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How can you discover who is connected to a wifi network near you? (you not being connected to it).

I know that some tools can scan your own network, and that some tools like Wireshark can monitor packages (and you can see the MAC addresses of these packages). But what I want to find is a tool that is command-line based for networks where I don't belong.

Is there any simple kismet or nmap command to output this information?

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marked as duplicate by slm, Anthon, Patrick, jasonwryan, Thomas Nyman Nov 14 '13 at 6:06

This question has been asked before and already has an answer. If those answers do not fully address your question, please ask a new question.

See my answer to that Q&A, it's not possible w/o joining the network to see clients of said network. The only other method would be to induce the clients into sending you a "hello" wifi packet by acting as an access point yourself. That is what Kismet is for. – slm Nov 13 '13 at 21:29
If we capture passively the wifi packages and analyze them, would we be able to see where they are coming from and where they are going to? I suppose the MAC addresses have to be there. – juanro Nov 13 '13 at 23:07
I would expect you'd be able to see the MACS and he various handshaking that needs to occur, prior to a client joining an AP. – slm Nov 13 '13 at 23:11

1 Answer 1

My answer to this SF Q&A, titled: Find wifi enabled devices [stations] around

You can use a tool such as kismet,, to scan for wireless networks. I believe it can show you all wireless devices in your vicinity without having to have the devices being actively connected to same network.

   kismet example

This post should give you a rough idea of how to accomplish the scanning of the network using Kismet.

Also as a side note you can use this tool, fing,, to find out all the MAC addresses of the devices on your network.

% sudo fing

    fing example

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