shc creates a stripped binary executable version of the script
specified with -f on the command line.
The binary version will get a .x extension appended
and will usually be a bit larger in size than the original ascii code.
Generated C source code is saved in a file with the extension .x.c
If you supply an expiration date with the -e option the
compiled binary will refuse to run after the date specified.
The message "Please contact your provider" will be displayed instead.
This message can be changed with the -m option.
You can compile any kind of shell script, but you need to supply valid
-i, -x and -l options.
The compiled binary will still be dependent on the shell specified
in the first line of the shell code (i.e. #!/bin/sh), thus shc does not create
completely independent binaries.
shc itself is not a compiler such as cc, it rather encodes and
encrypts a shell script and generates C source code with the added expiration
capability. It then uses the system compiler to compile a stripped binary
which behaves exactly like the original script. Upon execution, the compiled binary
will decrypt and execute the code with the shell -c option.
Unfortunatelly, it will not give you any speed improvement as a real C program would.
shcs main purpose is to protect your shell scripts from modification or
inspection. You can use it if you wish to distribute your scripts but dont
want them to be easily readable by other people.