How 2 find an SSID after you've connected to hidden SSID that shares the same hardware (MAC address)?

George S. Lockwood gslockwood
Sat Oct 14 19:47:06 PDT 2006

This is unfortunate.

Sounds like it might be useful to try unloading and reloading the
driver -if just as an experiement- but how is that performed?

On 10/14/06, Jouni Malinen <jkmaline at> wrote:
> On Thu, Oct 12, 2006 at 08:45:37AM -0700, George S. Lockwood wrote:
> > a) finding a certain broadcasted SSID.
> > b) connecting / authenticating to a hidden SSID of the same MAC address.
> > c) eventually disconnecting.
> >
> > What I find when I connect is the broadcasted SSID is no longer
> > detected and the once hidden SSID is.
> >
> > Further, once the connection with the once hidden SSID is ended, I
> > cannot detect either for about 10-15 minutes.  Then the broadcasted
> > SSID reappears.
> >
> > Is this expected behavior?  What can I do (at the disconnect??) to
> > again detect the broadcasted SSID?
> There is no standard definition for this behavior since both the hidden
> SSID and multi-SSID functionality were added to implementations without
> amending the IEEE 802.11 standard. In other words, prepare to
> implementation specific differences here..
> The behavior you described is indeed something that I would expect to
> see with some (but certainly not all) drivers. The driver in question
> seems to store scan results in a table index only by BSSID and not
> <BSSID,SSID> pair which would be more suitable to this kind of use case.
> The 10-15 minute time you mentioned is likely a timeout on the scan
> results. When the hidden SSID was configured in association request, the
> driver probed for that SSID explicitly and updated its scan results by
> replacing the SSID of the broadcast SSID with the hidden one. If the
> driver is doing this internally, there is not much you can do about this
> apart from unloading and reloading the driver.. I would expect you to be
> able to associated with the broadcast SSID by explicitly specifying it,
> but you would need to know it at that point.
> Other implementations (especifially cards that have been designed to
> work with Cisco APs) store scan results indexed with <BSSID,SSID> pair
> and allow multiple entries to use the same BSSID. These implementations
> should return all the found SSIDs even if they are using the same BSSID.
> In other words, you would first see only the broadcast SSID and after
> associating with a hidden SSID, both SSIDs would be visible in scan
> results.
> --
> Jouni Malinen                                            PGP id EFC895FA
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