[kismac] Re: KisMAC is way buggy

  • From: Michael Rossberg <mick@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: kismac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Sun, 7 Mar 2004 20:05:53 +0100


i have been gone a couple of days, so let me just get some stuff straight. first of all i know kismac is buggy, reasons have been discussed in the past. The biggest problem is that I do not encounter a lot of errors, because i do not use all of the features in every version (SUID for an example). Bug reporting does lack from time to time like hell too, so i have no idea about all of the bugs - which i try to fix as soon as i can recreate them... i can recommend you to try to install always the latest internal built, which i announce from time to time on the list.
now to concrete points

KisMAC only records GPS coordinates for about 20% of the sites stumbled. This is based on over 3000 access points detected.
This only occurs with my Cisco Aironet 350 card. With a borrowed Prism 2.5 card, KisMAC works great -- records all GPS coordinates perfectly.
I reported this on the bugtracker months ago, but it was closed with a note "not reproducible".

like vinZ noted, the GPS system and the Driver system, are capsulated in different parts of KisMAC. such a behavior is most likely a coincidence and should not have any relation at all. i tried to reproduce it without any success, then i wrote the list, whether someone has this problem too - no response. i thought it was an error and closed the bug. if you or someone else has more details, please let me know.

KisMAC drivers don't seem to unload.
Notes: If I run KisMAC and scan and quit it, then I cannot get a connection through my Airport Extreme, Senao, or Cisco Aironet card. In fact, if I scan with KisMAC, quit KisMAC, relaunch KisMAC, it says that it can't load the driver. So basically if I scan with KisMAC, I have to reboot my machine afterwards.

Airport Extreme support does not load drivers at all. Did you use the SUID feature? there has been a bug which i recently fixed... otherwise let me know about your hardware configuration and please send me a copy of your system.log. also please let me know which other drivers you are running on the system. E.g. IOXperts...

KisMAC crashes or locks up moderately frequently.
KisMAC is more stable than it used to be (used to crash when I looked at it wrong). I can't exactly reproduce the crashes, but I can give you instances that increase the probability of a crash:.
(1) When resizing the KisMAC window, especially repeatedly.

never had this one..

(2) When resorting KisMAC lists (in previous versions, this would inevitably cause a crash).

the old problem, was due a linking problem on 10.2. it took me days to find out that there were people with this crash, cause no-one reported it, and i did only short tests on 10.2 (who thinks that qsort is in another library :o/)

(3) When the list gets over about 400 access points (very easy to do within 30 minutes in San Francisco).

strange. i have to admit, i never hat that many because over here i dont have that many aps around. maybe i should setup a fakeap sometime... someone else who has this problem and knows how to use a debugger?

(4) Switching between the list window and map window repeatedly or too quickly (this causes a freeze).

i messed with this code last week. can you get it to crash with the last milestone?

brad wrote:
I'd like to see a version of KisMac that provided more debugging output, preferably to a file. I'd be perfectly happy to be using a development version that is fully instrumented, so that I could give more details as to where problems may lie.

i am trying to integrate a debug menu as known from safari, the latest CVS version already includes GPS debug output, if you have more ideas of what you wish to have protocoled let me know. to enable debug mode execute: "defaults write org.binaervarianz.kismac DebugMode 1" and restart KisMAC.

I guess I got a little upset the other day when with high hopes I tried the latest KisMAC and it locked up, deleting 700 APs I had just recorded. ***takes deep breaths and meditates***

sorry for that one i guess....

Perhaps there is need for a shareware product, so that Mick can spend more than just his spare time on KisMAC. Just a thought.

i am not a friend of shareware. it would cost me a lot of energy to verify that nobody cracks it etc. apart from that people with money (e.g. non-students, non-pupils, but commercial institutions) can always donate money, which works actually pretty well. much more money, if i would sell KisMAC would exclude a lot of people, get me maybe a new powerbook and and would not make too much sense with GPL i guess. apart from this, it would not give me more time to spend with KisMAC, as i do not have to work for living. i spend only a lot of time for university, and money will not help me there i guess.
congrats if you read that far ;-)


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