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Alex S.

Id STUFF / TestDrive Tool

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Posted (edited)

Hi all,

 

After a bit of no releases, I've got another one. This time, I need to make sure the tool I propose to release is OK with the moderators/admins/staff before doing anything.

 

What I have created is a tool that reliably unlocks the encrypted MJ3 games in Id STUFF (found on many shareware CDs). Given this tool is intended for people who legitimately own the game they're unlocking, and was designed only for archival posterity, I see nothing immoral about using it so long as the user is licensed to have the game they unlock. BUT, because it's the Internet, and anyone can say "Oh, yea, I paid for that" then unlock a free game, I'm apprehensive about releasing such a tool without the express "OK" from the moderators.

 

I have both Windows and Mac OS binaries. 

 

 

Here's a screenshot of it running, having just provided an unlock code:

 

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 12.21.41.png

 

Are the Mods/Staff OK with me releasing this, or should I keep it to myself? I don't want to break any rules unknowingly. 

 

Thanks :)

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On 8/17/2022 at 12:22 PM, Alex S. said:

encrypted MJ3 games in Id STUFF (found on many shareware CDs

What is this exactly? And why does it require an unlocking tool? Fill me in.

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8 minutes ago, Nevander said:

What is this exactly? And why does it require an unlocking tool? Fill me in.

On many of Id's game install CDs there was an application called "Id STUFF". This program ran under Windows 3.1 and up. Id STUFF contained a storefront where there'd be encrypted copies of most of their best games on the disc. The idea was, the user would run the program, pick a game they wanted then call Id Software. The user would read a challenge code from the program off the screen to the call center agent, then pay for the game. The call center agent in turn would read back a response code that the user would type in to the Id STUFF program on their computer. The encrypted game would be copied in its unencrypted form to the user's hard disk where they could carry out the installation.

 

Because Id STUFF is entirely obsolete as is the call center that handled the orders, I wrote a program that would unlock games in the way the human reps did back in the 90s. You run Id STUFF on your computer (probably best in DOSBox with Windows 3.1 installed), feed my program the challenge code, and it will provide you the response code to unlock your chosen game.

 

I hope the explanation helps clarify what this does and how it came to be.

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4 minutes ago, Alex S. said:

On many of Id's game install CDs there was an application called "Id STUFF". This program ran under Windows 3.1 and up. Id STUFF contained a storefront where there'd be encrypted copies of most of their best games on the disc. The idea was, the user would run the program, pick a game they wanted then call Id Software. The user would read a challenge code from the program off the screen to the call center agent, then pay for the game. The call center agent in turn would read back a response code that the user would type in to the Id STUFF program on their computer. The encrypted game would be copied in its unencrypted form to the user's hard disk where they could carry out the installation.

 

Because Id STUFF is entirely obsolete as is the call center that handled the orders, I wrote a program that would unlock games in the way the human reps did back in the 90s. You run Id STUFF on your computer (probably best in DOSBox with Windows 3.1 installed), feed my program the challenge code, and it will provide you the response code to unlock your chosen game.

 

I hope the explanation helps clarify what this does and how it came to be.

Ohh this will be useful, because i have Quake and Heretic CD's.

 

But this program can thus unlock the games on there? Especially Quake, then it means there is a Doom 1 and Doom 2 for zilch on there.

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Posted (edited)
28 minutes ago, Redneckerz said:

Ohh this will be useful, because i have Quake and Heretic CD's.

 

But this program can thus unlock the games on there? Especially Quake, then it means there is a Doom 1 and Doom 2 for zilch on there.

 

The tool I made can unlock the following titles from various Id Software discs:

 

Doom II
The Ultimate Doom for Windows 95
Master Levels
HEXEN
Heretic
Wolfenstein 3d
Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders
HEXEN: Deathkings of the Dark Citadel
HEXEN 1.1
Doom II for Windows 95
Doom Special Edition - The Ultimate Doom
Final Doom for DOS
Final Doom for Windows 95
Quake 1.01

 

 

These are the ones I was able to dig up hashes for. Should be enough, right? lol

Edited by Alex S.

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34 minutes ago, Alex S. said:

 

The tool I made can unlock the following titles from various Id Software discs:

 

Doom II
The Ultimate Doom for Windows 95
Master Levels
HEXEN
Heretic
Wolfenstein 3d
Heretic: Shadow of the Serpent Riders
HEXEN: Deathkings of the Dark Citadel
HEXEN 1.1
Doom II for Windows 95
Doom Special Edition - The Ultimate Doom
Final Doom for DOS
Final Doom for Windows 95
Quake 1.01

 

 

These are the ones I was able to dig up hashes for. Should be enough, right? lol

I mean its epic and all, but with this unlock tool, you essentially have free copies of Doom and Doom II and all the others.

