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Author Topic: Hiding files/folders, but still accessible?
tweety
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 09:44      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Hi,
I have a problem/question. Is it possible to hide a folder on a CD, yet still have the files accessible via a browser? What I am looking to do is to create a CD with a website on it, but I want to be able to keep the image files (and possibly the HTML pages) accessible for viewing through a browser, but inaccessible for copying, moving, saving, or viewing through the directory structure (Explorer, Finder). Is this even possible, outside of creating some sort of executable wrapper? If not, can I create an executable wrapper for a website? If yes, what tools do I need to accomplish the task?

Hmm...looks like more than one question. At least I stuck to the one problem. Hopefully, it is only one problem.

Any help is greatly appreciated as this has been driving me batty for days.

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ooby
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 10:22      Profile for ooby     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Well, you can't write once the CD is finalized.

The easy way is just to make all of the files hidden. It's far from foolproof, since anyone can decide to view all files anyway.

Also, I don't think the term "website" applies to your bunch-o-pages on a CD, unless you're using some sort of live CD.

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GameMaster
BlabberMouth, a Blabber Odyssey
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 11:57      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I don't know what the iso standards are for file hiding. What OS is the destiniation. For linux, you can weakly "hide" a file by making a "dot file."

Windows has a hidden bit, which makes it not show up in a dir or explorer (unless show hidden is checked) by default.

As for an exacutable or binary wrapper, you have a few options:
code:
 - Flash
- Exports to .exe, if windows only
- Make the whole thing into a swf and embed
it into a very simple site. Requires Flash
plugin
- Make a simple Java browser (super easy in Java)
and have it get the files from a jar using a
compression stream. Note, a jar can be
unzipped. Requires host machine to run a JVM.
- Encryption (Can't think of a way to hide the
keys though... :/)



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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 12:11      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Every copy of the site comes free with a hitman that will shoot the user in the face if you touch files you shouldn't?
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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 13:28      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by drunkennewfiemidget:
Every copy of the site comes free with a hitman that will shoot the user in the face if you touch files you shouldn't?

When I was writting that, I was thinking... "WWRMSD" -- "What would Richard M Stallman do?"

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tweety
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 14:06      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Thanks for all the help. I actually figured out a great solution.

First, all I need to do is encrypt the HTML files (which I can do on the PC). Then, I use Toast on my Mac to write a Mac and PC disc, making sure that I have an alias and a link, toggle each to only show on their respective platforms, and make sure that the folder with all the goodies is marked "Invisible". The only trouble I will have is if someone who gets the CD actually has set Windows to show hidden files. But, for our target audience, I seriously doubt that will happen.

GameMaster, I did look into creating a a simple Java browser (my background is as a software developer), but a few things stopped me. I need to display Flash content (don't know if Flash and Java play nicely in this type of relationship), my Java networking knowledge is a bit thin, and I was looking for something a bit less involved (time is of the essence, unfortunately). But, thanks for the advice.

dnm, I would have put the hitman in, but most don't fit into the jewel cases. And, those that do seem to be poor shots.

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If I were a good man I'd talk to you more often than I do.
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IT, A Philosophy

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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted April 25, 2006 14:34      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If some of the content is Flash, why not just dunmp it all into flash?

Moreover, why is it so imparative to keep the source hidden/closed?

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tweety
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Icon 1 posted April 26, 2006 15:42      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
GameMaster,
In order to put it all into Flash, at this point, would be a rather large undertaking. It would also be ironic, as the Flash content was extracted from a previous Flash CD-ROM. Using HTML allows us to make updates easier, including adding and changing content.

Unless, of course, there is a way to display HTML within Flash without too much heavy lifting. That would be good to know.

Also, keeping the source hidden is important as there are images that could be, to put it nicely, "borrowed" without consent for various purposes, including creating similar items. Not a good thing.

Again, thanks for the suggestions. Hopefully, moving forward I will have time to come up with a more elegant approach. Preferably a nice Java browser.

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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted April 26, 2006 16:34      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
No, Flash doesn't support HTML except in text formatting. There isn't an easy way to convert either. Good luck with it.

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maximile

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Icon 1 posted April 27, 2006 03:04      Profile for maximile   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I wouldn't bother... if someone wants something badly enough, they can always take a screenshot. There's no way to stop that happening.

Maybe your solution will help to discourage kids using the images for their PowerPoint presentations, but it's not secure at all.

The only secure things I can think of for retaining images are: 1) a prominent watermark or 2) only including low-res versions.

I guess you're aware of the risks, as you mention that your target audience aren't too technically minded, but... well, I thought everyone knew what a screenshot does.

