Thursday, December 11, 2008

Tool for protecting your Dynamics AX source code

"Is there a way to protect/hide my X++ code?"
People asked me this question a million times by now.

To most of them, I described 2 possible ways to go, that I know of:
- Do not share the source code, but instead provide the customers with an AOD file.
- Use a tool that would produce obfuscated code out of your modifications.

Both ways are not perfect, of course. If you provide the code as an AOD file, you need to be sure that the customer does not have X++ license. If you provide obfuscated code, the customer developers (if they are present) will have a hard time interacting with your code. And, eventually, both ways leave the customer at a disadvantage. As soon as the vendor is not there to support (provide fixes in terms of an updated AOD file or XPO with obfuscated code) them for whatever reason, the customer has no way of supporting the add-on solution on their own.

But this post is not about the cons of trying to protect your code.
It's about the possibilities. Today, finally, I can support my previous suggestion #2 with an actual link to such a tool: Next Innovation Code Scrambler Homepage

Here is a screenshot of how the code looks after Code Scrambler is finished with it:

Note, that the tool is not free, and I have not actually tried it out.
But there is a sample project showing the resulting scrambled code. You can download it for a first impression, and contact the company if you are interested in the tool.

Another note - this is not an advertisement, I am not in any way related to Next Innovation Company.