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Date: Wed, 8 Jul 2009 14:21:56 -0600
From: RB <>
Subject: Re: Johns future - Question about OpenCL-interest and 

On Mon, Jul 6, 2009 at 10:14, rembrandt<> wrote:
> I would just genericaly ask if there is any interest to may add OpenCL
> implemented algorithms to john.

I think you'll find a lot of silent interest.  People tend to
subscribe to this list, but given the subject matter are rather quiet
about what they do or what they'd like to see implemented.  Your best
indicator of popularity may well be stats on how often your patch is

> OpenCL might even be interesting for salted algorithms.
> John itself would need some additional modifications still I think
> (threading).

The general topic of acceleration is, of course, an oft-repeated theme
on this list.  Solutions range from parallelization (current MPI and
distribution efforts) to hardware-accelerated offload, most often
centering around either GPU offload [1] or FPGA offload [2].  For what
are most likely time reasons, Solar hasn't yet elected to publish an
officially-supported parallelization or offload scheme.  Various
approaches have come and gone, but none have been officially supported
or adopted.  There is one [3] indication of what might be considered a
righteous parallelization approach, but AFAIK there are no public
implementations.  Do note that elsewhere Solar has also specifically
stated [4] that a thread-safe implementation is suboptimal and
therefore not a likely candidate for mainstream acceptance.

JtR already has an interface to manage various "accelerators" (i.e.
machine-specific ASM), and I'm not convinced that wouldn't suffice for
a hardware accelerator, "threading" implementation or not.


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