Question on IBSS + RSN

Ben Greear greearb at
Tue Jan 17 17:57:53 PST 2017

I spent some more time debugging this today.

When reloading the driver (and restarting supplicant), sometimes I can get two
ath10k to talk IBSS + RSN, and others it fails.

I instrumented the firmware to dump some state on demand, and it shows the same AST entries
(where it stores pointers to the key data), and TIDs look similar as well
in both the good and failure case.  So, it doesn't seem that the issue is
lack of keys getting to the firmware.  Maybe the keys are wrong, but I am
not sure how I could tell that.

If I dump the actual key data for the peers, is that something I could
compare against supplicant logs and verify the right keys are hitting
the firmware?

Is there anything I could do in supplicant to make the keys less random
just to simplify testing (like make sure the hardware keys should always
be the same value??)


On 01/17/2017 01:26 PM, Ben Greear wrote:
> On 01/14/2017 04:02 AM, Jouni Malinen wrote:
>> On Fri, Jan 13, 2017 at 02:48:07PM -0800, Ben Greear wrote:
>>> Ok, seems I should focus on events around Authentication message then.
>> I was able to reproduce one related issue with mac80211_hwsim. This is a
>> bug that prevents wpa_supplicant from clearing the key when receiving
>> the Authentication frame from a peer. The patch below fixes that.
>> However, this resulted in hitting another issue within mac80211 where it
>> looks like the unicast frame from the re-joining STA gets lost in the RX
>> reorder buffer logic.. I'm not completely sure what causes that, but for
>> initial testing, using disable_ht=1 seemed to be a sufficient workaround
>> (i.e., disable QoS and reorder buffer logic for BA).
> I added this patch, but my systems still do not work well.
> When I tried to put the stations in 'a' mode to disable ht, then the
> association response is failing for some reason.
> Could you post an example of the config file you had that worked
> for you?
> Thanks,
> Ben
>> [PATCH] RSN IBSS: Fix TK clearing on Authentication frame RX
>> When wpa_supplicant was processing a received Authentication frame (seq
>> 1) from a peer STA for which there was already a TK configured to the
>> driver, debug log claimed that the PTK gets cleared, but the actual
>> call to clear the key was actually dropped due to AUTH vs. SUPP set_key
>> selection. Fix this by explicitly clearing the TK in case it was set
>> and an Authentication frame (seq 1) is received.
>> This fixes some cases where EAPOL-Key frames were sent encrypted using
>> the old key when a peer STA restarted itself and lost the key and had to
>> re-join the IBSS. Previously, that state required timing out the 4-way
>> handshake and Deauthentication frame exchange to recover.
>> Signed-off-by: Jouni Malinen <j at>
>> ---
>>  wpa_supplicant/ibss_rsn.c | 12 ++++++++++++
>>  1 file changed, 12 insertions(+)
>> diff --git a/wpa_supplicant/ibss_rsn.c b/wpa_supplicant/ibss_rsn.c
>> index 53d7d57..c29d8d3 100644
>> --- a/wpa_supplicant/ibss_rsn.c
>> +++ b/wpa_supplicant/ibss_rsn.c
>> @@ -838,6 +838,18 @@ static void ibss_rsn_handle_auth_1_of_2(struct ibss_rsn *ibss_rsn,
>>             MAC2STR(addr));
>>      if (peer &&
>> +        peer->authentication_status & (IBSS_RSN_SET_PTK_SUPP |
>> +                       IBSS_RSN_SET_PTK_AUTH)) {
>> +        /* Clear the TK for this pair to allow recovery from the case
>> +         * where the peer STA has restarted and lost its key while we
>> +         * still have a pairwise key configured. */
>> +        wpa_printf(MSG_DEBUG, "RSN: Clear pairwise key for peer "
>> +               MACSTR, MAC2STR(addr));
>> +        wpa_drv_set_key(ibss_rsn->wpa_s, WPA_ALG_NONE, addr, 0, 0,
>> +                NULL, 0, NULL, 0);
>> +    }
>> +
>> +    if (peer &&
>>          peer->authentication_status & IBSS_RSN_AUTH_EAPOL_BY_PEER) {
>>          if (peer->own_auth_tx.sec) {
>>              struct os_reltime now, diff;

Ben Greear <greearb at>
Candela Technologies Inc

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