On Thu, 4 Jan 2001, Mitch Vincent wrote:

>     I work for a software company and write software commercially (as I'm
> sure many of you do) so I'm constantly looking for ways to make development
> faster, better and more fun. Ruby does all of that but it has the same
> shortcoming that PHP does  -- there isn't any way to obfuscate the source
> code so in order to distribute an application to a client or clients, one
> must give out the source... I can't imagine how quickly Ruby would spread
> (think the rate it's growing now, multiplied by wild fire, squared) if there
> was some sort of encoder to allow ruby applications to be distributed in
> non-source form...
> 
It is of course depends on what level of "security" you want from such an
encoder; a competent person can always unpack the code using
disassemblers, API monitors and the like. His/her task will also be
simpler since the Ruby source code will be open-source in the foreseeable
future.

If you need something simple you might want to have a look at rbwrap. At
least it will give you an exe to distribute instead of the rb files.
It currently does not obfuscate or encode ruby code in any way but it
wouldn't be to difficult to add such features. Especially for modes
where files aren't unpacked to disc but ran direct from memory (not
implemented yet but mentioned in the design doc). Take a look at the
design document in the tarball. I'd welcome any ideas you might have on
these issues.

Regards,

Robert