GPU acceleration in PRTK/DNA

Created by: Brendan Bone
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Introduction: PRTK/DNA version 7 introduced GPU acceleration when using nVidia-based video cards with CUDA technology.  The following will help you prepare a system that can be used in this capacity.

What video cards are supported?

GPU acceleration requires nVidia video cards using CUDA technology.  A list of all nVidia CUDA-based video cards can be found at

What CUDA Compute Capability is required?
We recommend using a GPU with a CUDA Compute Capability of 2.0 or higher, although GPUs with Compute Capability 1.0 will still be used (just to a lesser degree, as they do not include the technologies needed for dictionary attacks in future releases).

How many video cards can PRTK/DNA GPU acceleration utilize?
PRTK/DNA can utilize up to 16 supported video cards per machine (video cards that take 2 PCI-e slots will count as 2 cards to PRTK/DNA).

Which recovery modules support GPU acceleration?
GPU acceleration is currently only supported by the WinZip9, Office 2007, Office 2010, and Office 2013 recovery modules.

How do I determine which video cards will offer the greatest boost?
The factors to compare (in order of importance) are CUDA "Compute Capability", clock rate, and memory.  Higher/faster is better.

How big of a boost does GPU acceleration offer?
The speed increase offered by GPU acceleration will vary according to machine specs, workload, and the file being attacked.  However, the following are some benchmarks from one of our test boxes running PRTK:

CPU-only (Intel i7 920 @ 2.67 GHz)
File Type Passwords Per Second
ZIP AES 256 25,754
MS Word 2007 838
MS Word 2010 403

nVidia GeForce GTX 260
File Type Passwords Per Second
ZIP AES 256 90,770
MS Word 2007 3,650
MS Word 2010 1,897


nVidia GeForce GTX 560
File Type Passwords Per Second
ZIP AES 256 166,475
MS Word 2007 6,650
MS Word 2010 3,382


nVidia GeForce GTX 680
File Type Passwords Per Second
ZIP AES 256 255,237
MS Word 2007 10,203
MS Word 2010 5,135


nVidia GeForce GTX 560 + nVidia GeForce GTX 680
File Type Passwords Per Second
ZIP AES 256 394,150
MS Word 2007 15,551
MS Word 2010 7,779

****Tests were executed with a 6 character (upper, lower) rule, approximately 5 minutes were allowed to pass so that the worker could stabilize on passwords per second

How can I tell if PRTK/DNA is utilizing my GPU?
In DNA, the DNA Worker GUI will indicate if that worker is using the GPU.
In both DNA and PRTK, you can use GPU Shark to monitor GPU utilization.
When GPU acceleration is being used, CPU usage will usually be pretty low while GPU usage will be high.

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