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5 minutes ago, Redneckerz said:

I mean its epic and all, but with this unlock tool, you essentially have free copies of Doom and Doom II and all the others.

I'm pretty sure there are far, far easier ways to get illicit free versions of old Id games nowadays. And also non-illicit ways that are cheap and far quicker and easier than jumping through hoops with old shareware CDs.

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Posted (edited)

Right, I'm pretty sure that at this point, anyone with old physical copies sitting around probably already owns the games in one way or another. And what would be the point of downloading an image of the original discs, and then going to the trouble of using this utility to get a free copy? Pirates are gonna pirate, and this seems like the most inconvenient way to do it.

 

I'll have to pop in one of my discs and try it out. It sounds like a neat tool though, and I had completely forgotten about that idstuff folder.

 

It did bring back memories of my wee self trying to figure out how to access the content in that folder. Being 10 or so, and not having internet access and barely any computer experience, I didn't get far. But I knew it was there.

 

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22 minutes ago, Kinsie said:

I'm pretty sure there are far, far easier ways to get illicit free versions of old Id games nowadays. And also non-illicit ways that are cheap and far quicker and easier than jumping through hoops with old shareware CDs.

True on all the above points. But, this was fun to create. Plus I, like basically everyone on here, have paid for many copies of all these games anyway so it's just fun to see those old PKZip archives extract in DOS haha

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Just now, Alex S. said:

True on all the above points. But, this was fun to create. Plus I, like basically everyone on here, have paid for many copies of all these games anyway so it's just fun to see those old PKZip archives extract in DOS haha

Yeah it sounds really neat, so kudos to you! I'll have to try it out. Assuming I can still find my shareware of Heretic. 

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Posted (edited)
10 minutes ago, Jello said:

Yeah it sounds really neat, so kudos to you! I'll have to try it out. Assuming I can still find my shareware of Heretic. 

Nice! The best trove of Id STUFF is the Quake shareware CD. It's got basically everything on there. There's a copy at https://archive.org/details/cdrom-quake-shareware if you need it.

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9 minutes ago, Alex S. said:

Nice! The best trove of Id STUFF is the Quake shareware CD. It's got basically everything on there. There's a copy at https://archive.org/details/cdrom-quake-shareware if you need it.

I had the Quake shareware disc, but I'm not sure where it is, if I even still have it. Out of curiosity I put my registered Quake in, but apparently it didn't have the idstuff folder on it.

 

I'm pretty sure it was the Quake shareware that I was poking around in years ago. Can you imagine dangling that kind of carrot in front of a kid?

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Posted (edited)
On 8/17/2022 at 12:22 PM, Alex S. said:

Hi all,

 

After a bit of no releases, I've got another one. This time, I need to make sure the tool I propose to release is OK with the moderators/admins/staff before doing anything.

 

What I have created is a tool that reliably unlocks the encrypted MJ3 games in Id STUFF (found on many shareware CDs). Given this tool is intended for people who legitimately own the game they're unlocking, and was designed only for archival posterity, I see nothing immoral about using it so long as the user is licensed to have the game they unlock. BUT, because it's the Internet, and anyone can say "Oh, yea, I paid for that" then unlock a free game, I'm apprehensive about releasing such a tool without the express "OK" from the moderators.

 

I have both Windows and Mac OS binaries. 

 

 

Here's a screenshot of it running, having just provided an unlock code:

 

Screen Shot 2022-08-17 at 12.21.41.png

 

Are the Mods/Staff OK with me releasing this, or should I keep it to myself? I don't want to break any rules unknowingly. 

 

Thanks :)

 

And as usual with technology, there's always a way around security measures.

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48 minutes ago, Kinsie said:

I'm pretty sure there are far, far easier ways to get illicit free versions of old Id games nowadays. And also non-illicit ways that are cheap and far quicker and easier than jumping through hoops with old shareware CDs.

Haha yes ofcourse, no concerns there.

Well, that means i have another copy of Doom and Doom 2 and Hexen/Heretic somewhere. Neat.

25 minutes ago, Alex S. said:

True on all the above points. But, this was fun to create. Plus I, like basically everyone on here, have paid for many copies of all these games anyway so it's just fun to see those old PKZip archives extract in DOS haha

I thank you for it. Because ill use it for my retro rig once it is set up :)

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10 minutes ago, Redneckerz said:

Haha yes ofcourse, no concerns there.

