[thelist] Retrieving password() field from a MySQL table

Bill Haenel mail at webmarketingworx.com
Tue Jan 21 08:08:14 CST 2003

> > resetting a forgotten password to something new and then
> emailing that
> > to the user is the best approach.
> if you have ever changed your email ids, this method fails
> spectacularly

I want to thank everyone who replied to my question. I have gotten much
more of an expanded education than I hoped for. Nice thing about evolt
-- you always get to hear more than one side. This is one of those
issue, I think, where there is no perfect solution, but rather a series
of imperfect ones. When this happens, for the benefit of the visitor I
usually tend to try to offer them more than one option.

Anyway, after reading all of this, I have decided to go with such a

1. We will continue to encrypt passwords. Although at the moment there
is no personal info at stake in the system we're building, there may be
as time goes by and we decide to expand. So allowing admins to view
passwords is probably unethical.

2. We will offer the opportunity for a user to read a password "hint",
which they store upon registration. The hint will not be allowed to
contain the password itself.

3. We will provide a means for resetting and emailing a new password to
those who are not able to remember their old one after viewing their

4. We'll provide a link/form to request support. When someone uses this
to report a lost password we'll deal with those issues on a case-by-case
basis. The first two methods should filter out a great many requests for
assistance, I would think, so requests may be kept at a minimum.


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