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I am able to cheat. What is the algorithm they use to validate the word list? (enable). Is there some kind of hash?

0 votes
Like the title says, I can alter the word list, but only every once in a while. As a computer scientist, I am very curious about these types of things, so I would like to know, how does WWF know when the enable file has been altered?


asked 11 years ago in Dictionary by anonymous
yeah I was just curious. Its funny pissing my friends off, but still very teasing to me when the program exits itself 50% of the time. There must be some sort of checksum or hash encrypted somewhere else. Im not going to go through the effort to find it.

2 Answers

+2 votes
I don't know, and even if I did, I would not want to reveal the integrity checking mechanism for the wordlist. Once that info gets out, someone publishes a hack, then the tournaments are flooded with bogus games, making a lot of hard work to sort out the cheaters. We went through this last year, which is when NewToy locked down the wordlist.
answered 11 years ago by Word Enthusiast (620 points)
Mark, the word list itself is still not locked down. It is a simple text file.

To see the Words With Friends dictionary.

On a Mac go to ~Music/iTunes/iTunes Music/Mobile Applications and copy "Words x.xx.ipa" to your Desktop (make sure you copy and don’t just move it). Note that x.xx is the version number, open the highest one for the current dictionary (this of course assumes you sync your iOS device to a computer).

If you use the free version then the file will be "Words Free x.xx.ipa". If you use the iPad version then the file will be "Words HD x.xx.ipa".

Right/Control click on the file and Open With… Archive Utility.app.

This will create a folder named "Words 4.00".

Navigate inside "Words 4.00" to the Payload folder and go to "WordsWithFriendsPaid.app".

Right/Control click on "WordsWithFriendsPaid.app" and Show Package Contents.

Look for the file "enable1.txt", copy it to your Desktop and rename it "Words 4.00 Dictionary.txt".

Open the file in your favorite text editor or word processor, I suggest either BBEdit or TextWrangler (both available on the MacAppStore, the latter free). TextEdit on the Mac will also work fine.

If you use Windows or a synced Android phone, I assume that the procedure is somewhat similar. I assume that an UnZip utility will unarchive a .ipa file and you can use WordPad, Word, Excel, or your favorite text editor to open "enable1.txt".

NotePad under XP will not see the line breaks between words correctly in  "enable1.txt" and will import everything in a single line. Microsoft Excel will cut off the list at "gypsum", if saving to a non-.xlsx format.

Voila, you can now see the playable words IN YOUR VERSION OF THE SOFTWARE.

Now, I know how to edit that word list, but I won't explain that, and as I've never actually tried to edit it, I don't know if the software uses a checksum or other method to detect changes.
I was researching scrabble cheats for an article and found 'how to' info is available online. It seemed extremely tedious, and a tremendous amount of work just to add a bogus word that can be easily verified by opponent by checking an unaltered word list. It' seems to be a matter of fooling the system by reallocating the precise # of bits---subtract here to add there, etc. Like how the mom who counted heads didn't realize her kid was left Home Alone. I could have this wrong, I'm no scientist. Can't believe people would go to the trouble, except as a practical joke.
+1 vote
I'm not a computer scientist.  My personal guess is that something like MD5 should be pretty secure.  I have no actual idea but they have implemented but I would recommend contacting Zynga to let them know about the vulnerability so they can correct the problem.
answered 11 years ago by Word Veteran (1,170 points)

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