PassFab for ZIP is a utility that helps you recover lost passwords for all types of ZIP archives, including 7ZIP, WinZip, and PKZIP. The first thing you will like about the tool is how easy it is to use. The user interface is very minimalistic, and the buttons are well labeled so that even people with no technical skills can easily retrieve their ZIP passwords.
PassFab for ZIP promises quick recovery of lost passwords by leveraging the latest decryption algorithm and three password attack methods.
The first method is Dictionary attack, and it tries to find your password from an inbuilt dictionary or a dictionary that you create yourself. The second method is brute-force with mask attack, and it’s used when you have some information about your passwords such as the length, character combination, first character, or last character. The utility will use this information as clues to facilitate faster password recovery. The last method is brute-force attack, and it’s your best bet if you remember nothing about your password. It will try all possible password combinations until it gets it right.
But, the feature that distinguishes this tool from others is the GPU acceleration boost. It enables PassFab for ZIP to harness the processing power of both your CPU and GPU (if you have one) to make an already fast process even faster.
Follow along as we perform a full analysis of this tool to find out if it performs as promised.
What is PassFab for ZIP
We have all been there. You set a password, and at that moment, it seems so obvious that you don’t imagine you would forget it. But you forget anyway. Unfortunately, unlike online accounts, ZIP archives don’t give you an option to reset your password.
It could also be that you downloaded a ZIP archive that was locked, and the owner forgot to include the password. Either way, you only have one choice. To use a ZIP password recovery tool. PassFab for ZIP is one such tool that will help you retrieve the password without damaging your archived files.
I carried out tests on this utility using different password combinations and made some interesting discoveries that I will be discussing later in this PassFab for ZIP review.
What I like (Pros)
- Easy to use
- Recovers your ZIP password faster than most alternatives
- Supports the acceleration of password recovery using GPU
- Three password recovery methods for increased effectiveness
- Supports all types of ZIP archives
- Compatible with all Windows versions
- Helpful support
- 30-day money-back guarantee
What I don’t like (Cons)
- It takes time to recover complex passwords
- Limited free trial
Is PassFab for ZIP Safe
Well, to start with, PassFab, the company in charge of creating this utility, is a well-known password recovery tool developer with a solid reputation built over ten years. You don’t last ten years in an industry unless you are doing something right.
Still, I scanned the software before installation, and it came out clean.
Also, you don’t have to worry that using PassFab for ZIP to recover your ZIP password will damage your archived files. In all our tests, our ZIP files remained the same after cracking the password.
Is PassFab for ZIP Free
PassFab for ZIP has a free version that will crack passwords not longer than four characters but, it won’t display the actual password unless you upgrade to the premium plan.
So, you can’t use the free version to retrieve your lost password. It’s only meant to prove that the utility works.
To upgrade, you can opt for any of these three plans.
- 1-month license – It costs $15.95 and works only on 1 PC
- 1-year license – It costs $19.95 for 1 PC
- Lifetime license – It costs $39.95 for 1 PC
I’m not sure about you but, in terms of value for money, any of the two other plans are better than the monthly license.
All premium plans come with a 30-day money-back guarantee but under specific conditions. For instance, the company won’t give you a refund if you change your mind after purchasing the tool and decide to use another product. You need to prove through screenshots and log files that the tool could not perform the intended function. If PassFab can’t help you resolve the issue, then they will issue the refund.
Now to the most important part.
Does PassFab for ZIP Work? Hands-on Testing
On its official website, PassFab for ZIP claims to help you recover your ZIP password instantly, no matter what types of characters or symbols your ZIP password contains. This is absolutely true but, there are some exceptions.
This is what I found out after testing the utility over 48 hours.
The tool performs exceptionally for all passwords that are four characters and below
For less complex passwords that don’t combine numeric, alphabets, and special characters, PassFab will take mere seconds to crack it.
For instance, it took only 5 seconds to crack this password.
Complex passwords that don’t exceed four characters will take a few more minutes to crack. It took me about 10 minutes to crack this password.
Passwords longer than four characters will take long to crack regardless of how simple they are
I tried to crack a zipped file with 12345 as the password, and 20 minutes later, the recovery process was still ongoing. It’s not a very long time, but it’s a very simple password. So, I decided to switch to the brute-force with mask attack method. I specified that my password only contained numbers, and that changed everything.
