tags 485422 wontfix
retitle 485422 john: explain better the use of --rules and --test
severity 485422 wishlist
thanks

Ciao Francesco,

On Mon, 09 Jun 2008 14:05:51 +0200, Francesco Potorti` wrote:

> Package: john
> Version: 1.7.2-3
> Severity: normal
> 
> $ /usr/sbin/john -test ~/mypasswd 
> Created directory: /home/pot/.john
> Invalid options combination or duplicate option: "-test"
> 
> $ /usr/sbin/john --test ~/mypasswd 
> Invalid options combination or duplicate option: "--test"

--test does *not* need any filename as argument. It just does a benchmark of
john's capabilities on the system it's running on. From the manpage:

-test
  Benchmarks all the enabled ciphertext format crackers, and tests them
  for correct operation at the same time.

In fact, if you try it without any argument, it just works:

$ john -test
Benchmarking: Traditional DES [64/64 BS MMX]... ^CWait...
Session aborted
$ john --test
Benchmarking: Traditional DES [64/64 BS MMX]... ^CWait...
Session aborted
$

> $ /usr/sbin/john -rules ~/mypasswd 
> Invalid options combination or duplicate option: "-rules"
> 
> $ /usr/sbin/john --rules ~/mypasswd 
> Invalid options combination or duplicate option: "--rules"

For --rules, it can only be used together with "--wordlist". From the manpage:

-rules
  Enables wordlist rules, that are read from [List.Rules:Wordlist].

I admit this is quite confusing. But if you read the on-screen help:

$ john | grep rules
--rules                    enable word mangling rules for wordlist mode
$

This is much clearer.
--rules does "word mangling" on words passed from a wordlist.
That is, if you have "pass", with --rules, john also tries:

Pass
pAss
paSs
pasS
...
PASS


I admit the manpage could be much clearer about these options. I'm closing the
bug, as it's not really a bug, but I'm pinging the upstream author (CCed) about
this. :)

Kindly,
David

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