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Started by Chris GillOct 30, 2021

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Hash Code and Checksum - what's the difference?

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My information is that a hash code and checksum are similar matters - a numeric value, computed for a block of data, that is rather specific.

i.e. The probability of blocks of data yielding the equal numeric hash/checksum fee is low enough that it can be left out for the purposes of the utility.

So do we have two words for the same thing, or are there important differences between hash codes and checksums?

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Techiio-commentatorSidhdarth Basu replied 3 months ago0 likes0 dislikes

checksum (such as CRC32) is to prevent accidental changes. If one byte changes, the checksum changes. The checksum is not safe to protect against malicious changes: it is pretty easy to create a file with a particular checksum.

hash function maps some data to other data. It is often used to speed up comparisons or create a hash table. Not all hash functions are secure and the hash does not necessarily changes when the data changes.

cryptographic hash function (such as SHA1) is a checksum that is secure against malicious changes. It is pretty hard to create a file with a specific cryptographic hash.

To make things more complicated, cryptographic hash functions are sometimes simply referred to as hash functions.

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