I have recently installed backtrack on a VMWare box on my machine and I am trying to use DHCLIENT command but am having trouble in understanding the interfaces.

I am connected to the internet through wireless internet on my Mac but when I try and list all internet devices through backtrack, a WLAN doesn't show up,

# ip link show
1: lo: <LOOPBACK,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 16436 qdisc noqueue state UNKNOWN 
    link/loopback 00:00:00:00:00:00 brd 00:00:00:00:00:00
2: eth0: <BROADCAST,MULTICAST,UP,LOWER_UP> mtu 1500 qdisc pfifo_fast state UP qlen 1000
    link/ether 08:00:27:cd:c9:cf brd ff:ff:ff:ff:ff:f

I am curious to know why a WLAN isn't showing but an ethernet connection is? Is this because Backtrack think its connected through WLAN through my Mac's wireless? Secondly, what's the first device 'lo'?

1 Answer 1


The WLAN device doesn't show up because VMWare virtualizes the hardware. The hardware you see inside the virtualized OS is not the hardware of the host node. The 'lo' device the loopback device.

  • hmm ok, makes sense. So if I wanted to analyse my wireless network through backtrack, I wouldn't be able to ?
    – rusty009
    Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 17:49
  • 1
    It may be possible if the wireless device is USB and using USB passthrough.
    – jordanm
    Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 18:02
  • 1
    Or boot a live CD/DVD directly on the notebook.
    – schaiba
    Commented Mar 1, 2013 at 18:09

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