A faster PBKDF2 for Python

I came across a blog post titled "PBKDF2: performance matters" where the author discusses how most implementations of PBKDF2 are slower than it otherwise could be.

After reading the blog post, I decided to write some Python bindings to see how much of a performance increase I can obtain over the standard library's hashlib.pbkdf2_hmac implementation. My goal is a library with an interface that is compatible with hashlib.pbkdf2_hmac.

The results are surprisingly good. With a basic benchmarking script on CPython 3.4.1, my implementation is about 3 times as fast as the standard library.

$ ./bench.sh
Benchmark hashlib...
100 loops, best of 3: 60.2 msec per loop
Benchmark fastpbkdf2...
100 loops, best of 3: 20.3 msec per loop

With PyPy 2.6.0, the results are even better.

$ ./bench.sh
Benchmark hashlib...
100 loops, best of 3: 242 msec per loop
Benchmark fastpbkdf2...
100 loops, best of 3: 19.2 msec per loop

I have since release my library as a PyPI package and the code is available on GitHub.

Simply install the package with pip,

pip install fastpbkdf2

and import the function

from fastpbkdf2 import pbkdf2_hmac

The interface is exactly the same as hashlib.pbkdf2_hmac and should be a drop-in replacement.

If you have any feedback or notice any errors in the post, I'd love to hear from you. You can find various ways of contacting me at the about me page!