Using blowfish for password hashes in FreeBSD

Posted on Dec 24, 2011

FreeBSD uses sha512 to encrypted passwords for user accounts. However, blowfish is available in all recent versions of FreeBSD and its easy to change the default crypt method to use blowfish instead

In /etc/login.conf change




and recreate the login capability database with the command cap_mkdb /etc/login.conf

Now have each user change their password. Start with your current login.

$ passwd
Changing local password for {current user}.
new password:
retype new password:
passwd: updating the database. . .
passwd: done

The second field in your password file, which is the cipher of the passwords, should begin with $2 now which indicates the use of blowfish. The command grep ${USER} /etc/master.passwd | cut -d: -f2 can be used to verify the change.

Then in /etc/auth.conf change

#crypt_default = md5 des


crypt_default = blf md5 des

All new users you now create with adduser will now have their password encrypted in Blowfish.