There are 95 typeable characters to use in your passwords. A nice long random string of those 95 characters is probably the most secure password. Secure, but hard to remember. Here’s a webpage I wrote to generate secure passwords and passphrases. Passphrases are actual words, which are easier to remember, and a string of them can be as secure as hard-to-remember password with mixed cases and special characters and all. Here’s an xkcd comic that illustrates the basic problem.
There are three tools on that page, one to generate a string of words to make a passphrase, one makes a crude attempt to make a valid sentence with random words, and one that just gives you a traditional strong password.
How did I make them?
- Get some words. I downloaded some books off the internet and extracted all the unique words and compiled a long list. I think there was about 13000 words. Those utilitarian steps I coded up in C# since it’s nice and easy to work with, and Visual Studio is awesome.
- Pick some words at random. I read the dictionary in at the webserver (that step in php) and picksome at random. That’s all there is to it.
- What about the random sentence? I found a list of nouns and verbs and adjectives and whatnot online. The potentially readable passphrase is of the form:
the [adjective] [noun] [adverb] [past tense verb] the [adjective] [noun]
Q: What was the hardest part you ask? A: The list of verbs I found was in the present-tense, but the sentence sounded better if the words were in the past-tense. So I translated them all manually. That was a pain. By the end I got the brain fuzz really bad. You might find some mistakes in there. There might be something in there like taked, instead of took.
Here’s the link again: Generate passwords and passphrases.
Sincerely, Warmest regards, Best of luck,
the merciful hydrant unimpressively stamped the quarrelsome war