Wireless tools for Mac OS X

September 1, 2008

I’ve been having some trouble with my MacBook on a certain wireless network. OS X has some pretty good GUI tools for configuring the wireless Airport, but sometimes you need a good command line tool for debugging. Linux has a pretty good set of tools for this: Wireless tools for Linux. Despite OS X’s being built on Unix, no such tools are available.

Upon googling for command line wireless tools os x, the first hit was exactly what I was looking for. At the moment that site is down, but Google’s cache saves the day.

It turns out that OS X comes with a nifty little tool called airport, but it’s not on the default path and buried deep inside the file system. I added to my path:

% sudo ln -s /System/Library/PrivateFrameworks/Apple80211.framework/Versions/Current/Resources/airport /usr/sbin/airport

To print a list of wireless networks currently in range:

% airport -s

To print the current wireless status:

% airport -I

To connect to a specific network SSID:

% airport -A<SSID>

2 Responses to “Wireless tools for Mac OS X”

  1. The first command does not work in my Macbook, although I restarted my terminal. I am using the Al version with Leopard inside.

    Please, tell me how to get the command to work.

  2. nice one! thank you !

    also running airport /h will give you all other commands !

    good find