[Tutor] Creating a closed source application in Python?

Alan Gauld alan.gauld at btinternet.com
Mon May 28 19:21:29 CEST 2007

"Sophie Marston" <powerpython at googlemail.com> wrote

> Is it possible to create a closed source project in Python? Like in 
> C++
> or something, where they can't view your code?

Partially. It is usually possible to reverse engineer the code
but it won''t look as pretty as the original nor will it necessarily
have all the comments etc. But it will be readable. Of course
you can reverse engineer C++ programs too but less
successfully and usually with expensive tools.

However closed source doesn't mean you don't distribute
the source, it means you can't (legally) change the source.
Most commercial mainframe programs are 'closed source'
but they include a source code listing so that the
operations teams can figfure out whats going wrong in
the event of an abend (ABnormal END - mainframe speak
for a crash!)

So in a legal sense closde source is just as easy to distribute
as open source. If what you want is hidden source then you
need to distribute either the .pyc compiled files or use something
like py2exe to convert to an executable bundle. You could also
use Jython and compile to JVM code which is easily reverse
engineered into Jaba, but not so easily into Python!


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