Hacking

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An immensely useful skill to get into areas you aren't supposed to and discover new things.

Gear

To hack things successfully, you will need to secure a few items first. Not all of these are essential, specially for some kinds of hacking, but having the full set can be pretty helpful

  • Screwdriver - Any hackable item needs to have its wires first exposed by using the Screwdriver.
  • Multitool - Although you can cut wires with the Wirecutter, there are a few functions you can't get without pulsing wires with the Multitool, like getting the door bolts to go up.
  • Wirecutters - Wirecutters have a somewhat different effect in wires than the Multitool. Although they are more plentifull, they can sometimes put the hacked item in a situation that can't be fixed without a Multitool. Still, some things, like electrifying a door permanently, are impossible without the Wirecutters. Wirecutters are used for both cutting and mending wires.
  • Insulated Gloves - Many items may be hacked to shock whoever use it, or even stand near it. If you trigger this by mistake, and you don't have Insulated Gloves, you may be out for a while.
  • Crowbar - Crowbars are good for getting powered down airlocks open, although they aren't really necessary for hacking.
  • Remote Signaling Device - After you open their cover with the Screwdriver, you can attach the Remote Signaling Device to an airlock wire, which will pulse the wire (Like a Multitool) if a Remote Signaling Device with the same frequency and code is used! Allowing you to remotely bolt doors among other things.
    • This will not work in reverse! Opening a door will NOT trigger a Remote Signaling Device attached to the "open door" wire. Use the Mechanic's wireless components instead.

Wires

Wires all control different functions of an object, for instance in a door, one will control electrification, another for bolts, etc. These are randomized each round, but are the same across all of that object during the round. Of course, wires in vending machines are different from wires in doors, for example, but all vending machines in a round will have wires that work the same.

Doors

There are 8 possible wire functions on a door:

Function Explanation Effect When Pulsed Effect When Cut
Main Power This provides power to the door. A door without power won't open by itself, but it can be opened with a crowbar, if it isn't bolted. The test-light is an indicator if an airlock has power or not. Power fails for a minute or so. Main power is cut until cable is mended.
Backup Power It will pick up the slack if the main power fails, coming online again after about 10 seconds. Note that both power sources depend on the APC supplying them with energy. The backup power fails for a minute or so. Note that if the primary power is online, the test light won't even blink. The backup power is cut until the cables are mended.
ID Scan This is the id scan functionality of an airlock. If it is offline in a restricted door, it won't open for anyone, except robots and AI. If it is offline in a public door, the airlock won't open if handled, but will still open if you try to walk against them. The Id refused lights blinks. The ID scanner will go offline until the cables are mended.
Door Open This wire controls the opening of the door. If the door is public, it opens immediately. If it isn't, it will only open if the ID Scan is offline. The door won't open any more.
Bolts This controls the door bolts. A bolted airlock will remain closed or open until it is unbolted, and not even the crowbar is enough to move it. It is clear from the hacking interface if the bolts are up or not. Note that the bolts can fall if the door has no power, but they can't be retracted in that state! It toggles the bolts, either raising or dropping them. The bolts drop. Mending the cable will do nothing. This is one of the main reasons a multitool is necessary for hacking.
AI Control This cable asserts that cyborgs and the AI have access to the door implicitly. If this is disabled, the AI can do nothing to the door, and cyborgs will need to interact with it, like humans. The AI control light shows whether this is on or off. The AI control goes offline for a few seconds. The AI control goes offline until the cable is mended.
Safety Sensor This wire starts off already cut. If it is repaired, the SS comes online, preventing the door from closing when a creature or person is in the doorway Forces the door to close, even if the is a mob in the doorway The SS goes offline; the door can be closed, even if the is a mob in the doorway.
Electrify Electrified doors will shock people that try to open or interact with it in anyway, unless they are using insulated gloves. The door becomes electrified for a few seconds (around 30). The door becomes electrified until the wires are mended.

You may notice, however, that doors have 10 cables. The remaining two wires are also for backup power, but the power-checking code is bugged, so they have no function. Consider them as an added challenge to finding the right wire.

Quick Guide

Before you go after whatever door you actually want to hack through, you need to find a door that you can break without anyone minding too much - just go into maintenance and pick one.

Beware that if you are hacking doors without insulating gloves (or SMES Human or some other kind of electricity immunity), pulsing the electrify wire can result in you being shocked, potentially to death. If the maintenance window is still open, BYOND will recognise this as you keeping your hands on the wire, so close the window to prevent yourself from becoming something akin to the chef's smoldering mess.

On your Test Door.

  • Screwdriver to open the panel.
  • Multitool/Wirecutters to test the wires.
  • Pulse or cut all the wires, noting which one controls what. All you really need to know is bolts, but if you can figure out the main power wire, you can hack the door in a "cleaner" way - after 30 seconds or so the backup power will come online and nobody will be the wiser.
  • Done.

On your Target Door, to pass through:

  • Screwdriver to open the panel.
  • Pulse/Cut either all the wires EXCEPT bolts, or just main power, depending on how much you know about the wires and what you're planning to do.
  • Crowbar to open the door.
  • Optional - Crowbar again to close.
  • Optional - Screwdriver again to close the maintenance hatch.

You can also wedge a door permanently open. Be warned that this is suspicious and if you are not an antagonist then you are leaving the door open for someone who is.

  • Screwdriver to open the panel.
  • Cut ID Scan and AI Control.
  • Pulse Door Open.
  • Cut Bolts.


