Tips and Tricks for Common Packers

This section covers just a sampling of popular packers that you are likely to encounter when analyzing malware. For each packer covered, we’ve included a description and a strategy for unpacking manually. Automated unpackers are also listed for some of these, but they do not always work. For each packer, strategies for finding the OEP and potential complications are also included.


The most common packer used for malware is the Ultimate Packer for eXecutables (UPX). UPX is open source, free, and easy to use, and it supports a wide variety of platforms. UPX compresses the executable, and is designed for performance rather than security. UPX is popular because of its high decompression speed, and the small size ...

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