One-way string hashing
String Functions
PHP Manual


(PHP 4, PHP 5)

cryptOne-way string hashing


string crypt ( string $str [, string $salt ] )

crypt() will return a hashed string using the standard Unix DES-based algorithm or alternative algorithms that may be available on the system.

The salt parameter is optional. However, crypt() creates weak password without salt. PHP 5.6 or later raise E_NOTICE error without it. Make sure specify strong enough salt for better security.

password_hash() uses strong hash, generates strong salt, applies proper rounds automatically. password_hash() is simple crypt() wrapper and compatible with existing password hashes. Use of password_hash() is encouraged.

Some operating systems support more than one type of hash. In fact, sometimes the standard DES-based algorithm is replaced by an MD5-based algorithm. The hash type is triggered by the salt argument. Prior to 5.3, PHP would determine the available algorithms at install-time based on the system's crypt(). If no salt is provided, PHP will auto-generate either a standard two character (DES) salt, or a twelve character (MD5), depending on the availability of MD5 crypt(). PHP sets a constant named CRYPT_SALT_LENGTH which indicates the longest valid salt allowed by the available hashes.

The standard DES-based crypt() returns the salt as the first two characters of the output. It also only uses the first eight characters of str, so longer strings that start with the same eight characters will generate the same result (when the same salt is used).

On systems where the crypt() function supports multiple hash types, the following constants are set to 0 or 1 depending on whether the given type is available:


As of PHP 5.3.0, PHP contains its own implementation and will use that if the system lacks of support for one or more of the algorithms.



The string to be hashed.


Using the CRYPT_BLOWFISH algorithm, will result in the str parameter being truncated to a maximum length of 72 characters. This is only a concern if are using the same salt to hash strings with this algorithm that are over 72 bytes in length, as this will result in those hashes being identical.


An optional salt string to base the hashing on. If not provided, the behaviour is defined by the algorithm implementation and can lead to unexpected results.

Return Values

Returns the hashed string or a string that is shorter than 13 characters and is guaranteed to differ from the salt on failure.


Version Description
5.6.0 Raise E_NOTICE security warning if salt is omitted.
5.3.7 Added $2x$ and $2y$ Blowfish modes to deal with potential high-bit attacks.
5.3.2 Added SHA-256 and SHA-512 crypt based on Ulrich Drepper's » implementation.
5.3.2 Fixed Blowfish behaviour on invalid rounds to return "failure" string ("*0" or "*1"), instead of falling back to DES.
5.3.0 PHP now contains its own implementation for the MD5 crypt, Standard DES, Extended DES and the Blowfish algorithms and will use that if the system lacks of support for one or more of the algorithms.


Example #1 crypt() examples

crypt('mypassword'); // let the salt be automatically generated

/* You should pass the entire results of crypt() as the salt for comparing a
   password, to avoid problems when different hashing algorithms are used. (As
   it says above, standard DES-based password hashing uses a 2-character salt,
   but MD5-based hashing uses 12.) */
if (crypt($user_input$hashed_password) == $hashed_password) {
"Password verified!";

Example #2 Using crypt() with htpasswd

// Set the password
$password 'mypassword';

// Get the hash, letting the salt be automatically generated
$hash crypt($password);

Example #3 Using crypt() with different hash types

/* These salts are examples only, and should not be used verbatim in your code.
   You should generate a distinct, correctly-formatted salt for each password.
if (CRYPT_STD_DES == 1) {
'Standard DES: ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''rl') . "\n";

if (
'Extended DES: ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''_J9..rasm') . "\n";

if (
CRYPT_MD5 == 1) {
'MD5:          ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''$1$rasmusle$') . "\n";

if (
'Blowfish:     ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''$2a$07$usesomesillystringforsalt$') . "\n";

if (
CRYPT_SHA256 == 1) {
'SHA-256:      ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''$5$rounds=5000$usesomesillystringforsalt$') . "\n";

if (
CRYPT_SHA512 == 1) {
'SHA-512:      ' crypt('rasmuslerdorf''$6$rounds=5000$usesomesillystringforsalt$') . "\n";

The above example will output something similar to:

Standard DES: rl.3StKT.4T8M
Extended DES: _J9..rasmBYk8r9AiWNc
MD5:          $1$rasmusle$rISCgZzpwk3UhDidwXvin0
Blowfish:     $2a$07$usesomesillystringfore2uDLvp1Ii2e./U9C8sBjqp8I90dH6hi
SHA-256:      $5$rounds=5000$usesomesillystri$KqJWpanXZHKq2BOB43TSaYhEWsQ1Lr5QNyPCDH/Tp.6
SHA-512:      $6$rounds=5000$usesomesillystri$D4IrlXatmP7rx3P3InaxBeoomnAihCKRVQP22JZ6EY47Wc6BkroIuUUBOov1i.S5KPgErtP/EN5mcO.ChWQW21


Note: There is no decrypt function, since crypt() uses a one-way algorithm.

See Also

String Functions
PHP Manual