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Map Protection

FYI:EVERYONE knows =/ meh. prehaps a map protection article would be more suitable.Kizzycocoa 16:29, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

I don't think censoring information is such a good idea. The more people know, the better. --cheesemoo0 21:04, 3 December 2009 (UTC)

FINALLY! someone who agrees with giving out information, rather than make the reader learn!
I for one think, as long as we don't link, and make out that downloading it is the equivilent of murder, why not? it informs them on how to better protect the map, and makes the page more informative about the program Kizzycocoa 21:17, 3 December 2009 (UTC)
 :/--Gear 18:56, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
Not everyone respects mappers intellectual rights to their work and so protection is a way to ensure their rights are enforced. Even so, de-compilation of a map should be a last resort, contacting the original author and asking for the source files is preferable to the 'best guess' vmex makes with the structure, design and organization of a map. If a map has extra protection added to it then you should respect the authors wishes for they've added it for a reason. --Lost 06:10, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
This "protection" is nothing more than a flag that can be circumvented with modded versions of VMEX or other decompilers. Everyone who create maps for the Source Engine should bear in mind that their compiled BSPs can always be decompiled relatively easy and exact (compared to GoldSource BSPs). Those who don't agree with that shouldn't start mapping at all IMHO. --Barracuda 06:49, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
actually, this is a lie
the hacked version doesn't decompile those with the protector prefab
or, so I've been told. though, it has been tested (I did test it when messing around with the creator of portal:project beta), and it does seen that if you add said prefab, even the hacked version won't decompile.
hence how adding that to this article would not hinder people, but in fact, help them know one form of protection is completely foolproof. Kizzycocoa 08:19, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
There are several versions of vmex out there that have been hacked, I've tested 3 versions of them and they bypass all know forms of protection (Map Properties, Texture, Brush etc). I could code one myself but unlike many I respect the wishes of authors and ask permission/use of their original files. You really shouldn't outright state somethings a lie when you've only briefly touched on the subject, leave a margin of error.
I'd recommend having this board wiped again and that the subject be dropped. There is no need to add another link to the same source, the protector prefab is already available via the first link on the page, multiple links to the same site are not necessary. --Lost 14:27, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
None of the current forms of protection are protected from decompiling. Agreed the only reason for decompiling is to recover your own map or to learn from someone else's map, but the information should still be there. It has been said before that when mapping for Source your map might as well be OpenSource. If you don't want your map decompiled then don't release it. Ever. Information like this has a place on this wiki.--cheesemoo0 14:39, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
Kinda makes the point of VMEX's built in feature null to provide a link saying "Here's a prefab you can use to protect your map from being decompiled by my program, oh, and here's a link to a different version of the program which bypasses that protection". I still believe promoting a proper code of ethics is the better choice to make, even if I'm alone in that. --Lost 15:58, 4 December 2009 (UTC)

look, here's the bottom line.

Vmex map protection is part of the vmex program, despite pirated versions. hence, a small word should be given.

if indeed we want to go the whole hog on how there's a pirated version or not isn't important. the fact is, it is just that. fact. and wikipedia (and these wiki's) are here to preserve fact. howeer, this wiki has the advantage of looser rules on how information is presented. we can be bias slightly saying it is wrong to use the pirate version, or indeed, the pirate versions resets all I/O things, erases model information etc.

but, the thing is, despite our personal feelings of Vmex, we have to document it as close to fact as possible.

however, like said before, no-one will blame anyone for saying the pirate corrupts things, or saying the pirated is the scourge of the internet. and should someone misinform users of the pirated Vmex, I guarantee, the only ones who would care would be the hackers themselves, or wiki-freaks.

in fact, I'm sure many would go to a far extent to keep it wrong.

thought? I personally think that we could misinform, but I strongly believe that the article should mention at least a line about protection (despite it deserving a paragraph or two) Kizzycocoa 16:27, 4 December 2009 (UTC)

Protection would be good, but once again this all comes down to a moral issue. We can only discuss, and do so much.--Gear 18:55, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
we could add it in, and not mention the pirate at all.
or, add it, and misinform.
we have a few choices/ just wanted to point them out Kizzycocoa 18:58, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
The methods and everything associated with breaking the protection is discussed in Decompiling Maps so I don't see the argument in wiping out this discussion and not considering putting a link to the Hacked VMEX. Discussing protection methods is beyond the scope of this article and therefore should not be put in. They are already discussed in full in the article linked.--cheesemoo0 20:47, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
so, the whole article on protecting maps, is in the section about decompiling them? =/ Kizzycocoa 21:27, 4 December 2009 (UTC)
Makes sense, Protection from decompiling in the decompiling section. This page is just about the program VMEX itself(Not about hacked versions of it), but I'll add a link to the decompiling article as its a closly related subject.--Lost 18:54, 5 December 2009 (UTC)
well, may I suggest a rename of that page to "decompiling and protecting maps"? I mean, sorta stupid we frown upon decompiling maps, yet make an article on decompiling them and protecting using the worse of the two terms =S Kizzycocoa 18:57, 5 December 2009 (UTC)
We don't frown upon maps, that doesn't even make sense. However, about the other point, Page names should be short and somewhat succinct, makes searches easier. I don't see why the protection subheading should get anymore attention than the toolbox links or the porting maps sections. Decompiling involves all those topics so the title fits. Your suggestion really should be posted on the page in question rather than here anyways. --Lost 19:30, 5 December 2009 (UTC)
you comment on something that was OBVIOUSLY a typo? =/
and I'll go there and do so
right after dinner anyway.
so, yeah/ I'll add to that talk page in about an hour or so. Kizzycocoa 20:33, 5 December 2009 (UTC)
No, we don't need to discuss this any further, I think we have the notion of it. Lastly everything said and stated not by kizzy is all true. This article is about VMEX, and not about decompiling maps.--Gear 22:54, 5 December 2009 (UTC)

Left 4 Dead 2

I've written a tool that allows VMEX to decompile L4D2 maps and added it to the list, hope thats ok with everyone. --Omnicoder 22:01, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

May I suggest that you don't use dropbox? Their policy states that they will suspend accounts that act like distribution hubs. --ThaiGrocer 22:08, 11 March 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the tip, updated.--Omnicoder 22:23, 11 March 2010 (UTC)

Zeno Clash

ZC is named in the list of supported games, but always when I try to decompile a map, I get a Prop_Statics exception. Am I doing something wrong or is it *not* supported?--Lexx2k 16:33, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Ew, nevermind. Of course, exactly now when I have posted this, I get it to work...--Lexx2k 16:35, 20 September 2010 (UTC)

Where is Valve's Portal maps?

I don't know where Valve's map files for Portal are. I want to decompile their maps and find out how to do certain stuff (i.e. how to create box droppers that you can break through like in the Portal game). Maybe someone can show me where to find the map files? --Nathaniel 03:19, 30 September 2010 (UTC)

Open [...]\Steam\SteamApps\portal content.gcf with GCFScape, the BSP files are inside the "maps" folder. You can extract them from there and then decompile. --Barracuda 06:11, 30 September 2010 (UTC)
Thanks for the tip, though I don't really have GCFScape. --Nathaniel 17:22, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
It's free, and this is the internet. Thelonesoldier 21:27, 2 October 2010 (UTC)
EDIT: I just downloaded GCFScape from the internet and can finally find Valve's stuff. Thanks! --Nathaniel 15:12, 9 October 2010 (UTC)

VMEX doesn't always decompile perfectly?

Is it just me or has anybody else noticed that sometimes decompiling certain Half-Life 2 (including Ep1 and Ep2) maps, you'll find strange design techniques that doesn't really make sense? Some maps I've noticed a lot use func_brush on materials textured with tools/toolsblack that sort of act like area portals. But is instead triggered to enable/disable when the player enters a new area, sort of like opening/closing an area portal. So why not use an area portal instead of the strangely black func_brush?

Also, in Episode 2 when you are with the vort to retrieve the larva extract, the main chamber's pit (if you were to fall off the pathway) is textured with a model, not a material. And there is a strange material that is also a model that covers some of the hive near the extract.

There were a few other strange things I noticed that I can't remember now, but what I'm really asking is if this decompiler really decompiles everything correctly. --Mattshu 13:35, 31 January 2011 (UTC)

I can say for sure that VMEX has some bugs that can cause strange results when viewed in Hammer. I've fixed quite many of them in BSPSource, for example brushes that are decompiled with the toolsnodraw texture instead of toolsblocklight or area portal brushes that appear as solid brushes.
In your case, these black func_brushes are probably part of func_areaportalwindows and are displayed on distance when the portal is closed. --Barracuda 00:11, 1 February 2011 (UTC)