WPA password cracking: Parallel Processing on the Cell BE

Student thesis: Master thesis (including HD thesis)

  • Martin Daniel
This project deals with the challenges of implementing WPA password cracker on an Cell Broadband Engine processor in PlayStation 3. The WPA security standards were investigated to establish their potential weak points. As a result of investigation was detected that WPA-PSK authentication offers only one known possible weak point how to attack the WPA security during authentication. Further exploration of WPA-PSK authentication led to establish block diagram of designed application. The open source wpa\_supplicant code was used to extract the parts of code related to the WPA-PSK authentication. These parts of code were used to design working code on PC. Profiling of code determined possibility of parallel processing and detected the most consuming parts of code. After investigation of the PlayStaion 3 platform with the Cell BE processor, the password cracker was implemented on the PPU with minor changes of the code related to Big-Endian data storing. Then the code was optimised for SPU. The performance of password cracking tool was benchmarked on the PC, PPU, SPU and on the SPU after optimisation. The performance of the cluster of the six SPUs provides almost 30 times more tempts per second than implementation just on the PPU. After second iteration of implementation involving SHA1-SSE2 source code, the cluster of six SPU reached 701 tested passphrases per second.
LanguageEnglish
Publication date2009
Publishing institutionAalborg University
ID: 17901415