Top 10 Password Crackers
After the tremendously successful 2000 and 2003
security tools surveys, Insecure.Org is delighted to
release this 2006 survey. I (Fyodor) asked users
from the nmap-hackers
mailing list to share their favorite tools, and 3,243 people
responded. This allowed me to expand the list to 100 tools, and even
subdivide them into categories. This is the category page for password crackers -- the full network security list is available here. Anyone in the security field
would be well advised to go over the list and investigate tools they
are unfamiliar with. I discovered several powerful new tools this
way. I also point newbies to this site whenever they write
me saying “I don't know where to start”.
Respondents were allowed to list open source or commercial tools on
any platform. Commercial tools are noted as such in the list below.
No votes for the Nmap Security
Scanner were counted because the survey was taken on a Nmap
mailing list. This audience also biases the list slightly
toward “attack” hacking tools rather than defensive ones.
Each tool is described by one ore more attributes:
|Did not appear on the 2003 list|
|Generally costs money. A free limited/demo/trial version may be available.|
|Works natively on Linux|
|Works natively on OpenBSD, FreeBSD, Solaris, and/or other UNIX variants|
|Works natively on Apple Mac OS X|
|Works natively on Microsoft Windows|
|Features a command-line interface|
|Offers a GUI (point and click) interface|
|Source code available for inspection.|
Please send updates and suggestions (or better tool logos) to Fyodor. If your tool is featured or you think your site visitors might enjoy this list, you are welcome to use our link banners.
Here is the list, starting with the most popular:
John the Ripper : A powerful, flexible, and fast multi-platform password hash cracker|
John the Ripper is a fast password cracker, currently available for many flavors of Unix (11 are officially supported, not counting different architectures), DOS, Win32, BeOS, and OpenVMS. Its primary purpose is to detect weak Unix passwords. It supports several crypt(3) password hash types which are most commonly found on various Unix flavors, as well as Kerberos AFS and Windows NT/2000/XP LM hashes. Several other hash types are added with contributed patches. You will want to start with some wordlists, which you can find here, here, or here.
THC Hydra : A Fast network authentication cracker which supports many different services|
When you need to brute force crack a remote authentication service, Hydra is often the tool of choice. It can perform rapid dictionary attacks against more then 30 protocols, including telnet, ftp, http, https, smb, several databases, and much more. Like THC Amap this release is from the fine folks at THC.
L0phtcrack : Windows password auditing and recovery application|
L0phtCrack attempts to crack Windows passwords from hashes which it can obtain (given proper access) from stand-alone Windows workstations, networked servers, primary domain controllers, or Active Directory. In some cases it can sniff the hashes off the wire. It also has numerous methods of generating password guesses (dictionary, brute force, etc). LC5 was discontinued by Symantec in 2006, then re-acquired by the original L0pht guys and reborn as LC6 in 2009. For free alternatives, consider Ophcrack, Cain and Abel, or John the Ripper.
Pwdump : A window password recovery tool|
Pwdump is able to extract NTLM and LanMan hashes from a Windows target, regardless of whether Syskey is enabled. It is also capable of displaying password histories if they are available. It outputs the data in L0phtcrack-compatible form, and can write to an output file.
RainbowCrack : An Innovative Password Hash Cracker|
The RainbowCrack tool is a hash cracker that makes use of a large-scale time-memory trade-off. A traditional brute force cracker tries all possible plaintexts one by one, which can be time consuming for complex passwords. RainbowCrack uses a time-memory trade-off to do all the cracking-time computation in advance and store the results in so-called "rainbow tables". It does take a long time to precompute the tables but RainbowCrack can be hundreds of times faster than a brute force cracker once the precomputation is finished.
Brutus : A network brute-force authentication cracker|
This Windows-only cracker bangs against network services of remote systems trying to guess passwords by using a dictionary and permutations thereof. It supports HTTP, POP3, FTP, SMB, TELNET, IMAP, NTP, and more. No source code is available. UNIX users should take a look at THC Hydra.
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