Hashcat is a universal password recovery tool that exploits vulnerabilities in hashing algorithms (SHA, Unix Crypt, PIX Cisco, MySQL, etc.). The main feature of this utility is that it not only supports "direct brute force", i.e. brute-forcing passwords one-by-one, but also breaking them by generating them according to user-defined parameters. The program is part of Kali Linux
and is one of the most popular tools for cracking passwords to Wi-Fi (supporting WPA and WPA2 encryption modes, WPA3 is to be added in the future).
Peculiarities of Hashcat
- using both CPU and GPU computing power (AMD, Nvidia, Intel, necessarily with proprietary drivers installed, OpnenCL is used);
- simultaneous use of both CPU and GPU (even if the PC has multiple graphics cards);
- fine adjustment of system load (CPU or graphics card);
- enabling distributed password cracking (when multiple PCs are combined into a single system);
- using a combined attack (when the password decryption algorithm changes and multiple algorithms are used simultaneously to compute it).
The program is available for Windows, Linux (including ARM distributions) and MacOS. Since 2015 it is open source (guarantees absence of malicious code). There is no graphical interface in the official release. That is, Hashcat for Windows and other operating systems is released without GUI (but there are many unofficial plugins that add it), interaction with the utility is performed through the terminal (in Windows - through the command line).
Who needs it
Hashcat is good for cracking and breaking WPA/WPA2 passwords (for connecting to Wi-Fi hotspots), accessing encrypted MS Office, 7-Zip and RAR files.
Download Hashcat the latest version for free on our site. It now includes such components as oclHashcat, Hashcat legacy (previously they had to be downloaded separately).