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hashrat(1) hashing tool supporting several hashes and recursivity hashrat(1)


hashrat - hashing tool supporting several hashes and recursivity


hashrat [options] [paths to hash]
hashrat -c [options] [input file of hashes]


Hashrat is a hash-generation utility that supports the md5, sha1, sha256, sha512, whirlpool, jh-224, jh256, jh-384 and jh-512 hash functions, and also the HMAC versions of those functions. It can output in traditional format (same as md5sum and shasum and the like) or it's own format.

Hashes can be output in octal, decimal, hexadecimal, uppercase hexadecimal or base64.

Hashrat also supports directory recursion, hashing entire devices, and generating a hash for an entire directory. It has a CGI mode that can be used as a web-page to lookup hashes.


-?, -help, --help
Print this help.
-version, --version
Print program version.
-type <type>
Use hash algorithm <type>. Hash types can be chained as a comma-seperated list.
Use md5 hash algorithm. This is the default hash.
Use sha1 hash algorithm.
Use sha256 hash algorithm.
Use sha512 hash algorithm.
Use whirlpool hash algorithm.
Use whirlpool hash algorithm.
Use jh-224 hash algorithm.
Use jh-256 hash algorithm.
Use jh-384 hash algorithm.
Use jh-512 hash algorithm.
HMAC using specified hash algorithm.
Encode with octal instead of hex.
Encode with decimal instead of hex.
-H, -HEX
Encode with UPPERCASE hexadecimal.
-64, -base64
Encode with base64.
-i64, -i64
Encode with base64, with rearranged characters.
-p64, -p64
Encode with base64 with a-z,A-Z and _-, for best compatibility with 'allowed characters' in websites.
-x64, -x64
Encode with XXencode style base64.
-u64, -u64
Encode with UUencode style base64.
-g64, -g64
Encode with GEDCOM style base64.
-a85, -a85
Encode with ASCII85.
-z85, -z85
Encode with ZEROMQ variant of ASCII85. -t, -trad Output hashes in traditional md5sum, shaXsum format.
-tag, --tag -bsd
Output hashes in bsdsum format.
Recurse into directories when hashing files.
-f <listfile>
Hash files listed in <listfile>.
-i <pattern>
Only hash items matching a comma-seperated list of shell patterns. Please be aware that -i does not yet work on directories, only files.
-x <pattern>
Exclude items matching a comma-seperated list of shell patterns. Works on both directories and files.
-n <length>
Truncate hashes to <length> bytes.
CHECK hashes against list from file (or stdin).
CHECK hashes but only show failures.
-C <dir>
CHECK files under dir recursively against a list from file (or stdin). This can detect 'new' files
-Cf <dir>
CHECK files under dir recursively against a list from file (or stdin). This can detect 'new' files. Only show failures.
MATCH files from a list read from stdin.
Read hashes from stdin, upload them to a memcached server (requires the -memcached option).
-X, -exec
In CHECK or MATCH mode only examine executable files.
Search for duplicate files.
-memcached <server>, -mcd <server>
Specify memcached server. This option overrides reading list from stdin if used with -m, -c or -cf.
-h <script>
Script to run when a file fails CHECK mode, or is found in MATCH mode.
-hook <script>
Script to run when a file fails CHECK mode, or is found in FIND mode
Use ANSI color codes on output when checking hashes.
-S, -strict
Strict mode: when checking, check file mtime, owner, group, and inode as well as it's hash.
Dereference (follow) symlinks.
Stay one filesystem.
-dirmode DirMode: read all files in directory and create one hash for them (implies -r).
DevMode: read from a file EVEN OF IT'S A DEVNODE.
Read lines from stdin and hash each line independently.
-rl, -rawlines
Read lines from stdin and hash each line independently, INCLUDING any trailing whitespace. This is compatible with 'echo text | md5sum'.
Run in HTTP CGI mode.
Treat 'file' arguments as either ssh or http URLs, and pull files over the network and then hash them (allows hashing of files on remote machines). URLs are in the format ssh://[username]:[password]@[host]:[port] or http://[username]:[password]@[host]:[port].
-idfile <path>
Path to a ssh private key file to use to authenticate INSTEAD OF A PASSWORD when pulling files via ssh.
Use eXtended file ATTRibutes. In hash mode, store hashes in the file attributes. In check mode compare against hashes stored in file attributes.
Use TRUSTED eXtended file ATTRibutes. In hash mode, store hashes in trusted file attributes. The trusted attributes can only be read and written by root. Under FreeBSD this means 'SYSTEM' attributes.
Use hashes stored in user xattr if they're younger than the mtime of the file. This speeds up outputting hashes.
-u <types>
Update. In checking mode, update hashes for the files as you go. The <types> is a comma-separated list of things to update, which can be xattr memcached or a file name. This will update these targets with the hash that was found at the time of checking.
When reading data from stdin in linemode, set the terminal to not echo characters, thus hiding typed input.
Update X11 clipboard and primary selections to the current hash. This works using Xterm command sequences. The xterm resource 'allowWindowOps' must be set to 'true' for this to work.
When reading data from stdin in linemode replace characters with stars.


