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nullschritt

Save INI data to exe. (while open)

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Hello all, this script(wrapper) uses Alternative Data Streams to store INI formatted data in the active executable even while it is running. This is great for standalone executables, or storing data you don't want a user being able to edit!

There are four simple commands:

Func _iniwrite($section, $key, $value, $stream = "DEFAULT")
    return IniWrite(@ScriptFullPath&":"&$stream, $section, $key, $value)
EndFunc

Func _iniread($section, $key, $default = "", $stream = "DEFAULT")
    return IniRead(@ScriptFullPath&":"&$stream, $section, $key, $default)
EndFunc

Func _inidelete($section, $key = "", $stream = "DEFAULT")
    if $key <> "" Then
    Return IniDelete(@ScriptFullPath&":"&$stream, $section, $key)
Else
    Return IniDelete(@ScriptFullPath&":"&$stream, $section)
    EndIf
EndFunc

Func _inirenamesection($section, $newsection, $flag = 0, $stream = "DEFAULT")
    return IniRenameSection(@ScriptFullPath&":"&$stream, $section, $newsection, $flag)
EndFunc

Simply copy and paste these functions into your script!

Edited by nullschritt

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Struggling here to think of a use.

To me, you might as well use regular variables.

Unless I'm missing something.

I personally use the method to store product keys of programs which require an active subscription to work.

Not to mention it quite literally associates the data with the exe, so programs that store user data can be made completley standalone, and still have redundant setting storage.

And there's also the fact that the user can't delete or edit the data directly, so as not to cause any errors by invalid config settings.

I know it's a really simple wrapper, but it does have practical uses.

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Of course this has its limitations.


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Updated: 22/04/2018

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Of course this has its limitations.

Yes, Alternative Data Streams only work with NTFS file system (which is can be a positive as well as a negative) [data is lost when the file is copied to another pc] *(under MOST conditions)

But that's the only "limitation" I can think of (:

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Thanks for submitting this. I have used INI's off and on. I have hidden them within the OS or create a temp INI and then kill if off. This makes it much more straightforward.

Cheers.

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As I know nothing about Alternative Data Streams, if the idea is what I think it is, it could be a great and simple way to store .ini at the .exe

1- how do I embeb my ini lines at the .exe, supposing I have a previous .ini? This data becomes part of the .exe?

2- once embebed it will stay there? Even betwen runs?

3- if I copy this .exe to another PC, you told that the data will not be at the other PC. Can you tell why?

Thanks

Jose

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joseLB,

googling "Alternative Data Streams" would answer all your 3 questions, and more.


This wonderful site allows debugging and testing regular expressions (many flavors available). An absolute must have in your bookmarks.
Another excellent RegExp tutorial. Don't forget downloading your copy of up-to-date pcretest.exe and pcregrep.exe here
RegExp tutorial: enough to get started
PCRE v8.33 regexp documentation latest available release and currently implemented in AutoIt beta.

SQLitespeed is another feature-rich premier SQLite manager (includes import/export). Well worth a try.
SQLite Expert (freeware Personal Edition or payware Pro version) is a very useful SQLite database manager.
An excellent eBook covering almost every aspect of SQLite3: a must-read for anyone doing serious work.
SQL tutorial (covers "generic" SQL, but most of it applies to SQLite as well)
A work-in-progress SQLite3 tutorial. Don't miss other LxyzTHW pages!
SQLite official website with full documentation (may be newer than the SQLite library that comes standard with AutoIt)

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As I know nothing about Alternative Data Streams, if the idea is what I think it is, it could be a great and simple way to store .ini at the .exe

1- how do I embeb my ini lines at the .exe, supposing I have a previous .ini? This data becomes part of the .exe?

2- once embebed it will stay there? Even betwen runs?

3- if I copy this .exe to another PC, you told that the data will not be at the other PC. Can you tell why?

Thanks

Jose

1)If you want to copy a previous INI to the exe, you will have to write a code to read the previous ini file then write then to current exe using some sort of loop. The data is not actually stored inside the executable code, but rather along side it.

2)Yes the data is persistent between runs.

3)The data is only lost when the exe file is copied to a filesystem which doesnt support Alternative Data Streams (webservers, most flash drives, and discs)

Ex: Copying from point A to point B on the same pc wouldnt cause data loss, but coping from pc1 to pc2 would.

Hope this helps!

Edited by nullschritt

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2)Yes the data is persistent between runs.

Now that's a decent use for this.

