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cracking speed of 1983 mainframe

Discussion in 'Random Discussion' started by Gomar, Feb 24, 2013.

  1. Gomar

    Gomar Thread Starter

    Joined:
    Dec 8, 2007
    Messages:
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    First Name:
    Gomar
    Just re-watched 'WarGames' (1983). Ifcourse, for modern times the whole thing seems silly.
    However, back in '83 I was really mesmerized and fascinated by all the computer and tech stuff and jargon and gadgets.
    It's fun to look at old VCRs, PCs, modems, etc. External 1200 baud modems sure were the
    hottest gadgets back then as no one even heard of the Internet... besides whiz kids and college
    professors.

    Anyway, regarding the military mainframe hacking a code

    http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0086567/trivia?tab=gf

    It is "CPE1704TKS"

    capital letters and #s means 36 ^ 10 = 3,760,620,109,779,060

    "the speed with which the computer breaks the password by brute force, etc) which passed much of the 1983 audience by,"...

    but
    https://www.grc.com/haystack.htm

    says it would take 37.61 seconds; Assume modern military/NSA/DoD mainframes are 100x faster, thus 3761 secs or 1hour back in 1983; not bad and within the time frame.
    [ifcourse, you need to know that _only_ capitals are used]

    However, this is not realistic and probably not correct:

    "When WOPR is searching for the launch code, it is shown to be able to lock onto each digit individually. In which case, it would only take 360 tries (one for each letter and digit), to definitely find the entire code."

    how do they get 360 tries?
     
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