Association slow when configured with multiple networks?

Jouni Malinen jkmaline
Sat Aug 26 18:50:55 PDT 2006

On Mon, May 01, 2006 at 03:43:07PM +0100, David Ramsden wrote:

> Is it normal for wpa_supplicant to take a very long time to associate if
> there are multiple networks specified in the configuration? I have three
> networks in my configuration. Two are WPA-PSK and the other is WPA-EAP.
> What I'm experiencing is slow association with any network that's not at
> the top of my configuration file, which is a bit annoying. I'm not sure
> if this is a bug, a problem with my configuration or if it's "by design".

This is by design for ap_scan=2 mode.. In that mode, wpa_supplicant
relies on the driver doing AP selection and wpa_supplicant is just
trying each network one at a time. This will have to use relatively long
timeout since it can take a while for the driver to associate with an

In ap_scan=1 mode, wpa_supplicant would be requesting scan results
itself and then selecting the network based on them. With multiple
configured networks, this would mean that wpa_supplicant can select the
available network immediately regardless of the order the networks are

In theory, ap_scan=2 mode could be changed to do a scan if multiple
networks are configured and then use scan results to re-order the
association list. However, this would not work correctly if some of the
APs are using hidden SSIDs (i.e., would not show up in scan results in a
recognizable way).

Jouni Malinen                                            PGP id EFC895FA

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