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How to do a md5hash


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9 replies to this topic

#1 MaryBet82

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 10:38 AM

When you download software that provides an md5hash value, how do you check the file's value once you've downloaded? Is there software that you use?

Edited by MaryBet82, 18 March 2011 - 10:38 AM.

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#2 Animal

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 11:10 AM

Yes you need software for that. You can do a google search for hash tools there are quite a few. I use the imaginatively named HashTools version: v2.2.0

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#3 MaryBet82

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Posted 18 March 2011 - 02:44 PM

Thanks Animal,

Googling for "hash tools" I found a free online md5sum tool. HashTools looks like an easy to use program. I bookmarked the download page.
mac 10.6 on macbook pro
WinXP sp2 on Dell 380 w/ 512 MB RAM- currently dead in the water
WinXP tab ed sp 3 on Thinkpad X41 w/ 1.5 GB RAM - lemony flavored
Win2K Sp4 on Sony VAIO GXR600 w/ 512 MB RAM - currently blue screening

#4 Andrew

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Posted 19 March 2011 - 03:27 AM

I like MD5 Context Menu. It adds an item to the Windows right-click menu for calculating the MD5 and is very lightweight (the installer is only about 200KB.)


Another handy one is HashTab, which can calculate several different hashes for a given file.

Edited by Andrew, 19 March 2011 - 03:45 AM.


#5 Barthez

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Posted 19 March 2011 - 02:25 PM

Another handy one is HashTab, which can calculate several different hashes for a given file.

Awesome find! Program is very intuitive since it merges with file properties. I'll drop my old WinDigest to use this one. Also, thanks for Softpedia link :)

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#6 MaryBet82

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 11:38 AM

I only use a hash value when I've downloaded a file and the md5sum is provided - which isn't very often. I hadn't done it in so long I had no memory of how I had done the check. So I used the fileformat.info site to check the md5sum of the bbie10.zip file I downloaded and got the same value provided - using the View ASCII hex option. There is also a Download binary option, but I wouldn't know what to do with that.

Is there some other area where I could/ought to be checking hash values? Like checking backups to ext hdd's or dvd? I usually just open a few random backed up files to check the backup went OK.
mac 10.6 on macbook pro
WinXP sp2 on Dell 380 w/ 512 MB RAM- currently dead in the water
WinXP tab ed sp 3 on Thinkpad X41 w/ 1.5 GB RAM - lemony flavored
Win2K Sp4 on Sony VAIO GXR600 w/ 512 MB RAM - currently blue screening

#7 Andrew

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 05:58 PM

Checksums like MD5, SHA1, etc. can only be used to verify that data hasn't been altered. They unfortunately can't be used to tell whether something like a backup has succeeded*.

In the World of Windows you don't run across very many checksums; switch to Linux and you'll find yourself up to your ears in them!







*Well, I suppose you could write a program that compares the checksums of the backed up files individually against their originals, but that would be time-consuming for large datasets. In any case, I believe that most backup utilities already do some sort of verification along these lines.

Edited by Andrew, 21 March 2011 - 06:00 PM.


#8 Romeo29

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Posted 21 March 2011 - 09:32 PM

Microsoft has released their own FCIV tool with MD5 and SHA1 capabilities. http://support.microsoft.com/kb/841290
I personally use Hash It which is only 40KB in size and no install required.
I also like VisualHash which is very good but requires .NET (already in Vista and above).

Edited by Romeo29, 21 March 2011 - 09:33 PM.


#9 Layback Bear

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 12:07 PM

Just for information.
http://www.microsoft.com/technet/security/advisory/961509.mspx

It is a nice read on MD5.

#10 Andrew

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Posted 24 March 2011 - 12:33 PM

MD5 is no longer recommended for cryptographic uses (such as digital certificates) but it's still useful for general file verification purposes.




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