Cool Syntax and Weird Documentation - Fun with Scapy

This post is a few years old now, so some details (or my opinions) might be out of date.
I would still love to hear your feedback in the comments below. Enjoy!

I was looking for a way to parse TCP/IP packets in Python, when a friend recommended Scapy. Scapy is a nice python package that’s got a very cool interface using the “div” operator, and is used like so:

packet = IP()/TCP()/"GET / HTTP/1.0\r\n\r\n"
str(packet) # returns the packet's binary data 

which is pretty cool and creative. It makes the layers concept pretty visual. Now, I was looking for a way to parse packets, i.e., the other way around. So we were looking in scapy’s documentation. The section on “dissecting” seemed like it might be what we wanted, and here’s the introduction:

Dissecting

Layers are only list of fields, but what is the glue between each field, and after, between each layer. These are the mysteries explain in this section.

I ended up not needing to parse packets, but I did use it to generate TCP/IP packets, and I gotta say, it couldn’t be any easier. Go on, check it out. Their documentation also teaches Python.

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