Iwconfig is another wireless tool that is hopefully present on your distro. Unlike iwlist, iwconfig can be used to actually set parameters in a wireless card rather than just look at their settings.
To use iwconfig, open a terminal window and type:
This shows me the following. Your system may vary:
- lo no wireless extensions.
- eth0 no wireless extensions.
- wlan0 IEEE 802.11b+ ESSID:”driveon” Nickname:”acx100 v0.2.0pre8″
Mode:Managed Frequency:2.442 GHz Access Point: 00:06:25:9A:50:C8
Bit Rate:1 Mb/s Tx-Power:18 dBm Sensitivity=187/255
Retry min limit:7 RTS thr:off
Link Quality=54/100 Signal level=39/100 Noise level=1/100
Rx invalid nwid:0 Rx invalid crypt:0 Rx invalid frag:0
Tx excessive retries:0 Invalid misc:0 Missed beacon:0
- sit0 no wireless extensions.
lo is my local adapter and it shows that it’s not wireless
eth0 is my wired ethernet card and it shows that it’s not wireless
wlan0 is my wireless card and it shows that it is wireless – good!
sit0 stands for ‘simple internet transition’ but that’s all I know about it. In any case – it’s not wireless.
I highly advise typing man iwconfig to get complete information on everything that can be done with the iwconfig command, but here are some of the more common commands you may want to use:
- iwconfig wlan0 enc < key >: Sets the WEP encryption key to < key >
- iwconfig wlan0 mode managed: Sets the mode to managed
- iwconfig essid driveon: Sets the ESSID/SSID to ‘driveon’
- iwconfig channel 7: Sets the card to use channel 7
Note that you can put all these commands together, as in:
- iwconfig wlan0 enc
mode managed essid driveon channel 7
Note that iwconfig is used to set the parameters of the card, it does not bring the card ‘up’ for use. You must use the command:
ifconfig wlan0 up
Ifconfig is the subject of a future entry. Stay tuned!