From the front lines: IBM RIB

"The IBM Reflexive User Interface Builder (RIB), a new technology available
from alphaWorks, is an application and toolkit for building and rendering
Java AWT/Swing and Eclipse SWT GUIs. RIB specifies a flexible and
easy-to-use XML markup language for describing Java GUIs and provides an
engine for creating them. You can use RIB to test and evaluate basic GUI
layout and functionality, or to create and render GUIs for an application."

http://www-106.ibm.com/developerworks/library-combined/j-rib/


7 comments
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It fails at the first step, it uses class names in the xml files, which will
prevent obfuscation (or make it very hard) of your application, which is a
must for desktop applications.

Tom

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Thomas Singer (MoTJ) wrote:

It fails at the first step, it uses class names in the xml files, which
will prevent obfuscation (or make it very hard) of your application,
which is a must for desktop applications.


Surely your obfuscation process could process the XML files replacing
the class names with the obfuscated names as part of the build process?

Ciao,
Gordon

--
Gordon Tyler (Software Developer)
Quest Software <http://java.quest.com/>
260 King Street East, Toronto, Ontario M5A 4L5, Canada
Voice: (416) 933-5046 | Fax: (416) 933-5001

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Surely your obfuscation process could process the XML files replacing
the class names with the obfuscated names as part of the build process?


And what obfuscator can do it? Do you would use any library, which would
change your build process so significantly? I don't.

Tom

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If I felt it added signifigant value, I would, which is always relative.

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Thomas Singer (MoTJ) wrote:

>> Surely your obfuscation process could process the XML files replacing
>> the class names with the obfuscated names as part of the build process?


And what obfuscator can do it? Do you would use any library, which would
change your build process so significantly? I don't.


I don't know if any obfuscators can do this. It's a fairly logical
feature for an obfuscator to have -- to be able to obfuscate text
references to class names correctly.

Ciao,
Gordon

--
Gordon Tyler (Software Developer)
Quest Software <http://java.quest.com/>
260 King Street East, Toronto, Ontario M5A 4L5, Canada
Voice: (416) 933-5046 | Fax: (416) 933-5001

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That's cool, but for desktop applicaions would be nice to have design time UI generator rather then runtime.
I been looking for UI generator for quite long time, one of the best one is UICompiler.
It generates a plain Java code that you can obfuscate.

It will be nice to have the code generator for XUL :)

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It fails at the first step, it uses class names in the xml files, which
will prevent obfuscation (or make it very hard) of your application,
which is a must for desktop applications.


You can always not obfuscate the class names themselves (for the GUI classes
referenced in the XML file). As long as the actual Java code (bytecode)
itself is still obfuscated you are still well protected from serious
hacking. Retroguard has pretty good options for leaving names unobfuscated
but still hiding the code and non-public entities.

We actually find it best to not obfuscate any public class/method names
simply to avoid reflection/Spring/XML problems. I guess it depends on how
paranoid you are but I doubt there's much use a hacker could get from your
public class hierarchy. And if they're that competant at hacking it is
pretty much irrelevant how much obfuscation you have done - they'll get at
the code regardless!

Cheers,

TicH


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