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Original artwork by Angus McBride

Ringwraith Cluster

[Alpha version source]
Readers of this page are encouraged to send email to FX regarding possible extensions of this project or sites they know who would like to run the cluster. If somone thinks this is a good idea, commercial applications could be possible (but I doubt any commercial use).

1. Introduction

The RingWraith Cluster Project is about password and key cracking in a scalable and system independed parallel environment. The name "Cluster" is not 100% correct, because it is more a distributed sharing of computing power then a classical cluster design, which was planned before but resulted in to many issues. However, the name was kept. "RingWraith" is a term from J.J.R. Tolkin's work "Lord of the Rings" as the reader surely knows. This came from the first experimental environment that was used in the early days of this project. It was build from three 80486 boxes in a token ring network and suggested the name RingWraiths because they where all bound to a ring, ruled by a master and worked (or still work) for the "dark side".
The current implementation is the first one that actually works. There where former trys and most of them where canceled because of implementation issues, bad planning and most important the leak of good and reliable protocol and algorithm definitions. Although it works now, keep in mind that it is still an experimental thing and has ALPHA quality.

2. Design Goals

The overall design has only one goal: Crack passwords or cryptographic keys faster then ever by using a scalable parallel environment and as much CPUs as possible. This goal has several subordinated goals: The current implementation only handles crypt(2), but can be easily extended to do any other password-to-crypto stuff.

3. The Cluster

Our current test cluster consists of 10 80x486 systems, 4 Pentium systems and several "non-dedicated" systems ranging from an Athlon 1300MHz to Latops, all running Linux (SuSE and Slackware), Solaris x86, FreeBSD or OpenBSD.
They are networked together with FastEthernet cards over a HUB.

4. General Functionality

Functional summary: The general approach is as follows:

5. DarkLord (RingWraith Master)

6. CPU Power Provider (RingWraith)