Sandboxie is one of the most popular Windows-based sandbox isolation tool, which was acquired by Sophos in 2017 and later converted to free-to-use software, now the company has released the source code to the public.
While Sandboxie is a perfect example of how to integrate isolation tool with Windows at a very low level, and capable of running any Windows app that requires a secure virtual sandbox to run; the programs run in isolated space to prevent them from making permanent changes to other programs or modifying the data on your computer.
Also, the programs in Sandboxie can run as you do normally by visiting websites, downloading files and clicking on links. If in any case you encounter malware attack, you can simply shut down your PC and your system would still remain safe.
The Open Sourcing of Sandboxie
Sophos updated Sandboxie to version V5.33.3 for Windows 7, 8.1, and 10, while making available all the features reserved for commercial versions of Sandboxie free in that release, with the source code version 5.40.
The latest version of Sandboxie for Windows 7, 8.1 and 10 has been made available to the community, and no future updates will be made by the company, as all features have now been made completely free in this version. Any further improvements will need to be made through the open source community.
Sophos has scheduled the shut down of the community Sandboxie forum and the license server on June 1st 2020. As the open source release has no code to check for the license server, which was removed in the V5.31.1 release.
How to Compile the Sandboxie Source code?
Firstly, there are 3 steps to follow in building Sandboxie:
- Compilation of the source code
- Signing of the generated binaries (Required for the Driver)
- Creating the installer (Useful for initially performing tasks like installing the driver)
Then, start with the Readme.txt file in the root of the source code, but the main piece that is needed to compile the code is Microsoft Visual Studio 2015.
Albeit, the Community Version may build the source code but there are restrictions on the use of the binaries generated by this version. And there is a dependency on the Microsoft Windows Device Driver Kit 7.1.0, which link has been provided in the Readme.txt file.
For further information on how to compile the source code, you should refer to the Sandboxie official website.