I cracked the password in 3 seconds. The same was true when I used the dictionary method to crack the password.
Next, I tried to crack a ZIP file with the password ianyshare. It cracked after about 30 minutes using the brute-force attack. Then I switched to brute-force with mask attack and specified that the password only contained lowercase letters, no special characters and that it began with I and ended with e. It took less than 10 minutes to crack.
Now you understand why we recommend that you start with these two other methods and only switch to the brute-force attack method if they are unsuccessful. It could end up saving your time.
It could take up to a week to recover a complex password that is longer than 4 characters
This one was a shocker. I was trying to crack a file with [email protected] as the password, and after waiting for almost 5 hours, I got impatient. So, I thought it would be a good time to test PassFab’s customer support.
The first question I asked was if there was a limit to the password length that can be recovered using their utility. After receiving my ticket, I was told I might have to wait 24-48 hours for a response, but it didn’t take that long to their credit.
Support came through in about 3 hours. PassFab for ZIP can recover passwords of any length unless you are using the brute-force with mask attack, in which case the password should not exceed ten characters.
Then I followed it up with another question enquiring how long I may have to wait to retrieve my password. According to support, it can take up to 6 days to find a 5-digit password. They then pointed out that the software is still working to retrieve your password as long as no error message pops up.
This information is important because if you buy the tool expecting instant recovery then you may end up thinking the tool is not working when it takes too long. However, the truth is if the password you are trying to recover is long and complex, you will need to exercise a little patience.
And on the upside, support also said that a 4-digit password takes about 6 hours to crack, but it only took 10 minutes for me to crack the most complex four-character password I could think of. The 6-day estimate may turn out to be significantly lesser.
How to recover your ZIP password using PassFab for ZIP
Step 1. Add the ZIP archive to PassFab for ZIP by clicking the Add button. This will open Windows Explorer. Navigate to where the archived file is stored and open it.
Step 2. Choose the password attack method you want to use. I recommend you start with the Dictionary attack just in case the ZIP password can be found in the inbuilt dictionary. If that fails and you have some details about your password like character combination or length, switch to the brute-force with mask attack. If none of the above works, use the brute-force attack.
Step 3. Start the scan process by clicking the Start button. Now, wait as PassFab for ZIP works to recover your password.
Where to Download PassFab for ZIP?
PassFab for ZIP is available for download on their official website. Just click the buy now button, choose your preferred plan, fill in your payment details and you are done.
You will also find the utility in other unofficial websites, but we don’t recommend downloading it from there as you risk infecting your computer with malware.
Alternatives to PassFab for ZIP
KRyLack is another great ZIP password recovery tool you can use. Although a bit cluttered, the tool’s UI is well labeled to make it easy to use and provides three ways to crack your password. Brute-force, brute-force with mask, and dictionary attack. The tool supports all types of ZIP archives and can be installed on all Windows versions. KRyLack also saves the scanning progress so that you don’t have to start the process from the beginning if it closes unexpectedly.
This is a great PassFab for ZIP alternative, thanks to its perfect balance between functionality and price. The tool comes with an additional method to help you crack your password called Smart that increases your chances of finding your password quicker.
The tool does not support the acceleration of the recovery process by using a GPU but it supports a multi-core CPU. iSunshare automatically saves scan progress allowing you to continue from where you left in case the program shuts down accidentally.
Another ZIP password recovery tool you can use is Passper which comes with four recovery methods. Apart from the usual three, it adds the Combination method which allows you to define the specific characters that will be used to create possible password combinations. The program’s interface has also been decluttered to make it easy to use and at only 3mbs, Passper is a lightweight utility that won’t overload your CPU. This tool also saves your scanning progress, allowing you to continue the recovery process if it shuts down unexpectedly.
PassFab for ZIP is one of the top recommended solutions to recover lost ZIP passwords, and hopefully, this review has helped you decide if it’s the perfect fit for you. Password cracking is a complicated process, but I would say PassFab for ZIP does a fantastic job.
Sure, some passwords won’t be recovered instantly. But that’s not because the tool is a scam. It’s because the password is a strong one that needs more time to crack.
And the good news is PassFab offers a 30-day money-back guarantee which allows you to request a refund if their services are not satisfactory.