It turns out that my programme spread rather a lot. Rather too much in fact, so much so that the lecturers realised which Richard it was and today I got a formal written warning at Tec. They were originally going to suspend me, but because my programme didn’t do any damage I only got a written warning. Apparently its not a good idea to write programmes that spread over the network – thats called a virus, and is bad. The head of year was impressed that I had made it work, but still said I should not have done it.
Time to retire writing programmes like Richardey then, even if they do no damage and are just a bit of fun. It did get me thinking as to what sort of programme I could actually write if I wanted to. With Windows now storing everything in the same place, it would be easy to write a programme to send a copy of someones documents to a different computer on the same network, but I can’t figure out how to get it to do that over the internet, which would be way better.
Today I deployed my programme that I have written after finding and reading through the manual that Mr Breakey showed us as part of our memory resident programming module that we have been doing since September. The manual is absolutely brilliant and shows how to make programmes re-load themselves even if the computer is turned off and on again.
I’ve written it in C and have compiled it into an executable that changes its name and pointers to it every time it runs so that it is more difficult to remove. It also copies a couple of backups so that if someone deletes one version if can re-install itself. In total when compiled its only 28Kb in size – way smaller than my old Basic programmes. It also looks for open network ports and copies itself to them, which was something I learned from when we had to make programmes that can send messages between computers. Its absolutely insane that the computers are all so wide open.
Every time the computer runs the programme just checks to see if it is the 23rd May, and if it does, it calculates what age I will be and displays a message saying “Make sure you wish Richard a happy 00th/rd/nd birthday”.
I’ve spent a couple of weeks re-writing the floppy disk copying programme that I originally designed in Basic in to C, and its much, much better now too.
I copied it on to one of the library computers and within 10 minutes I could see by going to other computers and looking at the autoexec.bat files on them that the programme had successfully copied itself to all of them. Will be interesting to see how far I can make it spread in time for my birthday in 5 months time.
Today I wrote my first program in QBasic. I managed to get it copied on to our 286 computer using 2 floppy disks that managed to buy this week for £1 each from the school office. I copied QBasic from the computer at school on to the disks and managed to get it working at home!