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Date: Fri, 23 Nov 2012 00:28:33 +0100
From: Frank Dittrich <>
Subject: Re: "Hide" more options

(Full quote just because this mail is quite old, and I don't know who
might have subscribed to the list afterwards)

On 06/30/2012 05:35 PM, magnum wrote:
> The usage blob is very long. I propose that the following options are
> moved to "hidden" because they are either for expert use or for very
> rare cases:
> --config=FILE             use FILE instead of john.conf or john.ini
> --make-charset=FILE       make a charset file. It will be overwritten
> --mem-file-size=SIZE      size threshold for wordlist preload (default 5 MB)
> --crack-status            emit a status line whenever a password is cracked
> --max-run-time=N          gracefully exit after this many seconds
> --regen-lost-salts=N      regenerate lost salts (see doc/OPTIONS)
> --plugin=NAME[,..]        load this (these) dynamic plugin(s)
> The --make-charset is arguable because it's a core option.
> Note that "hidden" options are not really hidden anymore, but instead of
> shown in the main usage blob, they are listed with --list=hidden-options.
> We could also (or instead) move the format list closer to bottom as that
> is (IMHO) what you most often look at.
> magnum

Now that I fixed a bug in bash completion which prevented it from adding
a trailing space to hidden options which don't have a value,
I'd like to continue the discussion about what options IMHO could be
moved from the main usage output to --list=hidden-options output.

Meanwhile, most of the options mentioned above have been moved to the
--list=hidden-options output.

One option (--make-charset=FILE) remained in the usage output because it
is an option which also exists in the core version.

One option remained in the main usage output, but I think it should also
be moved to --hidden-options:
--plugin=NAME[,..]        load this (these) dynamic plugin(s)

IMHO, there are even more options which could/should be moved from the
main usage output to the output of --list=hidden-options:

                 --pipe  like --stdin, but bulk reads, and allows rules

In addition to just moving it, should read
--pipe                   like --stdin, but bulk reads, and allows rules
(May be even s/rules/--rules/)

--loopback[=FILE]         like --wordlist, but fetch words from a .pot file
--dupe-suppression        suppress all dupes in wordlist (and force preload)
--encoding=NAME           input data is non-ascii (eg. UTF-8, ISO-8859-1).
                          For a full list of NAME use --list=encodings
--pot=NAME                pot file to use

The following option should be moved above the --format=NAME line
(similar to the core john version).

If we really move that many option to --list=hidden-options, the
--list=WHAT description might need to get a little bit longer (and I
think it should stay at the end of the usage output). What about this:

--list=WHAT               list capabilities, see --list=help or doc/OPTIONS,
                          see --list=hidden-options for more options

The attached patch (not intended to be committed, but for discussion)
makes the suggested changes.

In total, the usage output gets 6 lines shorter, and the output of
--list=hidden-options gets 7 lines longer.

What do you think?


View attachment "hide_even_more_options.txt" of type "text/plain" (6474 bytes)

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