John the Ripper Pt.1


John The Ripper, or John for short, is one of the most well known password and hash cracking tools out there. John is extremely versatile, most importantly, it is extremely fast, with a really big range of compatible types of hashes, not just the most common ones like SHA1, SHA256, MD5, etc. It is also worth mentioning that John will work on all of the three most common operating systems – Windows, MacOS, and Linux-based distros. For Windows, there’s also the Hash Suite, developed by a John the Ripper Contributor. 


Hashing, most simply put, is the act of taking a piece of data (of any length) and representing it in another shape, that is of fixed length. We do so by passing our original data through an algorithm – hashing algorithm. Some more popular examples are: NTLM, MD4, SHA512.

As an example, take my name  – acephale as an input string and pass it through a SHA256 algorithm, and we get the following string of characters:

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