Learning Assembler: The easy way!

Well, I’ve finally succumbed to the pressure from…..well…me. As many of you know, I’m interested in the world of security and I thought one way to take this to a new level would be to learn the language of the shellcode, Assembler. For those of you who think I’m being vague, I’m talking about x86 ASM. I want to be able to look at a piece of shellcode and even some malware, and understand what at least part of it means.

So just how do you go about learning assembler? It’s probably one of the most difficult languages to learn. It is the lowest level of computer programming, other than dealing directly in Machine Code (not pretty). I’m not going to delve into the details of what I’ve learnt so far, but I do want to shout out to the great resource which has made learning Assembler possible for me. Security Tube has some awesome tutorial videos. In particular, this series, really takes you through learning Assembler in a simple and structured manner. I’m far from finished with this topic, but I’m getting there slowly.

  1. Please tell me you’re doing this only for learning and you’re not actually going to write and distribute prgrams coded in assembler…

    • I’d like to at least be able to write my own shellcode, to better understand security in both windows and linux environments. But you are right…..I won’t be doing anything heavy in ASM 🙂

      • Kelvin Gardiner
      • January 18th, 2010

      Assembler was the first language I learned. I converter it into hex and typed the hex by hand into a test machine (8086 based I think). It made understanding pointers and such in C much easier. Assembler in is awesome, everyone should learn it.

      Maybe these guys would be interested in your comments: http://www.menuetos.net/.

  2. An excellent series indeed.

    I like the fact that, before jumping into the code, the author takes the time to provide some context and share his knowledge of systems internals.
    And even if, like you just said, you don’t end up doing actual heavy code in ASM, it’s always good to learn how these weird beasts work 🙂

    Thanks for the tip.

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