A quick review of Mac OS X and iOS Internals – To the Apple’s Core

The question that most people want to be answered is if this is the book to replace the venerable Mac OS X Internals by Amit Singh. In my opinion it’s complementary with some good updates and interesting tips. I wasn’t expecting to buy this book so soon due to some Twitter comments and to printing issues, with at least one chapter missing and replaced with another from a ASP.net book. A project I’m working at antecipated my waiting. [Read More]

My first Hackintosh

I really like my non-unibody Macbook Pro (awesome keyboard!) but its 3GB ram limit makes it almost impossible to work with virtual machines, Mac OS VMs in particular. I don’t have a need for another laptop and possibilities were between buying a Mac Pro or build my own Hackintosh. Against the Hackintosh is the fact that my patience for small problems doesn’t exist anymore. I just want something that works and does what I need – time is money. [Read More]

How to compile GDB for iOS!

One obstacle that I faced long time ago and came again into spotlight is how to recompile GDB for iOS. It is not useful to fix the ARM disassembler and then not be able to compile. As far as I know there isn’t any documentation available or an easy method to accomplish this – Saurik’s build environment is not public (?) and Apple sources do not compile directly. Darwinbuild project works great for OS X but it’s a question mark for iOS. [Read More]

How to create IDA C/C++ plugins with Xcode

This is just a simple post about using Xcode to create IDA C/C++ plugins. Nothing fancy here. For great references about IDA SDK plugin writing check out The IDA Pro Book by Chris Eagle and binarypool.com tutorial. Xcode 3.2.6 is the reference version used. The resulting project loads and compiles without any issues into Xcode 4. Why not doing this in 4? Human brain is misterious (3.x still loads by default on my system). [Read More]

Apple Sandbox Guide v1.0

Here it is a version I consider good enough to come out of draft status. I have added more information – one thing I was especially interested was to match the available operations in the SBPL syntax with the system/kernel functions that they control. This helps to better understand what is the impact of each operation. Appendix B features the lazy IDC script I used to extract this information from the sandbox kernel module (then I had to match with XNU kernel sources). [Read More]

Apple’s Sandbox Guide v0.1 – early draft release

After quite a few hours typing and testing stuff, here it is a very early draft of my attempt to document Apple’s sandbox implementation. The most difficult part in writing technical documentation or business plans is to get the first draft more or less ready. It’s even worse when there’s not much information about the subject. But here it is something with already quite some significant content. In this draft I don’t like the writing style – it’s still very confuse and boring. [Read More]

How to remove iPad/iPhone/iPod Touch encrypted backups password if you forgot it

These last days I must be set on a Apple devices destruction mode. First I lost access to my MacBook while trying to increase its physical security – I configured it to boot from network and I lost all access to boot sequence commands. I think my model has an EFI bug because the security-mode set to full doesn’t ask for a password when I start/restart my laptop, only asks for password if I want to boot from other devices. [Read More]

Cracking a Mac OS X Screensaver

There are days I “hate” my obsessive and curious mind! The day I was checking Apple Just added downloads feed and found this nice screensaver is one of those. 3D Desktop Aquarium Screensaver (available at http://www.uselesscreations.com) grabbed my attention because it looks nice and I love fishes. As usual, I started poking around and decided I had to crack it because I never did a screensaver before. The result is another tutorial 😄. [Read More]

How to compile GDB and other Apple open source packages in Mac OS X

I wanted to recompile GDB so I can modify its source and add some custom patches to enhance its output… Easier said than done! There’s not much information around about this and my first attempt was by downloading GDB source package from Apple and trying to compile it. Didn’t compile out of the box so I had to fix here and there and finally it compiled, but then it didn’t work. [Read More]

Mailing list and IRC channel

I forgot to mention this previously but there is a mailing list available at http://0x90.org/mailman/listinfo/xso and an IRC channel at irc.freenode.net, #osxre.

It’s still a small community but more people are showing up and IRC is always a good communication tool.

I’m not administrator of both, but YOU are invited to join 😄.