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Hash Value Bit Counts

A MD5 hash value is described as a 128 bit value and a SHA-1 hash value is a 160 bit Value. Why are these values assigned to them?

Each is is composed of hexadecimals. Every hexadecimal is composed of 4 bits or half a byte. A MD5 hash value will have 32 alphanumeric characters or hexadecimals. 32 times 4 equals 128. A SHA-1 hash value Is composed of 40 hexadecimals. 40 times 4 is 160.

A hexadecimal can be any number from 0 to 9 or any letter from A to F. it’s well known that bytes are comprised of 0’s and 1’s. The range runs from 0000 0000 to 1111. Hexadecimal represents these values from 00 to FF.

So so the hash value:


Can also be be represented as:



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