pcmcia wireless card decision
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Thread: pcmcia wireless card decision

  1. #1
    Junior Member
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    pcmcia wireless card decision

    Ok, here it is. I am currently looking to delve more into wireless security since I believe it is my weakest area of expertise along with a few other things. I just built out a beastly server to run VMware so that I can implement a sudo-enterprise network for testing/learning purposes. With that being said, I am trying to decide on what pcmcia wireless network card I should use to play with the wireless aspect of my network. I have a linksys access point and a netscreen 5gt wireless firewall that I plan on deploying in my network, but I still need to decide on what I will be using as a card for my host that I will be running attacks from. I plan on cracking weps, injecting packets, detecting the wireless network and it's settings, and whatever else I can to learn more. Initially, I was planning on getting a prism chipset card with an antenna. I don't really foresee any wardriving as this is primarily for practice. However, I am not entirely sure which pcmcia card I should purchase or even if a prism chipset is the right way to go (as opposed to a cisco, hermes, orinocco, or something else). Of course, I will be using either BSD or Linux as my host machine depending on the card (either OS is fine with me, I have no real preference). So, what direction should I take with this? Any advice would be greatly appreciated. Oh, and I apologize if I sound too newbish. I just started reading up on wireless security with the Wi-Foo book and I am only half way through so far. Again, thank you for any suggestions.
    \"Don\'t be quick to judge, you may not know the hardships people don\'t speak of...\"

  2. #2
    AFLAAACKKK!!
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    Well... For a card... if your not doing any war driving then I would think most cards should be fine...

    As for an OS I would definitly go with linux for this task...
    I am the uber duck!!1
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  3. #3
    Junior Member
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    Well, I plan on only really using it in my home. However, I am the type of person that prefers to go all out on this sort of thing just in case my intentions or needs change. What would your suggestion be if I were planning on using this as an audit tool. A situation where I would be using it for pen testing along with a couple of antennas and maybe an amplifier. I mostly want to try to make this purchase once. Also, any suggestions for a pair of cards to be used together? For man in the middle attacks and such. Thanks for the quick response too.
    \"Don\'t be quick to judge, you may not know the hardships people don\'t speak of...\"

  4. #4
    The Prancing Pirate
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    Yep, and for that you're going to need a Linux-compatible wireless card.

    eg. Belkin 802.11g 54 Mbps Wireless PCMCIA Card

    I found that card using Google's Linux search - search 1 and search 2.

    You might be better off running a live CD instead of a distro in VMware, because it would be faster - and there are already some pretty good pen-testing live CD's like Knoppix-StD, Auditor and PHLAK.

    Good luck!

    -jk

    [edit] Dang - I'm one post too late...
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  5. #5
    Junior Member
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    Cool, thanks for the advice. I plan on using VMware for miscellaneous OS servers running various services, not so much for my actual attacking machine.
    \"Don\'t be quick to judge, you may not know the hardships people don\'t speak of...\"

  6. #6
    The Prancing Pirate
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    kilroy - Oh, ok then.

    -jk

    Ps. Welcome to AO!
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  7. #7
    Banned
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    If you plan to be using linux, before you buy the wireless card make sure to check the version/revision to make sure the manufactuer didn't switch chipset on the model of card your planning to get. A lot of card manufactuers will release a card that has a prism(2/3/54g)/orinnoco/atheroes card but then they will revise the chip sets being sent out with the card to something like broadcom/TI. Its really easy to buy a card that you thought would be compatible or easy to install with linux to only run into a nightmare trying to get the full functions out of the card such as wep psk, wpa, monitor mode.

    My home pc has a hawkings 54g card that has a RA-link chip, it does monitor mode, packet injection(with a patched driver of course) which allows me to keep airodump running for live time monitoring of the network (I dont need to see to alful much to see when something is up) The next revsion of that same card has an acx111 chip which is a ti chip, and i never have got monitor mode to work correctly on one of those.

    http://www.linux-wlan.org/docs/wlan_adapters.html.gz has a decent list, but its slightly dated.


  8. #8
    Member
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    Oct 2002
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    I'm not advertising for DLink or anything, but for about $10 or $15 bucks you can get a DWL122. It's USB based, but the great thing about it is, there haven't been any chipset revisions to it AFAIK. Only downside is that it's a B card. about 6 months ago when I checked, I didn't see any G cards that could go into promiscuous mode. the DWL 122 works like a dream when used with the Auditor LiveCD.

    What I would do, is check the documentation of the specific tools you plan to use (i.e. Kismet, etc) and see what cards are listed in the documentation. Make a list of cards and then use the Manufacturers website and see if they provide links to Linux resources. Basically plan how big of a pain in the ass it's going to be.

    Also check what's availabe and how big your budget is. The best cards were the hardest to find in the area and I hate getting stuff shipped to me.

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