in my modest experience with windows, several times i tried to open an executable in notepad.
every single time, i saw the same thing in the first few lines:
..º..´.Í!¸.LÍ!This program cannot be run in DOS mode....$...
some junk, then this phrase then some junk.
if this has any meaning, it means that an executable file starts with some Operating-System specific code.
so an executable isn't just the assembly code for your program, it contains other things.
i think debuggers do this task, and there's also Cheat Engine
cheat engine is specialized in cracking an executable and manipulating its inner workings, it was first designed to cheat computer games, but it can actually crack any executable (not sure if it works on AVs).
is the term "decompile" accurate in this context ?
i thought this operation was called "disassemble".