- Paperback: 232 pages
- Publisher: No Starch Press; 1 edition (23 April 2009)
- Language: English
- ISBN-10: 1593271921
- ISBN-13: 978-1593271923
- Product Dimensions: 17.8 x 2.3 x 22.9 cm
- Average Customer Review: 1 customer review
- Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,54,912 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
Gray Hat Python – Python Programming for Hackers and Reverse Engineers Paperback – 23 Apr 2009
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About the Author
Justin Seitz is a Senior Security Researcher for Immunity, Inc., where he spends his time bug hunting, reverse engineering, writing exploits, and coding Python.
From the Publisher
|Automate the Boring Stuff with Python||Python Crash Course||Doing Math with Python||Black Hat Python||Python Playground||Gray Hat Python|
|User Experience Level||Beginners||Beginners||Readers who know Python basics||Intermediate||Experienced||Experienced|
|For readers who want to…||Use Python to automate tedious computer tasks||Get a fast-paced, thorough introduction to Python and create three substantial projects from scratch||Delve into high school-level math topics using Python||Write Python-based offensive security tools on the fly||Explore Python’s versatility with imaginative programming projects||Automate security tasks, discover vulnerabilities, and write their own hacking tools|
|Tools Covered||Regular Expressions, Requests, Beautiful Soup, OpenPyXL, PyPDF2, PyAutoGUI||PyGame, matplotlib, Pygal, Django||matplotlib, SymPy||Scapy, openCV, BurpSuite, ctypes, Paramiko, urllib2||matplotlib, Numpy, OpenGL, Pillow, Arduino, Raspberry Pi||PyDBG, Immunity Debugger, Sulley, IDA Python, PyEMU, PyDev, ctypes|
|Compatible with Python Version||Python 3||Python 2 & 3||Python 3||Python 2||Python 2 & 3||Python 2|
|Page Count||504 pp.||560 pp.||264 pp.||192 pp.||352 pp.||216 pp.|
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Top customer reviews
Most helpful customer reviews on Amazon.com
The code is a disaster. It is unclearly written, with a mixture of typos and lines shouldn't be there. If you type in the code as written, it does not work. There were some "updates" added to correct some issues, but other unclear/incorrect parts are not in the updates. If the code doesn't work as-written, it is impossible to tell if I'm entering the code wrong or if the problem is the way the code is written in the book.
For a breakdown of the errors: http://stacksmash.org/2009/06/gray-hat-python-by-justin-seitz-errata/
In short, it's a great 31 pages but after that the book is useless. If one is already an expert in Python and C, then they can possibly know enough to correct the coding errors but the reason I bought the book was to gain experience with Python. Is it that hard to at least make sure the code works?
I wouldn't have an issue with typographical errors, but the code falling part as early as page 31 is inexcusable.
Very, very disappointed with not only this book but No Starch Press.
Do not buy.
The content itself is good. It's well organized and very clear, even for someone like me who is a self-taught programmer with ~1 year of Python experience. Perusing Chapters 2 and 3 should bring anyone up to speed on debuggers. The remaining chapters do a nice job of explaining various Python tools to use in hacking and reverse engineering.
Unfortunately, the code fragments in Chapter 3 (where you build your own debugger in Python) could best be described as a disaster. I expect a programming book's code to run without extensive tweaks. I don't need it to be the most Pythonic code in the world ... just generate the expected results. Given the importance of Chapter 3 to your understanding of a good portion of the book, these errors were a killer.
Given that the code required extensive fixes to run as intended, the errata (now on No Starch Press's website) was delayed by at least a year from publishing, and there was no forum on No Starch Press's website to pass errata around in the meantime, the book loses 2 stars.
The lesson: if you're going to publish a programming book, get the code right. Absent the ability to do so, at least support your book's readers in working around the issues.
Edit: Sorry, wanted to point out one more thing. For Chapter 3, the code on the website's source files don't always match the code walked through in the book, even on parts of the code that are fully functioning. Your best bet is to start with the code on the website and debug that.
That being said, I found this book to be a very interesting read. It took my mind to uses of Python that I had truly never considered before!
It is in my opinion not for someone learning Python. Also, if you already have an understanding of some of the internals of computing, you'll get more out of the book. Worst case, though, it will show you areas where you might want to partake of further study.
You are not going to learn anything "subversive" in this book. But, with what you learn in this book, and your imagination, you could certainly come up with something of that ilk.
If you're into hacking ( in the broad definition of the term: to really learn everything you can about the machine, etc. ), you'll enjoy this book. If you're just looking for recipes, or "script kiddie" stuff, you'll be disappointed.
I recommend the book.
The key problem with this book, as has been mentioned already, is it's coverage. With at title such as "Grey Hat Python", you simple could not omit tools/frameworks such as Scapy.
If it were titled, and marketed as "Windows reversing and binary vulnerability analysis using python", we would've known what to expect, and would be 5-star
The bottom line is the book is FUN to read, and opens up the minds of those programmers / hackers out their who have a PASSION this stuff ;-)
This book gave me some super insight into some of the lower level things "non hackers" have probably been missing all along. We all know the best programmers in the world are hackers and I think Justin has done a wonderful job showing just how cool, EASY and FUN hacking in Python can really be!
I must say I had numerous times in the book where I would smile and think "WOW, now that's cool" ;-)
I must also say I am well impressed with "Immunity Debugger", another superb product that unless I had read the book, I would have never heard about...
So keep up the great work Justin, and I really look forward to if you ever bring out a 2nd edition in years to come, that will be fun!