Linking Assemblies

Assembly linking is an acute angle of any application including multiple assemblies. In combination with the other features of Skater .NET Obfuscator, assembly linking provides conclusive advantages for your .NET application by increasing reliability and security while reducing size. If your executable relies on .NET assemblies, assembly linking is categorical to protect your application against deciphering and hackers. Also it allows package your application effectually.

When packaging, within the assembly obfuscation, you can combine assemblies using the assembly linker. For example, instead of deploying main.dll, a.dll, and b.dll separately, you could deploy main.dll using the Assembly Linker interface that is a significant part of Skater .NET Obfuscator. The a.dll and b.dll will be joined into the main.dll

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When distributing several closely related but separate DLLs is not that much of a plague, it would be a nice if, since they are so closely interlaced, you could merge these different assemblies into one. The ability to merge multiple libraries together would simplify deployment in many cases; applications that use several different languages or huge applications written in the same language but built upon many different projects would benefit from single-assembly deployment.

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The Skater's special Linker interface is the utility that can link multiple modules into a single file for deployment. It does the linkage afterwards your main assembly has been obfuscated. The Linker interface intended for linking multiple managed executables or assemblies into a single module or assembly. The assigned referenced and non-referenced assemblies will be linked into your final obfuscated assembly afterwards when obfuscation is done for your current open assembly. NOTE: The linked assemblies will not be obfuscated. Please obfuscate the joined modules before Linkage. Or you may suggest secure the combined libraries after Linkage.

Usually, if all the functionality of your distributed application is not required at once, you might want to consider having the application divided into separate modules or libraries. The .NET runtime will load each component only when a type is referenced.

On the second hand, packaging everything into a single file will bring performance improvements, mostly because the loader does not have to take the time to resolve all the dependency issues. Also, you do not have to worry about missing dlls when your application is deployed.

How does it work? What steps we need to do to link assemblies into one module and then obfuscate it?
You can run the assemblies linkage in two different ways.

1. Run Linkage and Obfuscation together
You need to obfuscate your main module first. Then pre-link referenced and non-referenced assemblies to the main module to create your app bundle for deployment.
This method has the following weakness. For this scenario your main module will be linked pre-obfuscated inside the big .NET bundle. But other linked assemblies will not be secured. You can run the way by clicking the "Obfuscate" button. Since it is not possible to link pre-obfuscated satellite assemblies please use the second way to obfuscate your whole .NET application compiled code.

2. Linking the files first, then obfuscating them all with the "Obfuscate" button click
You need to combine all dependencies of your project into a single .NET assembly without obfuscation first. Then you will obfuscate that single big module by using pre-stored obfuscation settings.
This method is much preferable. However it requires two steps to obfuscate your whole .NET compiled code. To accomplish the method please follow:
1. Go to the Linker tab and specify the modules to be linked together.
2. Click the "Link Assemblies" button presented on the Linker tab. With these selections it will not really obfuscate anything - it will only do the linking.
3. Open the new file that was generated.
4. On the Options tab turn off linking and set the obfuscation types desired.
5. Click the "Obfuscate" button.

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Skater .NET Obfuscator is a comprehensive professional solution for .NET application code protection. With the .NET Obfuscator you can easily protect Microsoft .NET framework applications from illegal code extraction and reverse engineering. Moreover, you do not need any source code changes or programming experience to accomplish professional software protection of your programs. Obfuscator reconstructs your .NET assemblies to the new view that is impracticable to be understand, and impossible to decompile.

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