Monday, March 7, 2011

Linux Tip of the Day: Generating a secure password

If you're like most people, you find it incredibly difficult to generate truly random and secure password. Good passwords should be at least 8 characters long, contain numbers and letters and a good mix of both uppercase and lowercase letter. Think about that for a moment and you'll see why many people use really easy passwords the includes their names, pets and spouses names, or important dates.

Linux users have a great tool for generating secure passwords called 'pwgen'. Using pwgen, you can generate completely secure password of any length by typing a simple command.

If you don't already have pwgen installed and you happen to be using a Debian based system (like Debian or Ubuntu) you can install it by typing in the terminal

sudo apt-get install pwgen

Once the software is installed, you can generate a secure password of any length by typing something similar to

pwgen 8 1

That command will generate a single eight character password with a complete mix of numbers and both upper and lower case letters.

It's very easy to use and pretty intuitive. Now, you have no excuse to use insecure passwords again!

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