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Harden Up: Can We Break Your Password With Our GPUs?

Test Setup

Test Hardware
ProcessorIntel Core i5-2500K (Sandy Bridge), 3.3 GHz, LGA 1155, 6 MB Shared L3
MotherboardAsus P8P67 Deluxe
MemoryKingston Hyper-X 8 GB (2 x 4 GB) DDR3-1333 @ DDR3-1333, 1.5 V
Hard DriveSamsung 470 256 GB
GraphicsPalit GeForce GTX 460 1 GBAsus GeForce GTX 570 1.28 GBAMD Radeon HD 5870 1 GB
Power SupplySeasonic 760 W, 80 PLUS
System Software and Drivers
Operating SystemWindows 7 Ultimate 64-bit
DirectXDirectX 11
DriverNvidia 270.51Catalyst 11.4

Software
Visual Zip Password Recovery ProcessorVersion: 6.2
Advanced Archive Password RecoveryVersion: 4.53
Accent Zip Password RecoveryVersion: 2.01
Accent RAR Password RecoveryVersion: 2.01
Parallel Password RecoveryVersion: 1.6.0
WinZipVersion: 15.5 ProEncryption: Zip 2.0 (default), AES-128, AES-256Compression: No Compression, Zipx/PPMd (default), Zip/deflate
WinRARVersion: x64 4.00Encryption: AES-128Compression: Normal, Store

It's important to point out that WinZip offers three different encryption options: Zip 2.0, AES-128, and AES-256, along with several compression schemes. WinRAR is much simpler in that it only offers AES-128 encryption and different levels of the same compression scheme. I'm testing with several variations to show you how this affects the speed of password recovery.

  • jeff77789
    "While it would take a longer time to find a password made up of nine or 10 passwords, it's definitely doable between a few gaming buddies. "


    9 or 10 characters?
    Reply
  • jj463rd
    How about adding some extended ASCII codes to a password.
    Reply
  • ryandsouza
    "Think of this as generating every single combination of numbers that can be used to solve that same Sodoku puzzle, starting from an all zeros all the way through all nines. "

    Sudoku puzzles have numbers from 1 through 9!
    Reply
  • rpmrush
    This reminds me of Bitcoin GPU crunching. 6990s are favored right now. I wonder how many were sold specifically to Bitcoin miners? I tried it with my dual 6850s but the heat was rediculous. I didn't like the stress on my hardware so I gave up mining. I'm sure it's the same with password software. Maxing out your GPUs. Great for Winter, not Summer!
    Reply
  • mediv42
    I've always wondered about this: why don't they just code a delay into the decryption program, so you can't check a billion passwords a second?
    Reply
  • joshyboy82
    I like the scale, but in your small example (a,b,c) you were right and wrong at the same time. Based on your configuration 6 possibilities are correct, but because you tell someone that they can use A or B or C in the password doesn't stop them from choosing aaa, therefor the combination is 9, not 6. Otherwise, interesting article.
    Reply
  • acku
    9515787 said:
    "Think of this as generating every single combination of numbers that can be used to solve that same Sodoku puzzle, starting from an all zeros all the way through all nines. "

    Sudoku puzzles have numbers from 1 through 9!

    Fixed! Sorry. I usually play Sudoku variants. :)


    9515790 said:
    I like the scale, but in your small example (a,b,c) you were right and wrong at the same time. Based on your configuration 6 possibilities are correct, but because you tell someone that they can use A or B or C in the password doesn't stop them from choosing aaa, therefor the combination is 9, not 6. Otherwise, interesting article.

    I could understand that, but I left out that since I was trying to show a simple example of how permutations differ from combinations. As you pointed out, repetitions are allowed in passwords. I actually mention that in the sentence that follows in the next paragraph.
    Reply
  • webdev511
    Password Haystacks Yes Steve Gibson has already covered something like this. Passphrases with upper lower number and speical are the way to go. Yes, please avoid shortcuts.
    Reply
  • acku
    9515789 said:
    I've always wondered about this: why don't they just code a delay into the decryption program, so you can't check a billion passwords a second?

    It wouldn't be easy from a design standpoint, cause now you're talking about fiddling with the design of the program.

    The easiest way to slow down the verification portion of the password authentication process is increasing the number of transformation invocations for key generation. The problem is that this slows down the performance of your machine, even if you have the correct password.

    jj463rdHow about adding some extended ASCII codes to a password.
    That assumes WinZip and WinRAR supports them. To be honest, I haven't looked into that. Though, I'm inclined to believe that neither program supports them.
    Reply
  • shin0bi272
    the tables in this review are horrible... they go from lengths of time to number of passwords and theres no discernible notation when they do.
    Reply