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Networking Updates For Linux 4.8, QCA9888 Added To ath10k

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  • #11
    Are there any new wireless cards that don't need BLOBs?

    The latest cards I was able to found without BLOBs are ath9k, and they were all made before 2013... And none support 802.11AC.

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    • #12
      Originally posted by coder111 View Post
      Are there any new wireless cards that don't need BLOBs?

      The latest cards I was able to found without BLOBs are ath9k, and they were all made before 2013... And none support 802.11AC.
      wifi ac always have firmwares, even in Atheros cards that until wifi n didn't have a firmware, after Atheros was bought by Qualcomm and they made wifi ac cards they decided to use firmwares.

      And before someone complains about people asking for FOSS drivers/firmwares in wifi saying they are nuts and that it's the same as with other devices like say GPUs or ethernet controllers, I'll say that without decent FOSS drivers we will never get mesh wifi or monitor mode or other pentesting, advanced or niche wireless features in wifi ac, and this pisses me off like A LOT.

      I've yet to find a wifi adapter I can use on wifi ac with Kali. I know that 99% of networks are still on wifi g or n at 2.4GHz, but if it goes on like this any wifi ac traffic cannot be pentested.

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      • #13
        Yeah, this pisses me off as well.

        I have been buying mini-pci ath9k adapters than can do 5 GHz + 802.11N on ebay for my laptops recently. Speed is good enough for me, and I want the flexibility...

        It's a damn shame that no new BLOB-free adapters are out there. American FCC doesn't help either with their latest regulation which effectively requires closed and protected firmware...

        I wish open-hardware was more successful. Hell, are there any open-hardware projects that do wifi?

        Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
        wifi ac always have firmwares, even in Atheros cards that until wifi n didn't have a firmware, after Atheros was bought by Qualcomm and they made wifi ac cards they decided to use firmwares.

        And before someone complains about people asking for FOSS drivers/firmwares in wifi saying they are nuts and that it's the same as with other devices like say GPUs or ethernet controllers, I'll say that without decent FOSS drivers we will never get mesh wifi or monitor mode or other pentesting, advanced or niche wireless features in wifi ac, and this pisses me off like A LOT.

        I've yet to find a wifi adapter I can use on wifi ac with Kali. I know that 99% of networks are still on wifi g or n at 2.4GHz, but if it goes on like this any wifi ac traffic cannot be pentested.

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        • #14
          Originally posted by coder111 View Post
          It's a damn shame that no new BLOB-free adapters are out there. American FCC doesn't help either with their latest regulation which effectively requires closed and protected firmware...
          That's a much bigger issue for opensource router firmwares, as with them you could simply set your router with regulations of Bolivia and then go around jamming aircraft radars or something.

          Thankfully most router manufacturers are giving lip service at most to that and while they claim their stuff is "locked down to prevent the installation of open source firmware to comply with bla bla bla" for now it's only a very mild limitation that is also easy to sidestep even if you want to flash the open firmware from its own web interface.
          If they go the hardcore way (Like in mobile) we are screwed in routers too, and if that happens I'm ONLY going to buy dumb access points, as there is no way in hell that I'm trusting a stock firmware to be safe and reliable.

          Also this applies to all other devices with wifi capability sold in the US.

          I wish open-hardware was more successful. Hell, are there any open-hardware projects that do wifi?
          No. Wifi hardware is a big fat bitch to design as you are generating something physical (radio waves) with the thing, it's not just a digital processor.

          Given the current speed of snowballing on open hardware, in the next years we will see if that catches up in the processor land with RISC-V, it's way too soon to talk about wifi, but Qualcomm is in RISC-V foundation too.

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          • #15
            Originally posted by starshipeleven View Post
            athk10 is the driver + firmware blobs for Qualcomm-Atheros wifi ac cards and routers. They added support for a new chip of theirs, called QCA9888.
            Thanks! I appreciate that. Sadly, those are not the droids I was looking for.

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            • #16
              Originally posted by Espionage724 View Post
              Not exactly, but my Acer laptop (Aspire VN7-572G) has a QCA6174 which is on some kind of swappable card (it isn't MiniPCI-E; not sure what it is)

              If I recall correctly, an old TP-Link card I had had some kind of Atheros chipset.
              Well good to see it's finally making it into consumer products! The card probably uses a M.2 slot, the laptop industry is standardizing on that.

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