Basically I am trying to bruteforce a MD5 hash in two systems using hashcat. The hash is between 3-8 characters in length. But when I attempt to split the password tries in hashcat, it throws below error

Use of --skip/--limit is not supported with --increment or mask files.

I have been playing around with hashcat for a while now, modifying ?1 length, with and without ``-increment` options and etc. but none worked:

Hashcat Command I tried:

hashcat.exe -a 3 -m 0 81dc9bdb52d04dc20036dbd8313ed055 ?1?1?1?1?1?1?1?1?1 -1 ?a --increment --increment-min 3 -s 857375 -l 3317102156016625

I also tried to remove --increment --increment-min 3, with that the hashcat start cracking, but only tries 9 character passwords.

I basically I want to try the passwords that are 3 to 8 characters in length and want to split the attempts between two systems.

1 Answer 1


Just as the error says, --increment and skip/limit options are not compatible. There's no way to do what you're describing with a single hashcat command and a single mask. But if you expand your approach to include multiple masks or multiple invocations of hashcat, you can get there.

I presume that for a fast hash like MD5, running through the shorter lengths wouldn't really take much time - so it's length 8 that you are probably most interested in splitting across systems.

I'd use three commands:

  • On one system, a script/batch file that runs hashcat incrementing lengths 3 through 7, and then runs hashcat again simply with length 8 (the full mask, no increment-related commands necessary) with your desired skip/limit options

  • On the other system, just run length 8 with your other desired skip/limit options.

You must log in to answer this question.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged .