Want to check a file you downloaded for tampering? Want to verify a file on your system? Find out here **how to check and verify an MD5 checksum on a Mac** (as well as SHA, RIPMD or Whirlpool hashes, for example) using “md5”, “shasum” and “openssl”.

## First, Mix 5 Parts Strong Instant Coffee and 3½ Parts Washing Soda

Add water to the coffee-soda mix, of course, and some vitamin C concentrate if you please.

You’ve just made a developing agent for black and white film—*caffenol-c*.

Now that we know how to transform film negatives into pictures to hang on the wall with nothing but a trip to the supermarket, how about transforming any file into a hash code you can verify with nothing but a trip to macOS?

## How to Check an MD5 Checksum on a Mac

On Windows? How to Verify an MD5 (or SHA) Checksum on Windows 10/11

On Linux? How to Verify an MD5 or SHA Checksum on Linux

Time needed: 2 minutes

To generate and verify the MD5 checksum for a file or document on a Mac using macOS:

**Open Terminal.****Navigate to the folder that contains the file whose MD5 checksum you want to verify.****The direct route**: You can open Terminal right at a folder from Finder.**Type**`md5 <file>`

.**Dragging and dropping**: You can also type`md5`

, then drag and drop the file you want to check onto the Terminal window.**Press**`Enter`.

## How to Check SHA (SHA-1 and SHA-2/SHA 256) on a Mac

To check the SHA-1 checksum for any file on a Mac:

- Open Terminal
- Go to the folder that contains the file whose SHA checksum you want to check.
**The speedy way**: See above for fast folder navigation. - Type
`shasum <file>`

.**Different hashing function**: Use`shasum -a <algorithm> <file>`

, replacing <algorithm> with the desired function from the table below.**SHA-2 checksum example**: Type`shasum -a 256 Example.txt`

to generate the SHA-2 256-bit checksum for the file Example.txt. - Press
`Enter`.

Command | Hashing Function | Output |
---|---|---|

`1` | SHA-1 secure hash algorithm 1 (160 bit) | 40 digits 640ab2bae07bedc4c163f679a746f7ab7fb5d1fa |

`224` | SHA-2 224-bit secure hash algorithm | 56 digits 3606346815fd4d491a92649905a40da025d8cf15f095136b19f37923 |

`256` | SHA-2 256-bit secure hash algorithm | 64 digits 532eaabd9574880dbf76b9b8cc00832c20a6ec113d682299550d7a6e0f345e25 |

`384` | SHA-2 384-bit secure hash algorithm | 96 digits 7b8f4654076b80eb963911f19cfad1aaf4285ed48e826f6cde1b01a79aa73fadb5446e667fc4f90417782c91270540f3 |

`512` | SHA-2 512-bit secure hash algorithm | 128 digits c6ee9e33cf5c6715a1d148fd73f7318884b41adcb916021e2bc0e800a5c5dd97f5142178f6ae88c8fdd98e1afb0ce4c8d2c54b5f37b30b7da1997bb33b0b8a31 |

`512224` | SHA-512/224 truncated 512-bit secure hash algorithm | 56 digits c696f08d2858549cfe0929bb7b098cfa9b64d51bec94aa68471688e4 |

`512256` | SHA-512/256 truncated 512-bit secure hash algorithm | 64 digits bbd4c3ba8083657894efee31469b2bc43510f95f4ca81fe3045905e804aee90c |

Speaking of “hashing”: Where to Find the Hash Key ( # ) on a Mac Keyboard

## How to Verify an MD5 Checksum on a Mac: FAQ

### How can I quickly check the generated sum against the expected sum?

You can use diff to compare the computed output against the known expected checksum:

`diff <(md5 Example.txt) Example.txt.md5sum `

### Can I generate RIPEMD or Whirlpool checksums on a Mac?

Yes.

Using OpenSSL, you can generate checksums using a host of alternative hashing functions.

To verify MD5, SHA and other checksums using OpenSSL on a Mac:

- Open Terminal.
- Go to the folder that contains the file whose checksum you want to verify.
- Type
`openssl <algorithm> <file>`

(replacing <algorithm> with the algorithm from the table below and <file> with the filename).**RIPEMD checksum example**: Type`openssl ripemd160 Example.txt`

for the RIPEMD160 checksum for Example.txt. - Press
`Enter`.

Command | Hashing Function | Output |
---|---|---|

`md4` | Message-digest algorithm 4 128-bit | 32 digits 5d9381b52cd41a87bc8fcc7726aec03a |

`md5` | Message-digest algorithm 5 128-bit | 32 digits 0cbc6611f5540bd0809a388dc95a615b |

`sha1` | SHA-1 secure hash algorithm 1 (160 bit) | 40 digits 640ab2bae07bedc4c163f679a746f7ab7fb5d1fa |

`sha224` | SHA-2 224-bit secure hash algorithm | 56 digits 3606346815fd4d491a92649905a40da025d8cf15f095136b19f37923 |

`sha256` | SHA-2 256-bit secure hash algorithm | 64 digits 532eaabd9574880dbf76b9b8cc00832c20a6ec113d682299550d7a6e0f345e25 |

`sha384` | SHA-2 384-bit secure hash algorithm | 96 digits 7b8f4654076b80eb963911f19cfad1aaf4285ed48e826f6cde1b01a79aa73fadb5446e667fc4f90417782c91270540f3 |

`sha512` | SHA-2 512-bit secure hash algorithm | 128 digits c6ee9e33cf5c6715a1d148fd73f7318884b41adcb916021e2bc0e800a5c5dd97f5142178f6ae88c8fdd98e1afb0ce4c8d2c54b5f37b30b7da1997bb33b0b8a31 |

`streebog256` | GOST R 34.11-2012 streebog 256-bit hash function | 64 digits 3ebeae08f0adb274a578960a5fa71a9b561cb7659f2470fa5c86ae0df7275713 |

`streebog512` | GOST R 34.11-2012 streebog 512-bit hash function | 128 digits 823b923c466cba8969f74e6735be91b7a812474dec2c344bc1aa4dea61b7c379ef196b43d4aba5ebdc0b6ad3ab9d021f35ba2e6fe9fd099b9c4a1ac36095e146 |

`ripemd160` | RIPE Message Digest 160-bit | 40 digits 76c82682cd7af7e812e513fa0e7914ab40b842e0 |

`gost-mac` | GOST 28147 MAC algorithm | 8 digits 52efa915 |

`md_gost94` | GOST R 34.11-94 hash function | 64 digits a0b1e053dd3f177d90c7989ebf6db7aa3c963b2267b7d542a20476cc3e33a3f1 |

`whirlpool` | Whirlpool 512-bit hash function | 128 digits ac1c196e84b05d59faea639d0cccb6c16f7568e0943f4c94c648bd8eefe5cf3978f8d4f99b1426e4ce3c6fa40e17cf68d6b86d42246333569b963ff4579c6355 |

*(How to check MD5o on a Mac tested with macOS Sonoma 14.3, Ventura 13.4, Monterey 12.3 and Big Sur 11.3; first published May 2021, last updated March 2024)*