Hashrat can also detect if it's being run under any of the following names (e.g., via symlinks):
Run with '-trad -md5'.
Run with '-trad -sha1'.
Run with '-trad -sha1'.
Run with '-trad -sha256'.
Run with '-trad -sha512'.
Run with '-trad -jh224'.
Run with '-trad -jh256'.
Run with '-trad -jh384'.
Run with '-trad -jh512'.
Run with '-trad -whirl'.
Run in web-enabled 'cgi mode'.


Generate a md5 hash of data read from stdin (default hash type is md5).
hashrat -jh256
Generate a jh-256 hash of data read from stdin.
hashrat -sha256 -64
Generate a sha-256 hash of data read from stdin, output with base64 encoding.
hashrat -sha256 -64 -lines
Read lines from stdin, and generate a sha-256 with base64 encoding FOR EVERY LINE. This strips any whitespace from the end of the line (including \r and/or \n line terminators).
hashrat -md5 -trad -rawlines
Read lines from stdin, and generate a md5 hash in traditional format for every line INCLUDING TRAILING WHITESPACE. This is compatible with 'echo text | md5sum', where text is one line, as echo adds a newline to the end of the text it outputs.
hashrat -type sha256,whirl,md5 -64
Generate a sha-256 hash of data read from stdin, then hash the result with whirlpool, then with md5.
hashrat *
Generate a list of hashes for files in the current directory (default hash type is md5).
hashrat -r -sha1 * > hashes.sha1
Generate a list of hashes for files in the current directory, AND ALL SUBDIRECTORIES, using sha1 hashing.
cat hashes.sha1 > hashrat -c
Check hashes listed in hashes.sha1.
cat hashes.sha1 > hashrat -c -strict
Check hashes listed in hashes.sha1. If hashes are NOT in traditional format than the -strict flag will cause hashrat to check the files uid, gid, size, mtime and inode and print a failure message if any of those don't match.
cat hashes.sha1 > hashrat -cf
Check hashes listed in hashes.sha1 but only output failures.
cat APT1.md5 | hashrat -m -r /
Read a list of hashes from stdin and search recursively for files matching them.
cat APT1.md5 | hashrat -lm -memcached
Read a list of hashes from stdin, and register them in a memcached server.
hashrat -m -memcached -r /
Search recursively for files whose hashes are stored in a memcached server.
hashrat -devmode -whirlpool -64 /dev/sda1
Generate a whirlpool hash of the entire device /dev/sda1. Output result in base 64.
hashrat -sha1 -net ssh:user:password@myhost/bin/*
Generate sha1 hashes of files in /bin/* on the remote machine 'myhost'.
hashrat -whirlpool -net
Generate whirlpool hash for the listed URL. Note, many webpages have dynamic content that changes every time, so this will only return the same hash over and over if the page is static and doesn't change.
hashrat -dups -r /home -u xattr
Search for duplicate files under /home. Update hashes stored in filesystem attributes as you go.


Strong Passwords

Hashrat can be used to generate strong passwords for websites. So, you don't have to remember the strong password, if it be always regenerate with hashrat. You need to remember a handful of moderately decent passwords, i.e., things that I can't find by grepping in the '10,000 most popular passwords' list[1], and an additional personal pin. Now, you need to combine the website name, one of passwords, and the personal pin, into a string and feed them into hashrat:

    $ echo " password 1234" | hashrat -sha1 -64
Obviously, a good password isn't 'password' and a good pin isn't '1234', but you get the idea. This gives a 28-character string that should take "8.02 trillion centuries" to crack with a "massive cracking array", according to Steve Gibson's Password haystacks utility[2]. This is what I then use as my password. Unfortunately some websites won't take a 28-character password, and for these you can truncate to the appropriate length (using the -n flag), but the results are still stronger than anything you could remember, and nothing needs storing on disk (as with password managers).

There are some dangers to using the 'echo' method shown above if you are on a shared machine, or if someone gets hold of your computer/harddrive. On a shared machine someone could type 'ps ax' to see all commands running, and if they time it right, they might see your command-line with your password in it. Another danger lies in using a shell (like bash) that will record your typed commands so you can recall them later. Bash stores this information on disk in the file .bash_history, so if you use the 'echo' method shown above your password will be saved on disk. To combat this hashrat has line mode:

    $ hashrat -sha1 -64 -lines
This reads lines from stdin, so type into hashrat and then press ENTER, and you'll be given the hash of the line you typed. By this method your password is neither visible in 'ps ax', nor is ever stored on disk.

