-04-25

You could just open 7zip and right click on the exe and hit Open inside.

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user
RedFlash (author)RedFlash2010-04-25

oops, just tried it. comes up with three files that contain absolutely nothing

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user
lemonie (author)2009-12-12

Are you talking about getting back to the original .bat you converted to .exe in the first place?

L

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user
lemonie (author)Arbitror2009-12-12

That's interesting. The builder must pack it into some kind of self-extracting archive rather than actually compile the commands into executable code?

L

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gonturan (author)2009-03-25

Hmmm, this doesn't seem to work on PiFast43. Oh, an easier way to sort is to arrange the files by date and then look in the most recently modified one.

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