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Find random strings within /dev/urandom. Using grep filter to just Alphanumeric characters, and then print the first 30 and remove all the line feeds.
There are 5 alternatives - vote for the best!
-B flag = don't include characters that can be confused for other characters (this helps when you give someone their password for the first time so they don't cause a lockout with, for example, denyhosts or fail2ban)
-s flag = make a "secure", or hard-to-crack password
-y flag = include special characters (not used in the example because so many people hate it -- however I recommend it)
"1 10" = output 1 password, make it 10 characters in length
For even more secure passwords please use the -y flag to include special characters like so:
pwgen -Bsy 10 1
If you want a password length longer than 6, changing the -c6 to read -c8 will give you 8 random characters instead of 6. To end up with a line-feed, use this with echo:
# echo `< /dev/urandom tr -dc _A-Z-a-z-0-9 | head -c6`
According to the gpg(1) manual:
--gen-random 0|1|2 count
Emit count random bytes of the given quality level 0, 1 or 2. If count is not given or zero, an endless sequence of random bytes will be emitted. If used with --armor the output will be base64 encoded. PLEASE, don't use this command unless you know what you are doing; it may remove precious entropy from the system!
If your entropy pool is critical for various operations on your system, then using this command is not recommended to generate a secure password. With that said, regenerating entropy is as simple as:
du -s /
This is a quick way to generate a strong, base64 encoded, secure password of arbitrary length, using your entropy pool (example above shows a 30-character long password).
The pwgen program generates passwords which are designed to be easily memorized by humans, while being as secure as possible. Human-memorable passwords are never going to be as secure as completely completely random passwords. [from pwgen man page]
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