Category: Articles


The end of Windows Live Messenger

Microsoft has, for a while now, been planning to discontinue the Windows Live Messaging platform in favor of the their newly purchased property, Skype. The initial shut-off for Windows Live Messenger was “first quarter of 2013”, later revealed to be April 8th, to April 30th. Keep in mind, the servers behind WLM will continue to stay on for legacy purposes (the xbox 360 for instance, uses WLM).

On April 25th, I was no longer able to sign in. I was prompted instead, with an option to “upgrade” to Skype. Seeing as Skype has an inferior text messaging system, I refused.

So, I fired up OllyDbg. Low and behold, like many of their previous restrictions placed on the client, the forced update is implemented via something they refer to as ‘Policies’ (you may remember how, for a short time, you could not click on certain links – that was a policy in effect). [Continue Reading…]


Functions in dynamic memory

Recently, as an experiment I was curious about executing code in dynamic memory in a C/C++ program.

It’s doable, but you need to do a few things you may not think of; you cannot just insert the assembly into your variable, and call it like a function. [Continue Reading…]


The WoW Launcher’s ‘setRealmlist’

The other day, I had someone who was working on their own launcher ask me about the algorithm I use in order to change the realmlist in the launcher.

First, you need to keep in mind that blizzard has moved it around a bit.

  • 1.x – 2.x, it was located in the same folder as Wow.exe
  • 3.x – 5.0.4, it was moved into your locales Data folder
  • 5.0.4 made the realmlist file obsolete, and the values are now stored in [Continue Reading…]

Adjust date/time in Windows 8

Recently, I upgraded to Windows 8.

I’ve found the migration to be fairly painless from Windows 7, aside from having to change a few habits (like you do when you upgrade any version of windows).

However, the other day I ran across a weird error, “You are attempting to open a file of the type ‘System file’ (.cpl)”. [Continue Reading…]


Under the Hood: World of Warcraft – Logging In

Welcome to the first of many planned ‘Under the Hood’ articles. This article series will take you inside a program and explain how things work – and sometimes how to expand on them to add functionality to their existing code base.

This time, we’ll be looking at World of Warcraft version 2.4.3 (Which is far from the newest version, for obvious reasons). If you’re familiar with the game, you’re no doubt aware that it’s filled with playable elves, ogres, trolls, and even punt-able gnomes. What you may not know is what goes on behind the scenes during the process of logging on, selecting a realm to play on, creating a character, and finally logging on to that character to play the game.

World of Warcraft's Logon Screen [Continue Reading…]