Convert raw binary file to ascii

r2 rlichlighter at
Mon Jul 27 13:25:18 EDT 2009

On Jul 27, 9:06 am, Peter Otten <__pete... at> wrote:
> r2 wrote:
> > I have a memory dump from a machine I am trying to analyze. I can view
> > the file in a hex editor to see text strings in the binary code. I
> > don't see a way to save these ascii representations of the binary, so
> > I went digging into Python to see if there were any modules to help.
> > I found one I think might do what I want it to do - the binascii
> > module. Can anyone describe to me how to convert a raw binary file to
> > an ascii file using this module. I've tried? Boy, I've tried.
> That won't work because a text editor doesn't need any help to convert the
> bytes into characters. If it expects ascii it just will be puzzled by bytes
> that are not valid ascii. Also, it will happily display byte sequences that
> are valid ascii, but that you as a user will see as gibberish because they
> were meant to be binary data by the program that wrote them.
> > Am I correct in assuming I can get the converted binary to ascii text
> > I see in a hex editor using this module? I'm new to this forensics
> > thing and it's quite possible I am mixing technical terms. I am not
> > new to Python, however. Thanks for your help.
> Unix has the "strings" commandline tool to extract text from a binary.
> Get hold of a copy of the MinGW tools if you are on windows.
> Peter

Okay. Thanks for the guidance. I have a machine with Linux, so I
should be able to do what you describe above. Could Python extract the
strings from the binary as well? Just wondering.

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