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Old 12-23-2006, 04:35 AM   #1
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: New Zealand
Distribution: Fedora 17 64bit (Desktop) Fedora 15 (Laptop)
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Wink wpa_supplicant confused on psk="secret password"

Hi all

When configuring wpa_supplicant.conf one of the entries for using wpa is


If my router is set as wpa pre-shared key and as an example the router has:

WPA Shared Key: jackandjill

Is this what I enter into the wpa_supplicant.conf file, like,


or am i meant to use :wpa_passphrase Gimmee jackandjill

and use the long key that is output from this into


Just a bit confused on this part. Can access my router with no encryption no worries but am still struggling to get wpa_supplicant to work. I think I might need to uninstall it and do a fresh compile and make sure the config file is set properly when I do make install.

Anyway thanks for any help on this query.


Old 12-23-2006, 05:16 AM   #2
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The wpa_supplicant installation adds a README file and sample configurations under the /usr/share/doc/packages/wpa_supplicant directory. Your distro may have a device configuration program where you can enter the key in the form that you want.
sample config from the wpa_supplicant man page on the web:
# allow frontend (e.g., wpa_cli) to be used by all users in 'wheel' group
# home network; allow all valid ciphers
        psk="very secret passphrase"
So I think that you just need to enter the same passphrase in your wpa_supplicant.conf file's psk="passphrase" entry as you have in your router's config.

What I did is use a oneliner to create a 32 byte random key ( 64 hexidecimal digits ). That would be a lot harder to guess.

dd if=/dev/random bs=32 count=1 2>/dev/null | od -t x2 | sed -e '3d' -e 's/^.\{8\}//' -e 's/ //g' | tr -d '\n' ; echo
Then I use this to configure the router and all the computers.

Last edited by jschiwal; 12-23-2006 at 05:18 AM.
Old 12-23-2006, 06:05 AM   #3
Registered: Jul 2006
Location: New Zealand
Distribution: Fedora 17 64bit (Desktop) Fedora 15 (Laptop)
Posts: 98

Original Poster
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Hey there jschiwal

Thanks for that. I like the one liner you gave me. That should be great and clears up things for me a little. Will give it another try. At the moment I have just left my wpa-psk enabled on the router but am using windows to log, argghh. Been trying a couple of weeks now on and off when I get a chance in this busy season to sort it but no luck as yet.

Not giving up yet.




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