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Verifying the legitmacy of programs with PowerShell cmdlets

If you need to verify the authenticity or legimacy of a program on a Microsoft Windows system, e.g., if you need to check whether the program has remained unaltered since it was provided by the developer or check that it came from the developer it is purportedly from, you can use Windows PowerShell cmdlets to give you a greater degree of confidence.

Oftentimes a developer website will list a cryptographic hash code for a file. The cryptographic hash code allows you to verify that a program that you have on a system is an unaltered copy of the program as it was delivered by the developer, since changing even a single character/byte in a file will result in a different hash code being calculated for the file when it is checked by a program that can calculate hash codes for files. To calculate a cryptographic hash code for a file, you can use a program like md5sum or, on a Microsoft Windows system, you can obtain a SHA-256 hash code value for a file from a Windows PowerShell prompt using the Get-AppLockerFileInformation cmdlet.

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