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Date: Sun, 12 Jan 2014 13:01:22 +0100
From: Frank Dittrich <>
Subject: Re: How to use Wordlists with John The Ripper

On 01/12/2014 04:25 AM, wrote:
> I entered into terminal:  john --wordlist=password.lst 
> (as specified in the DOC)
> The result returned in terminal was: Password files required, but none specified

Thanks for explaining what error you got.
As it turns out, so far I completely misunderstood the problem.
I always assumed you wanted to use a different word list, to which one
answer could have been:
$ ./john --wordlist=my_own_wordlist.txt my_hashes
And probably I wasn't the only one misunderstanding the problem.

May be the error message "Password files required, but none specified"
should be rephrased, to avoid confusion about "password candidate lists
aka word lists" vs. "list of password hashes to be cracked".
The current phrasing of the error message might confuse users, and it
might make communication between new users and the community harder.

What about "Password hash file(s) required, but none specified" instead?

On the other hand, if you call john without any additional parameters,
you'll see use output:
So, "PASSWORD-FILES" would have to be renamed to "PASSWORD-HASH-FILES"
in the usage output.

Another detail worth mentioning is the exact john version you are using,
since the correct answer to your questions depend on the john version.
You already mentioned that you are using a Pro version.
To help us understand which version you are using, may be you can post
the output of

john | head -n 3

(This will print the first 3 lines of the usage output you get when
calling john without any parameters.)

I guess that in the Pro version, the complete contents of the usage
output will only be about 25 lines. In that case, you could as wll post
the complete contents here, i.e., copy & paste the output of this command:


This command will list the available options (among others, a list of
hash type supported by your version). That information will help us in
suggesting ways how to crack your hashes if your version wrongly
"detects" them as being LM hashes...


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