Aug 12, 2018
unknown is an easy network programming challenge.
The hint only contained an IP address and port, 172.31.2.59 51966. When you connected, it would ask you to decode a base64 string. When you responded with the answer within a second, it would respond with a morse code string. After the morse, it would respond with a binary string. After the binary it would respond with a hex string with spaces between each byte. After the hex string, it would respond with a base64 string and so on. Since the formats were constant while the strings were variable, I was able to hardcode them, but because I didn’t want any surprises, I wrote a quick function called “solve” that would detect each type and decode. Running this in a loop, I got the solution to this challenge. Instead of 12 solutions, the challenge required between 64 and 76 solutions. But since they were just a few codecs, it was pretty easy. The original code was written by my teammate forte. The code quality of this solution is far lower than most of the code I write because I don’t write Python 2 code anymore. There is little to no documentation.