Authors: John Clemens (UMBC and JHU/APL)



Recent research has repeatedly shown that machine learning techniques can be applied to either whole files or file fragments to classify them for analysis. We build upon these techniques to show that for samples of the un-labeled compiled computer object code, one can apply the same type of analysis to classify important aspects of the code, such as its target architecture and endianness. We show that using simple byte-value histograms we retain enough information about the opcodes within a sample to classify the target architecture with high accuracy, and then discuss heuristic-based features that exploit information within the operands to determine endianness. We introduce a dataset with over 16000 code samples from 20 architectures and experimentally show that by using our features, classifiers can achieve very high accuracy with relatively small sample sizes.