A -lines will produce a different hash to the 'echo' method listed above, because it strips any trailing whiespace off the lines read. If you want strict compatibility with 'echo' (by default echo adds a newline to the end of the text to output) then use rawlines mode:

    $ hashrat -sha1 -64 -rawlines
Finally, you can prevent shoulder-surfers seeing you type your password by using the -hide-input or -star-input options to hide what you type.

Watching for file changes

Like md5sum/shasum etc, hashrat can be used to detect changes in files that might indicate malicious activity. For instance, in order to get early warning of malware like cryptolocker (that encrypts files on a users disk, or on network shares, and then demands a ransom for file recovery) you can scatter about the disk a number of Canary files that should not change. You need record their hashes and regularly check them. If they change, you will know something is going on.

Hashes generated by hashrat can be output to a file, or stored in extended file attributes, or in a memcached server.

    $ hashrat -sha256 -r . > /tmp/files.sha256
    $ hashrat -sha256 -r . -xattr
    $ hashrat -sha256 -r . -memcached
Similarly these can then be used to check files later:

    $ cat /tmp/files.sha256 | hashrat -c -sha256
    $ hashrat -C . -sha256  -xattr
    $ hashrat -C /tmp -sha256  -memcached
Note that -c checks only check the files in the supplied list. The -C flag instead checks all files in a directory (supplied on command line) and expects to find those in the list. This means that -C can find new files that aren't in the list, whereas -c can't.
There is a slight difference between xattr/memcached checks and checks where a list is read from stdin. Currently when reading from stdin hashrat will ONLY check the files in the list. However, in -xattr and -memcached mode, it will check all files, outputting and error for those where no stored hash can be found. This is likely to change in the a future release, with the stdin method being brought into line with the others.
Finding files that match hashes

Using the -m flag hashrat can be told to read a range of hashes from stdin, and then search for files matching those hashes. For Example:

    $ cat APT1-AppendixE-MD5s.txt | hashrat -r -m /usr
The last command will search recursively under /usr for files with hashes matching those in APT1-AppendixE-MD5s.txt. The input on stdin must begin with a hash, anything written after the hash will be treated as a comment to be displayed if a file matching the hash is found.

Hashtypes other than md5 can be used thusly:

    $ cat sha1-list.lst | hashrat -r -sha1 -m /usr
Hashes can also be loaded into a memcached server, so that the same file list can be checked on a number of machines, without needing to store the hashlist on those machines. First you need load the hashes:

    $ cat APT1-AppendixE-MD5s.txt | hashrat -lm -memcached
The last line loads the hashes to a memcached server at You can then search against the memcached server by:

    $ hashrat -r -m -memcached /usr
Find duplicate files

Using the -dups flag (usually in combination with the -r recursive flag) hashrat can be set to search for duplicate files and output any found to stdout.

CGI Mode

If hashrat is run with the -cgi flag, or if it's run with a name of hashrat.cgi (either by renaming the hashrat executable, or via a symbolic link) it will output a webpage that allows users to look up hashes over the web. This allows to look-up your strong passwords even if you don't have access to a local version of hashrat.


Hashrat can use extended filesystem attributes where these are supported. This allows a hash to be stored in the filesystem metadata of the target file. This can then be used for checking hashes, or for caching hashes to produce faster output during hashing runs. There are two types of filesystem attribute, trusted attributes, which can only be set and read by root, and user attributes, which can be set and read by any user that has the appropriate permissions for the file.

Hashes can be stored against files by using the -xattr option to set user attributes:

    $ hashrat -sha256 -r . -xattr
And using the -txattr flag to set trusted attributes (you must be root to set trusted attributes):

    # hashrat -sha256 -r . -txattr
When checking either flag can be used, but hashrat will always use trusted attributes when running as root, if those are available, otherwise it will fall back to user attributes.

    $ hashrat -c -sha256 -r . -xattr
The -cache option allows using stored hashes rather than regenerating hashes. It only considers hashes stored in user attributes at current.

    $ hashrat -r . -cache
This makes getting a report of hashes considerably faster, but it runs the risk that the hashes may not be accurate. Hashrat will only output a hash stored in file attributes if the storage time of the hash is younger than the modify time (mtime) of the file, however, this means an attacker could change the modify time of the file to hide changes they've made. Thus this feature should not be used for security checking purposes (but should be safe for uses like finding files that have changed and need to be backed up, for instance).


The hashrat was written by Colum Paget <>.

This manual page was written by Joao Eriberto Mota Filho <> for the Debian project (but may be used by others).

Jan 2015 HASHRAT 1.5