Not infrequently, we receive questions asking for help (meaning a solution) with finding the preimage for a hash function. Typically they ask for help "decrypting" a given hash value.
The available reasons for closing an off-topic question are:
Requests for analyzing ciphertext or reviewing full cryptographic designs are off-topic, as the results are rarely useful to anyone else and/or would be too long for this site.
Requests for literature, software or similar recommendations are off-topic here. For details, see: Do we want “literature recommendations” and similar “list/subjective questions”?
Programming questions are off-topic even if you are writing or debugging cryptographic code. Unless your question is specifically about how the cryptographic algorithm, protocol or side-channel (mitigation) works, you should look into asking on Stack Overflow instead.
This question belongs on another site in the Stack Exchange network
Other (add a comment explaining what is wrong)
With most of the pertinent questions that are closed citing the "analyzing ciphertext" reason.
As many users have noted many times on the site, hashing is not encrypting, the output of a hash function is not a "ciphertext", computing a preimage is not "decrypting", etc.
Could we have "requests to find hash preimages" included in the off-topic close reason that mentions analyzing ciphertext and reviewing full cryptographic designs? The proposed text would read something like:
Requests for analyzing ciphertext, finding hash preimages, or reviewing full cryptographic designs are off-topic, as the results are rarely useful to anyone else and/or would be too long for this site.
This is a minor change that would simply make the close reason more accurate.
Please vote on your preferred formulation during the next 7 days and / or add your own.
As a reminder:
+1 -> "I really like this formulation"
+0 -> "Meh, it's ok I guess"
-1 -> "I really dislike this formulation and don't want to see it"