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canadiangeek
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Icon 1 posted April 27, 2006 04:53      Profile for canadiangeek     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by maximile:
I guess you're aware of the risks, as you mention that your target audience aren't too technically minded, but... well, I thought everyone knew what a screenshot does.

Can someone explain screenshots to me.... Do I need to use a magnum, or will a .22 suffice?

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tweety
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Icon 1 posted April 27, 2006 08:22      Profile for tweety   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
maximile,
it's not the screenshots we are terribly worried about. You're talking about a 72 dpi shot of a 72 dpi shot...I've noticed image degradation when you do that. It's about restricting access to the actual images, which will give people a "cleaner" image. We've already accepted the screenshot issue, we just don't want to give the whole thing away.

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IT, A Philosophy

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uilleann
Discontinued


Icon 1 posted April 30, 2006 04:02            Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
What, and right-click > Save Image As isn't going to work either? I came across a page where they'd removed my window's menu bar *and* blocked right-click on any part of the page. I don't know if ctrl-S worked, but I could still right-click using the contextual menu key in Windows and then ask to save the page -- I imagine ctrl-S was still working. lo, the page was saved. (Sayonara whoever it was who thought that blocking right-click was the answer, and don't forget that you can't hide the menu bar in Mac browsers!)

iCab on the Mac lets you generate complete external Web caches of whole sites or groups of sites which you could play with.

Flash can just be deconstructed, can't it? I got a friend to extract a tune from a cool Flash movie (WalkSmashWalk -- adorable) so that I could play it again without having to have the swf running and eating CPU. Maybe Flash can be encrypted; after all, Cold Fusion source code can be encrypted! (sheesh...)

The Web is not a secure place and there are always ways around irritating Webmasters.

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drunkennewfiemidget
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Icon 1 posted April 30, 2006 10:04      Profile for drunkennewfiemidget     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
People who think it's cool to disable right-click on a website PISS ME OFF.

#1: I use mouse gestures. And they're all initiated by holding down the right mouse button, and doing something. When these jerkoffs have an alertbox popping up in my face when I right click to perform a mouse gesture, I want to set them on fire.

#2: CTRL-U if I want your source in firefox, kthx. It's not even remotely effective, because the kind of person who wants your source is the same kind of person that knows how to spend 9 fucking seconds getting it despite disabling the right mouse button -- all you've done is piss off your site users.

#3: wget.

I have an entry in my prefs.js that disables javascript's ability to do anything on right click.

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GameMaster
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Icon 1 posted April 30, 2006 12:35      Profile for GameMaster   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
DNFM, wget isn't a solution here... as there is no webserver involved (it's a CD). Taking away right click always bugs me, as does hiding the menu. But your point is taken, there are always ways.

TWEETY, you're both inconsistent and paraniod.

Also, keeping the source hidden is important as there are images that could be ... "borrowed" without consent for ... creating similar items. Not a good thing.

But, for our target audience, I seriously doubt that will happen.

So you think that the target audience is smart enough to create a similar product given the source to yours, but not smart enough to know how to show hidden files in Windows? Moreover, hidden or not there are CD copier tools. If they want to copy your work, they will.... Even if they aren't the brightest bulbs.

Next you'll be installing DRM.

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-ct-
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Icon 1 posted April 30, 2006 16:04      Profile for -ct-   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by tweety:
Hi,
I have a problem/question. Is it possible to hide a folder on a CD, yet still have the files accessible via a browser? What I am looking to do is to create a CD with a website on it, but I want to be able to keep the image files (and possibly the HTML pages) accessible for viewing through a browser,...

and that's where it all falls apart

if i can see it (an image, embedded object, etc) in a browser, i will own it
it will be in my cache and i can get it whenever i want

what you want to do can't really be done

sure, you can do one or more of the suggestions posted already, but they'll only prevent a typical user from getting to them
and if they really want it they'll ask a geek to extract them


the only thing that might work is to make it a swf (.exe) instead
while it would take quite a bit more work to make it, and get images off/out of it - it's still not really secured

(and i'm sure you found all this out already)

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted April 30, 2006 18:46      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
tweety wrote:
it's not the screenshots we are terribly worried about. You're talking about a 72 dpi shot of a 72 dpi shot...I've noticed image degradation when you do that. It's about restricting access to the actual images, which will give people a "cleaner" image. We've already accepted the screenshot issue, we just don't want to give the whole thing away.

The only way you'll get image degradation in a screen shot is if you save the screen shot in a format that uses lossy compression. If the screen shot is saved in a format that uses lossless compression, then they have an exact duplicate of the image.

If you've accepted the screen shot issue, you've accepted exact copies of the image whether you realize it or not.

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