[kismac] Re: Fun with KisMAC and AirportExtreme

  • From: Michael Rossberg <mick@xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: kismac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Fri, 2 Jan 2004 14:12:04 +0100

 Okay. I know the Broadcom - Airport Extreme - We will never give you
 a working driver for Linux - problem.  What is the status quo?

In addition to the Apple drivers that will work out-of-the-box, the IOXperts people are also working on both Broadcom and Atheros drivers. I think they're working on Atheros first (so far as I know, no drivers are currently available for MacOS X, and existing drivers are potentially portable from Linux or FreeBSD), but Broadcom is on the list.

i helped the atheros guys to port there closed source HAL to macos x. there will be a working version for kismac real soon (eg monday or tuesday). there is also an opensource driver coming up. john bellardo is the lead developer, and the code looks very nifty.
if ioxperts works on a broadcom driver, i dont know how useful another closed source driver would be :o(

 there people outside, workin' on it? (i.e. reverse engeniering
 windows-drivers ... ) I would like to join such a project, doing
 this. (reverse engeniering)

I'm not personally aware of any reverse engineering projects underway in this field. I have heard of some such projects for Broadcom chips under Linux, and I imagine those projects will probably come to fruition first. When they do, others will be able to take advantage of that. It might be best to contact some of those people and see if they know of any other similar projects for MacOS X (or projects to take their work and re-purpose under MacOS X).

there are a couple of guys who try to reverse engineer the bcm4301. <http://linux-bcom4301.sourceforge.net/> device registers might be similar.
ben herrenschmidt said something about him being interested <http://lkml.org/lkml/2003/11/20/19>

(I also would like to start such a project, if there's nothing out there)

Please let us know how this goes.

add a cvs account for me. i reverse engineered half of the atheros hal before ;o)

 It would be a very nice thing to have a full-feature compatibility
 between these two technologies...

The Broadcom and Atheros hardware is far more capable than any previous 802.11b stuff anyone has ever seen. Indeed, this is the cause of driver availability problems -- the FCC doesn't want people using software-defined radios (such as the Broadcom and Atheros stuff) to transmit or receive signals on anything but an extremely limited range of frequencies.

these atheros devices are really nice ;o) i have seen people using channel -18 to 26 with them =)

Otherwise, you could drown out radios for various emergency services, the police, the FBI, the US military, etc.... Alternatively, you might be able to use such hardware to listen in on their traffic, which I'm sure they feel is much, much worse.

i have some insider knowledge about the atheros hardware... only the radar of the military is affected and only on 5Ghz band. and i really do not care if they cannot use their toys and sniffing on their band is not possible as they do not use the same modulation.

So, the vendors have been keeping the tightest grip possible on the drivers, so that their customers don't go out and do something illegal, for which the companies would be held responsible.

i can confirm that. if you start such a project make sure you are aware of a couple of points.

1. make sure you do not wish to travel to the us soon. you would not be the first one, who gets in conflict with the DMCA.
2. you may get in trouble even in germany. a friend of mine got under a lot of pressure after releasing vt_ar5k...
3. these drivers are fairly complex. make sure you have a lot of time...
4. get yourself a gpg key

if you know of all that, let write me a mail and may be i can help you.


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