In other posts I have covered the step-by-step process on how to uncover a hidden SSID, both by just listening to the network channel, or by causing a de-authentication attack. In those articles I assumed that you already had a wireless USB adapter capable of going into monitor mode and also capable of injecting packets.
Unfortunately, not all USB wireless adapters are capable of doing this. The chipset and drivers that are written for a card is in essence what provides those features. There are number of options that are well-known for use with Kali Linux and Backtrack and the most popular chipsets according to Wirelesshacks in their 2018 poll is as follows:
In what follows I will put together my review of the best product I have found in the market, which is not on the above list and requires some configuration.
In order to monetize my freelance life without charging anyone I have added a link from my amazon associate account. As I have said previously, here and on my website, I only advertise products that I use myself. With that out of the way let's jump in into putting this network adapter to work out its magic.
This is a Kali supported Alfa Networks AWUS1900, which was used in the previous posts on how to uncover hidden SSIDs. For the more novice readers, this was wlan0 interface that showed up when we ran ifconfig.
The product comes with the following items out of the box as you can see below:
- 1 x AWUS1900 Wi-Fi Adapter
- 4 x Dual-band antennas
- 1 x USB 3.0 cable1 x Screen clip
- 1 x Installation DVD-Rom
- A consistent solution for network congestion
As you will soon discover this might not be a plug and play installation for Kali, and you may need to install some drivers and run some updates before you get it up and running.
We have seen previously that Airmon-ng launches the monitoring mode on the wireless interface (provided the network adapter is recognized).
It turns out, however, that sometimes Kali is not able to run in monitor mode because this driver is a mix between modern linux driver and old stuff. It has its own way of being put in monitor mode. It has its own way of being put in monitor mode. So let's start with a fresh Kali without the adapter being installed properly.
In the above image we can see that the alfa card has not been detected yet, so we will move on to Rokland Store to download the driver, which can be found in the support page, or you can go directly to the github repository by clicking here.
After we download the driver we extract the file and rename it rt (to make it easier to use in the command line).
The driver can be installed using DKMS and you can do so by launching the following command:
sudo apt-get install dkms
Now we have to navigate to the directory where we have the downloaded files. At this point you should already be able to navigate through the file system so I will not cover that here. We navigate all the way to /downloads/rt. In this location we will run the installation file described in the github page:
This step may take a while depending on your machines specs. Once this step is completed the driver installation should have been successful.
The next step is to hook up the device in a USB port and when you do so you should start seeing the LED light in the Alfa card flash. Now, when you check the connections available you will see that the wireless card is now available.
And that is it my friends. I am not associated with Rokland but they are definitely a great resource and a great deal of this content was only made possible because of the support they provide. I inserted a link to their store to show some appreciation to their work.