Note: Doors that are operational, but have a maintenance hatch that is open cannot be "bumped" or clicked to open, even with the correct access. You need to grab your ID and use it on the door for it to open. lots of people don't know that so grab a screwdriver and go wild

Vending Machines and Fabricators

Vending machines have 4 wires and 4 lights on them. Just like with airlocks, the function of each wire is randomized each round, but the same for all vending machines:

Function Explanation Effect When Pulsed Effect When Cut
Authorization A few of the machines in the station require authorization. These won't work unless you have the right id to use them, like the sec dispenser and the medbay dispenser. But this security system is controlled by one of the cables, and can be bypassed. The purple light will become yellow if such is done. Note that messing with this system on a non restricted vendor does nothing. Pulsing this cable does nothing. As long as the cables are cut, the system will be offline, allowing anyone to use the machine.
Hidden Items A few of the vendors have items inside them that don't show up in the normal menu. Valuechimp, for example, holds 100 bananas inside it. This system is represented by the green light, which will go on if the items are unlocked. Note that some machines have no hidden items. It toggles the green light, either allowing or forbidding the purchase of hidden items. The green light goes off, no matter what it was before. Mending it won't restore it either, so you need a multitool to access the items.
Electrify Just like doors, vending machines can be electrified. When they are, the orange light will go on. Electrifies the machine for a little while (about 30 seconds). Note that pulsing again doesn't cancel it. It just extends the duration. Cutting the cables will electrify it until they are mended. Note that cutting the cables and then mending will cancel a pulse electrification.
Functionality This cable, associated to the red blinking light, determines if the machine will work correctly. If the light isn't blinking, the machine will malfunction, throwing items on people randomly. Toggles the lights blinking/off. Turn the lights off until mended.

Fabricators are similar:


Function Explanation Effect When Pulsed Effect When Cut
Disk Access One of the cables control the possibility of clearing the uploaded schematics of an fabricator. It is represented by a light that can be either red, or green. If it is green, you can clear the schematics from the disk. Note that schematics seem to no longer be used in the game. Switches the light between green and red. Makes the light go red. Mending won't make the light green, but you can then pulse it.
Hidden Items A few of the fabricator have items inside them that don't show up in the normal menu, like the bike horn in the one near the QM. This system is represented by the white light, which will go on if the items are unlocked. It toggles the white light, either allowing or forbidding the purchase of hidden items. The white light goes off, no matter what it was before. Mending it won't restore it either, so you need a multitool to access the items.
Electrify Works just like the vending machines, but the light is yellow. Electrifies the machine for a little while (about 30 seconds). Note that pulsing again doesn't cancel it. It just extends the duration. Cutting the cables will electrify it until they are mended. Note that cutting the cables and then mending will cancel a pulse electrification.
Functionality This cable, associated to the blue light, determines if the machine will work correctly. If the light starts flashing, the machine will malfunction, working more slowly and making awful grinding noises. Toggles the lights flashing/on. Makes the lights flash until the cables are mended.

Quick Guide

You need a multitool to hack vendors and fabricators without screwing them up

  • Screwdriver
  • Multitool (Trying to use the multitool itself on the thing will just result in you hitting it, click with an empty hand and the window with the wires will pop up underneath the regular menu, then switch to the multitool again)
  • Pulse wires until they're all green, blinking, or on
  • Screwdriver
  • Look at the menu to make sure the extra items are showing up
  • You can use wirecutters to get the extra items, but usually this results in the machine running really slowly and electrocuting anyone touching it so don't do this unless you're desperate

You can also cut wires to make vending machines launch products at people, and/or electrocute them! For extra fun, forcefeed someone a lot of booze and then cut all the wires in the limeaid vendor!

APCs

APCs have four wires, although two wires are identical. Unlike other devices, APC wires can be bitten, which acts the same as wirecutters - but remember that if you don't have the real thing, you can't mend them again. Killing the power to an APC also automatically kills the power for doors and cameras. Meaning you can use this as a faster means for door hacking if you don't plan on using any powered devices for a short period. Although people may not like the power for their room suddenly shutting off.

Function Explanation Effect When Pulsed Effect When Cut
Lock Most APCs on the station start locked, meaning they can't be controlled by humans until they're unlocked. An authorised ID, like the Mechanic or Captain's, can be swiped on the APC to unlock controls. Or you could hack it. Note that this is not the cover lock, which controls whether or not the APC can be crowbarred open. Temporarily unlocks the APC. Doesn't seem to do anything.
Functionality There are two of these wires, which control the APC's ability to supply power to the room. If this is disrupted, all the APC's outputs (environment, equipment, lighting) get stuck on 'off'. Shorts out the APC's power temporarily. Shorts out the APC's power. Mending the wire restores power.
AI control This cable asserts that cyborgs and the AI have access to the door implicitly. If this is disabled, the AI can do nothing to the door, and cyborgs will need to interact with it, like humans. The AI control light shows whether this is on or off. The AI control goes offline for a few seconds. The AI control goes offline until the cable is mended.

Quick Guide

You need a multitool to hack vendors and fabricators without screwing them up

  • Screwdriver
  • Multitool (Trying to use the multitool itself on the APC will just result in you hitting it, click with an empty hand and the window with the wires will pop up underneath the regular menu, then switch to the multitool again)
  • Pulse each wire until you find the unlock wire.
  • Do whatever you need to.
  • If you accidentally short it out, cut and mend the wire that you just pulsed.