VMK technical curiosities

ElectricLime

As seen on VMK
Joined
Jun 28, 2005
I was curious what makes VMK tick, so I did a little snooping. You might find this interesting. Or you might not. ;)

First off: when you're in a game, do a "save as" in your web browser to save the "Disney's Virtual Magic Kingdom" HTML file to your desktop. Then open the file in Notepad or TextEdit or any other text editor. You'll know you have the right file if you see it start off looking like this:

<HTML>
<HEAD>
<TITLE>Disney's Virtual Magic Kingdom</TITLE>
<script type="text/javascript" language="javascript">
Now, the interesting part of the file is near the bottom where it tells the page to load a Shockwave app (which is the game). Note the line that gives a URL for external.variables.txt. Go ahead and load external_variables_276 in your web browser. The number at the end of that will increment every now and then (it'll probably already be higher by the time you read this), but any number you use will always load the latest version for the current moment, so the number's not all that important.

The page that loads contains lots of variable information for VMK, stuff that could change periodically. Points of interest include a listing of all the rooms in the game and the redemption prices of all the items you can sell back to the store to get money from them.

Now - look at the bottom of the external variables file; it lists other files which get loaded. Two of these are interesting:

- external_texts_170 - (Again, the number doesn't matter; it increments occasionally, but any number will get you the latest one.) This file contains all of the English-language text used in the game, including the name of every item the game knows about. This list has been posted before on this board, but now you know how to get it yourself. If you save a copy of this file, then a few days or weeks later you get a new copy of this file and compare it with the old one, you can see things that have changed. For example, now you get 5 credits back when you delete a photo. And recently the Fantasyland Castle (2/9) pin has become Fantasyland Castle Retro Pin, the Golden Horseshoe Saddle Seats have lost the Golden Horseshoe part of their name, and a bunch of Hong Kong-themed pins and clothing have appeared (six pins and some posters, pullovers, and T-shirts).

- dictionary_47 - This lists all of the base words that the game allows, along with some flags for each word saying what forms it can take. (The flags appear to be standard ispell suffix format, as documented here.) I am guessing that when you type and receive messages, the game communicates with the central server not literally but with indexes to this list, which has two consequences: it's physically impossible to use language not in the dictionary; and if (by some glitch) your copy of the dictionary is slightly older than the one the server is using, stuff will show up as gibberish (more so for words closer to Z). For example, someone recently posted a screenshot of the mail they saw when they logged on: "Got seats codes, Enter theirs now to free Vmk looto Too users onefor click on thats Chair Icon too open youve Studies menufor click on Codes tab and ty in that code' Youd receive a message and youve items wildly appear in thats Studies menu'"

That's all I've got for now. Yes, I'm a geek. :)
 

JeanJoe

<font color=red>VMK Community Leader!</font color>
Joined
Apr 27, 2005
LOL, I wondered why it had taken so long for somebody to post this.

A little while ago, I did a text compare from a dictionary from early in beta to one more recently, and was a little dismayed to find that the majority of changes were *removal* of words, and addition of Kellogg's cereal names, and not much more. So much for those dozens of words suggestions I and many others made.

One thing that I've wondered from months ago, though, is why the number at the end doesn't seem to matter. Go ahead and enter a huge number, and it will still load the same page.

I think the EULA can't prevent us from looking at it. Using the info to try to reverse engineer and write scripts, however, would certainly get you in hot water though.
 

ElectricLime

As seen on VMK
Joined
Jun 28, 2005
LOL, I wondered why it had taken so long for somebody to post this.
Whups, I hadn't realized - was this common knowledge? Here I was all proud for working it out...

I'm guessing the number at the end doesn't matter because they don't want older versions of the files to be available at all; there'd be no point to their presence and they might cause problems. But the numbers are still used so the admins can check their web logs and see what version of the files a client thinks it's trying to load.
 
  • JeanJoe

    <font color=red>VMK Community Leader!</font color>
    Joined
    Apr 27, 2005
    No, no -- not at all common knowledge. Some people knew how and distributed the source code, mostly privately. I was just one of the lucky recipients and had fun doing text processing on the dictionary and item lists. Thanks for spelling it out :)

    And your explanation for the number makes perfect sense, too.

