Password Cracker

Introducing Hashcat: The World’s Fastest Password Recovery Tool

in Hacking

Hashcat is an established password cracker that is considered the world’s fastest CPU-based password recovery tool.

In this article, you will be introduced to Hashcat and how it works.

Password Recovery

Passwords are a string of letters, numbers, or symbols used for the authentication process in various applications. We use them to gain access and also restrict unauthorized entry into accounts, applications, and databases.

However, what if you forget your password? How do you restore it? That is what makes a password cracking tools like Hashcat useful and important to understand.

What is Hashcat?

password recovery

Hashcat is known as the fastest and most advanced password recovery tool capable of cracking extremely complex passwords. It is highly versatile and fast, giving it an edge over other password cracking tools.

Jens ‘atom’ Steube and Gabriele ‘matrix’ Gristina developed the software.

Hashcat is open-sourced, free and cracks passwords using GPU cracking or CPU cracking. It is available for Linux, OS X, and Windows systems.

What Does Hashcat Support?

Hashcat supports a large variety of hashing algorithms, such as:

  • MD4,
  • MD5,
  • SHA-family,
  • NT Hash,
  • LM hash,
  • Unix Crypt formats,
  • MySQL,
  • RipeMD,
  • Cisco PIX
  • and SHA family.

It also offers several attack modes, including:

  • Toggle-Case attack
  • Fingerprint attack
  • Rule-based attack
  • Combinator attack
  • Brute-force attack
  • Dictionary attack
  • Mask attack
  • Table-Lookup attack
  • Hybrid attack
  • Permutation attack
  • and PRINCE attack.

How Hashcat Works

Hashcat uses rainbow tables, precomputed dictionaries, and a brute-force approach to find an adequate way to crack passwords.

The software can convert readable information into a scrambled sequence, which could be used to crack passwords. The program uses a technique known as a brute force in direct cracking. 

You can download Hashcat online and use it to obtain lost passwords through multiple processes. It’s quite easy to set up because it comes along with a user-friendly guide that illustrates step-by-step how to use the program.

Some of its features include:

  • Compatible with well-know operating systems (Linux, Windows and OSX native binaries)
  • Multi-threaded and the threads have the ability to be configured and executed and used based on the lowest priority
  • Supports hex-salt, hex-charset, and automatic performance tuning
  • Allows reading of password candidates from file and stdin
  • Free and open source

Hashcat is a great tool for password recovery. However, malicious hackers also use it for nefarious purposes.

To ensure you are not an easy victim of a password hack, always make your password long and complex. Additionally, avoid using obvious information about yourself. Finally, you should also change your passwords regularly.

Top 10 Most Popular Password Cracker Tools in 2020

in Hacking
password cracker

There are several reasons why people want to crack a password. The main legitimate reason to use a password cracker to try to recover your password. However, password guesser tools are mainly used by black hat hackers to gain unauthorized access to a system.

In recent years, several password cracker tools have emerged. Each tool has its own unique features. This article shares ten of the most popular password cracking tools in 2020.

Top Password Cracker and Guesser Tools

password guesser


Brutus is one of the most popular online remote tools to crack passwords. Released in 2000, it is one of the fastest and most flexible password cracking tools. It is available for Windows, which supports HTTP (HTML Form/CGI), Pop3, FTP, HTTP (for Basic Authentication), Telent, and more. It also gives room for one to create his own type of authentication.

This tool is capable of connecting with 60 targets and can also support multi-stage authentication engines. It has a unique feature that halts and resumes the attack process at any chosen time. However, this tool has not been updated for a number of years now, but it is still open for use.


RainbowCrack is a free hash cracker tool available for Linux and Windows. It employs the use of a rainbow table when cracking a password by employing a hash algorithm to calculate hash pairs and plain text. The results it generates is in a rainbow table. This process is time-consuming but can be repeated over and over once the table is ready. Once the rainbow table exists, the program can crack passwords faster than another brute force using the tool.


Known as a password cracking tool that cracks passwords using brute force, Wfuzz can identify different kinds of injections in Web applications. Some of these injection includes LDAP Injection, XSS Injection, and SQL Injection. This tool is multi-threading; it provides multiple proxy support and can also be used to find hidden resources such as servlets, scripts, and directories.

Wfuzz features include SOCK and Proxy support, multi-threading, fuzzing of cookies, and the capability of injecting via multiple dictionaries with multiple points.

THC Hydra

THC Hydra is prominent because of its fast-paced network logon password cracking feature. It has proven to be faster than other similar hacking tools. With this tool, it is easy to install and enhance the features of the modules.

It is available for Solaris, Free BSD, Linux, OS X, and Windows systems. Also, it supports a wide range of network protocols like LDAP, Oracle SID, Firebird, HTTP-FORM-GET, MYSQL, Telnet, HTTPS-FORM-POST, Rexec, SOCKS5, XMPP, MS-SQL, SNMP, Cisco AAA, SAP’s R3, HTTP-PROXY, My(SQL), Afp, Icq, XMPP & VNC, SSH v1 & v2, Oracle’s Listener, etc.


Aircrack-NG is a WiFi password cracking tool that is capable of cracking WPA or WEP passwords. The software attempts to crack passwords by cracking its algorithm after analyzing the wireless encrypted packets. It uses the FMS attack as well as a combination of other helpful attack methods for cracking a password. Aircrack-NG is available for Linux and Windows.

Cain and Abel

Known mostly for its ability to handle an assortment of tasks, Cain and Abel is a program for security professionals, network administrators penetration testers and forensic staff. It is a cracking tool that acts as a sniffer, cracks encrypted passwords using a dictionary attack, decodes scrambled passwords, applies brute attacks, record VoIP conversations, analyzes routing protocols, reveals password boxes, carries out cryptanalysis attack, and uncovers cached passwords. It is available only for Windows.

John the Ripper

It is a free, open-source tool functional for cracking passwords for Mac OS, UNIX, and Linux. You can detect vulnerable passwords using this password cracking tool. The pro-version offers better features as well as a package for the target OS.


Similar to THC Hydra, Medusa is a modular, brute force applying and speedy parallel cracking tool. It supports Telnet, HTTP, pcAnywhere, SMB, FTP, NCP, POP3, CVS, VmAuthd, MS SQL, etc. While performing password cracking, the host, username, and password are the flexible input.

Medusa is a command-line tool, which means it requires a high level of knowledge of computer programming. The efficiency of the tool is dependant upon the connectivity of the network.


Available for just Windows, Mac and Linux system, OphCrack is a free open-source rainbow-table based password cracking tool program that uses LM and NTLM hashes to crack Windows login passwords through rainbow tables.


L0phtCrack is a password recovery tool that can test the strength of a password. It tries to crack Windows passwords from hashes while utilizing active directory, primary domain controllers, network server and workstations (windows). Moreover, it introduces the use of brute force, rainbow tables, dictionary attack and hybrid attacks in generating and guessing passwords.

Passwords protect a wide range of information and personal, sensitive data from unauthorized access. But they could often be vulnerable. There are a number of things you can do to ensure that your password can’t be easily cracked. Some of the precautions to take include using a long, complex password, enable login screen warning messages, not disclosing your password, and not using the same password on multiple accounts.

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