★ THE BLOG ★ Ramblings on WiFi & stuff.

REVIEW: AirTool 1.0


I've been beta testing a new app called AirTool from developer Adrian Granados for a few days. It finally went live today, so here is an overview of the app .

What does it does:

  • Select specific channels to perform a pcap on in 2.4/5GHz.
  • Select channel width
  • Capture on ALL 2.4/5GHz channels (hops through channels during pcap.)
  • Open pcap in Wireshark automatically upon stopping capture.
  • Visual indicator in task bar of channel/width

Best of all the app is FREE! 


Here is a link to make a donation via paypal. Let's help keep independent developers working!

REVIEW: Xclaim Xi-3 AP & Harmony App

Video: 9 minutes

Walk-thru of the Xclaim Harmony iOS app for managing your Xclaim APs. I wasn't that impressed, but this is a 1.0.x.x version and I expect improvements to future versions.

Estimated reading time: 2 minutes, 41 seconds. Contains 538 words


Some of my observations:

  • ChannelFly is weird. It almost never chose 1, 6, or 11. And, it changed channels several times an hour on both 2.4 and 5Ghz (actually, more like every few minutes.). I don't see that as a good thing for clients as they have to reconnect every time the channel changes. In theory, I can see that using non-standard channels could work, but changing so frequently will only frustrate users with random disconnects. Here's Ruckus' view on ChannelFly.
  • My 802.11ac iPhone 6 Plus never connected to 5Ghz on this 802.11ac access point. On my office AP, coffee shops, pretty much any AP I connect to, I'm on 5Ghz. But, not on the Xclaim. I still need to troubleshoot that, but it's really odd.
  • The Harmony app is really limited. Only basic setup and stats are available. A web interface has apparently been added in the latest AP firmware, but I haven't been able to upgrade. The Xclaim forums says you can reboot the AP, and that the AP checks every 24hrs, and notifies you an update is available. I have yet to see the alert. There is no option to update manually. 
  • Simplicity is a great thing, but sometimes it can go too far. I'm not opposed to keeping it simple, and I hope they can add some more features while still keeping the interface clean, and easy to understand. Also, I'd like to see Ruckus/Xclaim take advantage of the WLAN community to beta test, and give feedback. Seems to me that could have helped a lot with version 1.0. 

The only light on the AP is the one you see. It's either green, or red, and doesn't flash. It's a lightweight, plastic AP, that does not have the "feel" of quality. Also, this is an 802.11ac access point that my 802.11ac device could only connect to on 2.4Ghz.

MY  TAKE: In it's current state I can't recommend these APs. They are too limited in feature set (even compared to consumer products) and I'm not comfortable with the way ChannelFly makes channel decisions. 

My initial thought was to buy the AP, play around with it a bit, and then install it at one of the local coffee shops I frequent. I won't be doing that. I wouldn't feel right installing this for someone. I do believe that with Ruckus behind this they can make a great product, but I think it was put out too soon and feels like a beta product. Their Web site says "Big Wi-Fi" for small business. I'm not sure they are there... yet.

That's an awfully bold claim to make. Right now the reality does not match the hype.

That's an awfully bold claim to make. Right now the reality does not match the hype.

UPDATE: A fellow Tweep made an observation that I missed:

The only thing I can think of regarding this is that these APs are not intended for Enterprise use, but designed to cater to non-enterprise, and hotspot-based businesses. But, again, even consumer-grade WLAN routers support 802.1X.

Just a guess.


COOL TOOL: Quicksilver Remote-Host Plugin

Quicksilver Remote Host Plugin from Eddie Forero (@HeyEddie) on Vimeo.

One of all-time favorite apps is Quicksilver on Mac. It’s a fantastic tool for quickly launching apps, searching for files, etc. But, it’s soooo much more. With the additional plug-ins you have the powerhouse Swiss Army Utility Knife of OS X.

Here is one of my favorite plug-ins that I use EVERY DAY.

The Remote Host Plug-in. This plugin lets you easily SSH, RDP, VNC, etc. into any accessible device.

Get QuickSilver now!

Cellular Exploitation on a Global Scale

Wow, this is probably one of the worst security exploits in a series of recent massive security exploits. Matt Solnik at Accuvant Labs broke the news on this OTA exploit. This was a few months ago, but I’ve only really recently heard of it.

It’s possible to exploit bad carrier management client software and remotely compromise most smartphones on the planet. Seriously, scary stuff.

Here is the pdf of his slides

Listen to the Risky Business podcast where he talks about the exploit
(The interview starts at 29:15)

APs In Hallways - Don't Do It!

APs IN  HALLWAYS - DON’T DO IT!  -from Eddie Forero (@HeyEddie) on Vimeo.

*A caveat on the video:

These APs are using omni-directional antennas. This does not account for using some type of directional antenna, or putting real thought into the design. But, in reality, most hotel “designs” are just drop APs in hallways and crank up the volume.

Also, I recorded this in a coffee shop using a bluetooth headset, because when inspiration hits you move!