[kismac] Re: Hawking H WU36D USB Adapter

  • From: Stroller <macmonster@xxxxxxxxxxxxx>
  • To: kismac@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
  • Date: Tue, 16 Aug 2005 23:07:20 +0100

On Aug 15, 2005, at 10:32 pm, Piotr Malecki wrote:

Check to see if there are Mac OS X drivers available for the adapter
you're going to buy before you do.
1) Airport Extreme
    - works in active mode

I read the OP as indicating that he already had Airport Extreme, or at least an AirportExtreme-capable iBook. Active mode is naff all use for sniffing encrypted networks, but IMO Airport Extreme (or a compatible Broadcom-based card for Powerbooks & PowerMacs that'll accept an expansion card) is the only recommendable 802.11g solution for actually connecting to & using a wireless network with a Macintosh.

3) D-Link DWL-122 (802.11b USB 1.1 Wifi adapter)
    - works in passive mode
    - quite inexpensive on eBay

Very good for this purpose & reason.

- has a Mac OS X driver and utility

which is completely useless for this:
- will not work after iBook wakes up from sleep - needs reboot
and other reasons. Look it up on Amazon.com & read the user reviews from dissatisfied Mac customers.

This device is simply brilliant for KisMAC packet-sniffing and utterly lame for anything else.

If I'm reading correctly that the OP has Airport Extreme, then this is absolutely the additional device he should buy for use with KisMAC, but for general-purpose use a genuine Airport (Extreme) card is only $30 more, and doesn't require the user to suffer flakey networking and a limp user interface.

2) D-Link DWL-G122 (802.11g USB 2.0 Wifi adapter)
    - 2 hardware revisions (rev B is based on the RALINK 2500 chipset
and supposedly works with a driver from the RALINK webpage.)

Ralink deserve a great deal of credit both for open-sourcing their Linux drivers and for releasing a Mac OS X driver, however I haven't seen any evidence that the latter is any good. If it's half as poor an Airport-substitute as D-Link's DWL-122 driver, then it's not worth the effort or the potential for hours of grief. Certainly the interface for detecting wireless networks & entering WEP keys is not a patch on Apple's one.

The Linux driver has had a great deal of community development, and Ralink-based _cards_ are an excellent purchase for Linux use, however USB adaptors are not yet supported, and I am not aware of any 3rd-party work on an OS X driver. I think that the potential of this chipset is massive and would be delighted if someone could write a .kext that would support it as an Airport-replacement through OS X's built in wireless GUI, but right now I see no reason to choose Ralink for Macintosh use. I actually have a number of these around the house right now - as well as a D-Link DWL-G122 I have a cheapo (CNet??) 802.11g USB adaptor, a couple of Belkin USB adaptors and a dozen or two Belkin PCI & Cardbus cards all using the same chipset, but after I loaded the Preference Pane for Ralink's driver on one of my Macs I found no interest in testing further, considering the cost of a real Airport card.


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