How-To: Radare2

Radare2 is one of the most powerful debuggers out there. It is a command-line tool with a rather unintuitive interface, but once you get used to it, it is very powerful. radare2 is a major step from gdb because of the decompilation tools it offers.

radare2 is especially powerful on 64-bit binaries because it automatically resolves function signatures and strings. This makes it easy to understand the underlying C code of the binary.


Radare2 is basically the equivalent of using Vim instead of another text editor (like Nano). gdb is far more straightforward, but the feature set of radare2 can make it worth your time. It's a fantastic tool for reverse engineering and binex if appropriately used.

If you don't care to learn a new tool, spend the effort to become a master at gdb.


Installation depends on the operating system you are running. The main two operating systems I expect are Kali and Ubuntu Linux. Here is how you install for each:

sudo apt install radare2


You can analyze and run the binary for debugging using the following command:

r2 -d -A <binary>

We use the -d and -A flags to speed our development process by preemptively analyzing the binary. You can open a binary without these flags (with radare2 <binary>); however, you will need to run the analysis commands yourself.

Coming Soon

These are some topics that I plan to cover in the future:

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