Examples of block ciphers
Some examples of block ciphers:
AES block cipher (Rijndael block cipher)
Blowfish block cipher
CAST5
DES
IDEA
RC6
Serpent
Triple DES
Twofish
AES block cipher (Rijndael block cipher)
Rijndael is a block cipher, designed by Joan Daemen and Vincent Rijmen as a candidate algorithm for the AES. AES stands for Advanced Encryption Standard. AES is a symmetric key encryption technique which will replace the commonly used Data Encryption Standard (DES). The Advanced Encryption Standard algorithm approved by NIST in December 2001 uses 128bit blocks. The block cipher currently supports key lengths of 128, 192, and 256 bits. Each encryption key size causes the algorithm to behave slightly differently, so the increasing key sizes not only offer a larger number of bits with which you can scramble the data, but also increase the complexity of the cipher algorithm.
Blowfish block cipher
Blowfish is a symmetric encryption algorithm designed in 1993 by Bruce Schneier as an alternative to existing encryption algorithms. Blowfish has a 64bit block size and a variable key length  from 32 bits to 448 bits. It is a 16round Feistel cipher and uses large keydependent Sboxes.
Blowfish is similar in structure to CAST128, which uses fixed Sboxes.
CAST block cipher
CAST stands for Carlisle Adams and Stafford Tavares, the inventors of CAST. CAST is a popular 64bit block cipher which belongs to the class of encryption algorithms known as Feistel ciphers.
CAST128 is a DESlike SubstitutionPermutation Network (SPN) cryptosystem. It has the Feistel structure and utilizes eight fixed Sboxes. CAST128 supports variable key lenghts between 40 and 128 bits.
CAST128 is resistant to both linear and differential cryptanalysis. Currently, there is no known way of breaking CAST short of brute force. CAST is now the default cipher in PGP.
Data Encryption Standard (DES) block cipher
Digital Encryption Standard (DES) is a symmetric block cipher with 64bit block size that uses using a 56bit key.
In 1977 the Data Encryption Standard (DES), a symmetric encryption algorithm, was adopted in the United States as a federal standard.
DES encrypts and decrypts data in 64bit blocks, using a 56bit key. It takes a 64bit block of plaintext as input and outputs a 64bit block of ciphertext. Since it always operates on blocks of equal size and it uses both permutations and substitutions in the algorithm. DES has 16 rounds, meaning the main algorithm is repeated 16 times to produce the ciphertext. It has been found that the number of rounds is exponentially proportional to the amount of time required to find a key using a bruteforce attack. So as the number of rounds increases, the security of the algorithm increases exponentially.
RC6
RC6 is a symmetric block cipher derived from RC5. It was designed by Ron Rivest, Matt Robshaw, Ray Sidney, and Yiqun Lisa Yin to meet the requirements of the Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) competition. RC6 encryption algorithm was selected among the other finalists to become the new federal Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).
SEED
SEED is a block cipher developed by the Korea Information Security Agency since 1998. Both the block and key size of SEED are 128 bits and it has a Feistel Network structure which is iterated 16 times. It has been designed to resist differential and linear cryptanalysis as well as related key attacks. SEED uses two 8x8 Sboxes and mixes the XOR operation with modular addition. SEED has been adopted as an ISO/IEC standard (ISO/IEC 180333), an IETF RFC, RFC 4269 as well as an industrial association standard of Korea (TTAS.KO12.0004/0025).
Serpent
Serpent is a very fast and reasonably secure block cipher developed by Ross Anderson, Eli Biham and Lars Knudsen. Serpent can work with different combinations of key lengths. Serpent was also selected among other five finalists to become the new federal Advanced Encryption Standard (AES).
Triple DES
Triple DES is a variation of Data Encryption Standard (DES). It uses a 64bit key consisting of 56 effective key bits and 8 parity bits. The size of the block for TripleDES is 8 bytes. TripleDES encrypts the data in 8byte chunks. The idea behind Triple DES is to improve the security of DES by applying DES encryption three times using three different keys. Triple DES algorithm is very secure (major banks use it to protect valuable transactions), but it is also very slow.
Twofish block cipher
Twofish is a symmetric block cipher. Twofish has a block size of 128 bits and accepts keys of any length up to 256 bits. Twofish has key dependent Sboxes like Blowfish.
Twofish encryption algorithm was designed by Bruce Schneier, John Kelsey, Chris Hall, Niels Ferguson, David Wagner and Doug Whiting. The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) investigated Twofish as one of the candidates for the replacement of the DES encryption algorithm.
Block ciphers vs stream ciphers
Block ciphers
Block ciphers transform a fixedsize block of data (usually 64 bits) into another fixedsize block (possibly 64 bits long again) using a function selected by the key. If the key, input block and output block all have n bits, a block cipher basically defines a onetoone mapping from nbit integers to permutations of nbit integers.
Stream ciphers
A stream cipher consists of a state machine that outputs at each state transition one bit of information. This stream of output bits is commonly called the running key. The state machine is nothing more than a pseudorandom number generator. For example, we can build one from a block cipher by encrypting repeatedly its own output. Typically, more elaborate constructions are used for stream ciphers to obtain highspeed. The encryption can be implemented by just exclusivelyoring the running key to the plaintext message.
