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Excel Password Software
The first versions of Excel password recovery software were
launched in early 1998 and today there are many password recovery tools available
on the Internet. Some are excellent, while others are ineffective on real world
password protected files.
The latest versions are far more powerful than the original packages. For example,
Ultimate Zip Cracker can recover any Word or Excel documents regardless of the
password length using key recovery (provided default encryption was used - the
advance encryption is virtually impossible to break and is not yet well supported
by password recovery software vendors).
We refer to these tools as "password recovery software", but in many cases, they
will open the protected part of your file without recovering the original password.
In the case of Worksheet and Workbook passwords, the original password may be
stored as a hash, so the software will find other passwords that will work in
place of the original used.
We estimate that about 75% of Excel passwords are unbreakable using regular recovery
methods (such as brute-force attack and dictionary search), so whether a particular
package includes key recovery functionality is an important feature to take into
account when selecting Excel password recovery software.
Remember that key recovery will open the document by removing the encryption,
and will not reveal the original password used.
If you need to recover password protected VBA modules, then be aware that standard
Excel password recovery software will not do this - you need software that includes
VBA password recovery functionality.
When you buy password recovery software, remember to buy one that will work on
real world documents with tough passwords and not just simple test passwords.
In our experience, most documents are not protected with simple dictionary words.
The software review section of this site has tested programs against passwords
used in commercial documents and provided details of the best software.
Check out the reviews section for some
information on some packages that we have found to be effective.