Exactly 21 years ago: “CRACK: A Sensible Unix Password Cracker”

How to make several other people feel much older than I actually do – muahahahaha…

This was version 2.7; the shit really went down hard when v3.2+fcrypt was posted on August 23rd 1991; but that’s another story.

Happy memories. 🙂

From: aem@aber.ac.uk (Alec David Muffett)
Newsgroups: alt.sources,alt.security
Subject: CRACK: A Sensible Unix Password Cracker
Keywords: password des encryption unix frisbee
Message-ID: <1991Jul15.183637.6511@aber.ac.uk>
Date: 15 Jul 91 18:36:37 GMT
Followup-To: alt.security
Organization: University College of Wales, Aberystwyth
Lines: 1622

"Crack" (with a capital C) is a program I have been developing over the past 18 months, in parallel with some major mucking about that I've been doing to the crypt() function. Crack takes a 'sensible' approach to searching for dictionary or user-related passwords, and produces a report not dis-similar to that generated by COPS' "pass.c".

It has been tested and works without mods on Ultrix 3.x and Ultrix 4.x, and SunOS 4.x, although in order for it to drop easily onto other machines I have crippled a few functions a little: see "PROGS/crack.h" for options that you can #define to get a little speed back.

It does nothing particularly clever other than to do things in a orderly manner and do them quickly, and therefore I have no qualms about releasing this software to the net. There are many other optimisations that could be done to the code (replacing malloc(), etc, springs to mind), but for portability I have not done so to the first release.
Please let me know how you get on.

INET: aem@aber.ac.uk JANET: aem@uk.ac.aber BITNET: aem%aber@ukacrl
UUCP: ...!mcsun!ukc!aber!aem ARPA: aem%uk.ac.aber@nsfnet-relay.ac.uk
SNAIL: Alec Muffett, Computer Unit, Llandinam UCW, Aberystwyth, UK, SY23 3DB

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