EDIT:

For example if you wanted to invisibly keep track of how many times a user runs your script.

Edited by JohnOne

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Nice idea :)


 

OS : Win XP SP2 (32 bits) / Win 7 SP1 (64 bits) / Win 8 (64 bits) | Autoit version: latest stable / beta.
Hardware : Intel(R) Core(TM) i5-2400 CPU @ 3.10Ghz / 8 GiB RAM DDR3.

My UDFs : Skype UDF | TrayIconEx UDF | GUI Panel UDF | Excel XML UDF | Is_Pressed_UDF

My Projects : YouTube Multi-downloader | FTP Easy-UP | Lock'n | WinKill | AVICapture | Skype TM | Tap Maker | ShellNew | Scriptner | Const Replacer | FT_Pocket | Chrome theme maker

My Examples : Capture toolIP Camera | Crosshair | Draw Captured Region | Picture Screensaver | Jscreenfix | Drivetemp | Picture viewer

My Snippets : Basic TCP | Systray_GetIconIndex | Intercept End task | Winpcap various | Advanced HotKeySet | Transparent Edit control

 

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1)If you want to copy a previous INI to the exe, you will have to write a code to read the previous ini file then write then to current exe using some sort of loop. The data is not actually stored inside the executable code, but rather along side it.

2)Yes the data is persistent between runs.

3)The data is only lost when the exe file is copied to a filesystem which doesnt support Alternative Data Streams (webservers, most flash drives, and discs)

Ex: Copying from point A to point B on the same pc wouldnt cause data loss, but coping from pc1 to pc2 would.

Hope this helps!

Thanks nullscritt, it become clear

Do you think there is a way to include the .ini, and also images/icons, (used in gui´s for example) and even sounds in the .exe?

I mean, to have just one file (.exe) with all these items, so if I send this .exe file, for example, zipped thru an email, it will work?

Better, if I do not have to modify my gui created with Koda, for example

Thanks

Jose

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Sorry about me posting in this old thread but... wow I never knew about this, thanks for sharing!

Here is my more complete version of it, also supporting non-NTFS filesystems through a fallback routine:

#include <WinAPIFiles.au3>

Func _StreamIniDelete($sSection = "", $sKey = Default, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    If $sSection = "" Then
        ;completely delete ini file stream through winapi (built in filedelete doesn't support it)
        Return _WinAPI_DeleteFile(_StreamIniPath($sStream, 1))
    Else
        Return IniDelete(_StreamIniPath($sStream, 1), $sSection, $sKey)
    EndIf
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniRead($sSection, $sKey, $sDefault, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniRead(_StreamIniPath($sStream, 1), $sSection, $sKey, $sDefault)
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniReadSection($sSection, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniReadSection(_StreamIniPath($sStream, 1), $sSection)
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniReadSectionNames($sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniReadSectionNames(_StreamIniPath($sStream, 1))
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniRenameSection($sSection, $sNewSection, $iFlag = 0, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniRenameSection(_StreamIniPath($sStream), $sSection, $sNewSection, $iFlag)
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniWrite($sSection, $sKey, $sValue, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniWrite(_StreamIniPath($sStream), $sSection, $sKey, $sValue)
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniWriteSection($sSection, $vData, $iIndex = 1, $sStream = "DEFAULT")
    Return IniWriteSection(_StreamIniPath($sStream), $sSection, $vData, $iIndex)
EndFunc

Func _StreamIniPath($sStream = "DEFAULT", $iRead = 0)
    Local Static $sBase = ""
    Local $sPath = ""

    If StringLen($sStream) Then
        If $sBase = "" Then
            If DriveGetFileSystem(StringLeft(@ScriptDir, 2)) = "NTFS" Then
                ;current drive is NTFS (supports streams)
                $sBase = @ScriptFullPath
            Else
                ;current drive is not NTFS (no stream support)
                ;fallback to regular path
                $sBase = @TempDir & "\" & @ScriptName
            EndIf
        EndIf
        If $sBase = @ScriptFullPath Then
            $sPath = $sBase & ":" & $sStream
        Else
            ;create directory if necessary
            If Not $iRead And DirGetSize($sBase) = -1 Then DirCreate($sBase)
            $sPath = $sBase & "\" & $sStream & ".ini"
        EndIf
    EndIf

    Return $sPath
EndFunc

One really cool thing is, FileWrite and InetGet also support writing to these alternate data streams, so you could use _StreamIniPath to load a remote standard config directly into your .au3/.exe :D

Edited by Synix

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