Password Hash Cracking with the NVIDIA RTX 4090

Brian Judd

NVIDIA RTX 4090 Unboxing

In February 2017, I co-authored a blog detailing our build of an 8-GPU password cracker. Over the past 8 years, it’s had millions of views and thousands of comments. To all the concerned writers, nothing has melted down and we continue to run 2 nearly identical 8-GPU crackers today. Both are currently running 8 NVIDIA GTX 1080Ti cards.

We also got our hands on one of NVIDIA’s latest cards! We missed the October 12th launch by 9 days but finally found an overclocked Gigabyte GeForce RTX 4090 GAMING OC 24G for sale locally.

Our Goals:

  • Benchmark NTLM hash cracking performance and compare it to our current RTX 3090 and GTX 1080Ti cards
  • Based on the 4090’s cracking performance, design a new “Kracken4” cracking rig
  • Utilize individual 4090 cards for quick local password cracking

Stay tuned for a future article on our monster RTX 4090 Kracken4 build!!

For our unscientific analysis, we used Hashcat’s NTLM (-m 1000) benchmark (-b) to test our 2 current model cards and the new RTX 4090. This included the NVIDIA GTX 1080Ti, NVIDIA RTX 3090, and NVIDIA RTX 4090.

Device (as seen by Hashcat)Hashcat NTLM Benchmark Speed
GeForce GTX 1080 Ti, 11039/11178 MB, 28MCU66.76 GH/s (28.03ms)
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 3090, 23680/24575 MB, 82MCU121.2 GH/s (22.55ms)
NVIDIA GeForce RTX 4090, 23010/24563 MB, 128MCU252.0 GH/s (16.74ms)
All benchmark tests were performed using Hashcat 6.2.6 using the -b and -m 1000 options (-O is applied automatically)

When attempting to crack a single NTLM hash using an 8-character brute force crack, the actual average performance was closer to 225 GH/s. Without any tuning and using the latest NVIDIA driver for Windows, the RTX 4090 could brute any 8-character password in approximately 8 hours!

Screenshot of a single NTLM hash crack job running an 8-character brute force attack.

Our early testing shows that the NVIDIA RTX 4090 is a strong contender for high-performance password hash cracking. Despite running the RTX 4090 right out of the box without any tuning on a Windows 11 desktop computer, the cracking performance is amazing. When compared to our current cracking rigs with 8 GTX 1080Ti cards, a single RTX 4090 is roughly 48% as powerful. That makes the RTX 4090 almost 4x faster than the GTX 1080Ti. Stay tuned as we figure out how many 4090’s we can get our hands on and combine into a single cracking rig.

Interested in learning more about SynerComm's password cracking services? Check out this page!

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