    Edited to add: and with your help, getting a more recent dictionary, I realize that they actually DID add a few dozen new words, so I'll have to retract the statement about them not adding words as well. Thanks again. Guess I'll try to get around to updating the complete word list post at some point.


    ElectricLime said:
    Whups, I hadn't realized - was this common knowledge? Here I was all proud for working it out...

    I'm guessing the number at the end doesn't matter because they don't want older versions of the files to be available at all; there'd be no point to their presence and they might cause problems. But the numbers are still used so the admins can check their web logs and see what version of the files a client thinks it's trying to load.
     

    LisaInNc

    Succulent Wild Woman
    Joined
    Feb 18, 2005
    So can one of you Awesome people figure out how much the magic carpet pin is going to cost??

    That was all way over my head. What I know about computers is off/on and that is about it.
     
  • Antelope

    Pin_Man
    Joined
    Aug 9, 2005
    I think I got about half of all that. I don't know how to use a word processor the right way.

    How about just telling us what new words WERE added? That's what I would be interested in. I'm quite curious. :) :) :) ;)
     

    cami89

    <font color="red">Mouseketeer<br><font color="gree
    Joined
    Aug 26, 2004
    My head is spinning :eek: - too. much. technical. talk.

    Seriously though - I'm envious at your computer savvy.

    Now tell me, is there a way to save the fireworks game to my hard drive? How cool would it be to play whenever you wanted?!?!
     

    magicmouse2

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    May 15, 2003
    pirate: There will probably be a pirated version out there somewhere or in the works, just as they did with Toontown.
     

    JeanJoe

    <font color=red>VMK Community Leader!</font color>
    Joined
    Apr 27, 2005
    Here you go, near the top, before the full list. I had actually posted the re-vamped full list yesterday, after using ElectricLime's tips for getting a new dictionary list. The new words were NOT generated by a text compare (I was too lazy, even though it's pretty trivial). VMK tends to add new words to the end of the list, so all I did was copy those over. I have tested some of them (it's great to be able to say hmm when you are stalling ;) ) but not all the "new" ones.

    Antelope said:
    How about just telling us what new words WERE added? That's what I would be interested in. I'm quite curious. :) :) :) ;)
     
  • Stevostitch

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Sep 30, 2005
    Thank you so much! I have wondered where that information was located for quite some time but felt too stupid to ask, or thought those who knew would want it to be a secret so they can feel smart lol! This is very useful information! VERY COOL! Thanks for being the "geek" you are lol! Nothing wrong with that!
     

    CoolTrainerTerry

    DIS Veteran
    Joined
    Nov 25, 2005
    Okay, I noticed a few Disney character's names in there.
    item.2035=Cinderella
    item.2039=Aladdin
    item.27=Lumiere...and so on.
    Is it just pictures on items or items, like the Lumiere item?
     

    LilLisaLou

    Mouseketeer
    Joined
    Jul 15, 2005
    I'm just curious and don't really understand half of what was written there. I know how to turn on a computer and use a few programs. Nothing too fancy.

    So, is this how the hacker people find out all the items that are going to be offered or did I miss an official VMK page that shows everything?
     

    SkippyPaul

    Nascar VMK Centerfold -February-
    Joined
    Mar 10, 2006
    Hi fellow vmk'ers
    I have searched the boards and am fairly new, but this seems like the place to ask a technical question about vmk.
    We recently got a new laptop..with windows xp. I did ask my parents this question but they have this sort of " deer in the headlights look"...(gotta love them).
    When we are in vmk the window with the friends list and message board is so so small that we can barely type in it. Does anyone know how to enlarge this? I hope it is a simple solution or it might make my parents break down and cry lol. The font here on my tool bar is very small too.
    Please help if you can.
    Thank you so much
     

    disvaclub92

    Always dreaming about Disney
    Moderator
    Joined
    Aug 29, 2000
    If you go to Settings Control Panel and Display then Settings - you can increase the font size on your screen.

    Good Luck!!
     

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