[OFF-TOPIC] Re: [ADMIN] Unix passords and cracking

From: Ole Gjerde (gjerde@plains.nodak.edu)
Date: 09/19/96

On Wed, 18 Sep 1996, Ron Hensley wrote:
> > and UNIX passwords are _IMPOSSIBLE_ to crack. (I know, you have heard the same
> > bullshit I have about someone claiming they can crack them)i. A person would
> > have a greater chance guessing a passwd than cracking it. (not the same BTW)
> You HAVE to be joking. Ever heard of the program Crack, freely available
> anywhere on the internet? Take your /etc/passwd file and run it under
> crack one time my friend. Wher eI work we have 3000 users. Dude, it broke 
> 300 passwords. Weve sinced moved to shadow passwords, and randomly chosen
> garbage passwords, but still.
> Uncrakable? I think not.

This has mostly to do with what you mean with "crackable", but with 
"cracking" I(and most other people I think) mean to actually reverse the 
encryption on the password in some way.  This is definately not possible 
with passwords in unix. 
They are indeed uncrackable.  But they are absolutely not unguessable.  
All Crack does is guessing passwords and see if they are the same.  
Doesn't have much to do with cracking except in the name of the program.. 


Ole Gjerde
Homepage: http://www.pconline.com/~gjerde
Email: gjerde@plains.nodak.edu, gjerde@pconline.com
Studying Computer Science at North Dakota State University
"Unix _IS_ user friendly... It's just selective about who its friends are."
                                                  -- Unknown/Nem Schlecht

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