Well, that means i have another copy of Doom and Doom 2 and Hexen/Heretic somewhere. Neat.

I thank you for it. Because ill use it for my retro rig once it is set up :)

 

 

Hope you enjoy.

 

There's an HTML / JS version coming soon!

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15 minutes ago, Master O said:

 

And as usual with technology, there's always a way around security measures.

 

Especially when the software you're reverse-engineering stores unencrypted hashes in memory ;)

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1 minute ago, Alex S. said:

 

Especially when the software you're reverse-engineering stores unencrypted hashes in memory ;)

To be fair, we were talking the early 90s here. :P

 

I vaguely remember there being some other tool that did this, but it failed with decrypting one specific thing...

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2 minutes ago, Dark Pulse said:

To be fair, we were talking the early 90s here. :P

 

I vaguely remember there being some other tool that did this, but it failed with decrypting one specific thing...

 

Yeah, this release is a modern re-implementation of QCracker which is probably the older tool you're referring to. It was a DOS-only 16-bit command-line program that worked pretty well for the time and is still pretty cool today.

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Just now, Alex S. said:

 

Yeah, this release is a modern re-implementation of QCracker which is probably the older tool you're referring to. It was a DOS-only 16-bit command-line program that worked pretty well for the time and is still pretty cool today.

It has a online equivalent these days, haha. Which seems fairly similar to what you are doing?

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2 minutes ago, Redneckerz said:

It has a online equivalent these days, haha. Which seems fairly similar to what you are doing?

I've seen that as well. Their implementation is great - very simple and straightforward.

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Posted (edited)
1 hour ago, Alex S. said:

Yeah, this release is a modern re-implementation of QCracker which is probably the older tool you're referring to. It was a DOS-only 16-bit command-line program that worked pretty well for the time and is still pretty cool today.

Yep, just checked my Win98 VM and that was what was on there, lol.

 

I still had the Quake 1.01 SW CD on there and tried to get QCrack to unlock Doom II (which yes, I do legally own and I will happily prove it if need be), and that was the one QCrack (or at least the online QCrack) choked on.

 

Quote

Q97316412776

Valid checksum.

Game number:0, doom2, id Software: Doom II

Serial: B198320964

 

Curious as to why. Especially as your tool presents the exact same serial.

 

Every other game BESIDES Doom II on this disk unlocks fine.

 

e729d02962.png

 

For the record, the actual, runnable QCrack gives a different number for this Challenge - B198325790. That one IS accepted by id stuff.

 

12a5958b5d.png

 

Something is afoot both here, and with the online QCrack, with the codes generated for Doom II compared to the standalone QCrack executable.

Edited by Dark Pulse

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40 minutes ago, Dark Pulse said:

Yep, just checked my Win98 VM and that was what was on there, lol.

 

I still had the Quake 1.01 SW CD on there and tried to get QCrack to unlock Doom II (which yes, I do legally own and I will happily prove it if need be), and that was the one QCrack (or at least the online QCrack) choked on.

 

 

Curious as to why. Especially as your tool presents the exact same serial.

 

Every other game BESIDES Doom II on this disk unlocks fine.

 

e729d02962.png

 

For the record, the actual, runnable QCrack gives a different number for this Challenge - B198325790. That one IS accepted by id stuff.

 

12a5958b5d.png

 

Something is afoot both here, and with the online QCrack, with the codes generated for Doom II compared to the standalone QCrack executable.

 

 

Thanks for the feedback - I will work on it.

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Posted (edited)
18 minutes ago, Alex S. said:

Thanks for the feedback - I will work on it.

Well as I said, I don't think this is something you got wrong, per se, but the online QCracker implementation did. Yours is a port of that, so it'd contain the same error.

 

But somewhere, it's made a mistake that regular QCrack does not. And I've always been curious as to why, so a little bit of technical notes on where it screwed up would be hugely appreciated :)

 

EDIT: I looked through the blogposts on reversing QCrack, and this might help steer you in the right direction:

 

Quote

One problem with my reversing is I found an instance of an input challenge string, Q76820422412, that my implementation gives a different result than QCRACK. Some thoughts on how this might be: It could be bit operations, such as a shift left in a 16-bit word in the original is done in 32 or more bits in my implementation, and shift back to the right those bits aren’t cleared out as in the original, or perhaps a bit mask is off. Regarless, the nature of the key gen is that the results of this difference rarely propagates to the final output.

 

Edited by Dark Pulse

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