Aug 25, 2011
I recently bought a notebook PC, and was quite annoyed to find that Intel has magically removed the ability to change the Centrino N 130 wireless adapter's MAC address.Before the nutters get in here with accusations of "illegal" activity, I feel obligated to point out that there is nothing "illegal" about changing the MAC address on my own property. Briefly, I want to pose my notebook as a hypothetical attacker, trying to bump one of my other wireless devices off the router by assuming its MAC address. I don't really know what would happen if I did this, because, like I said, Intel artificially crippled the Centrino N 130 through its Windows 7 drivers. Rather paternalistic of them.Another benefit of the proposed experiment: showing the futility of MAC filtering in keeping out the "bad guys." I have been convinced of this for some time, but been simultaneously unable to demonstrate it to my own satisfaction. There is no substitute for actually trying something, rather than just reading about it.
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I am also a little annoyed at the Centrino N's (lack of) performance. I have yet to have it connect at greater than 72 Mbit/s, even while sitting less than 10 feet from the router with a clear line of sight.FWIW, my router is a NetGear WNR3500v2. N wireless is enabled. As far as I know, this router is capable of supporting a full 300 Mbit or so 802.11n wireless connection, as long as the wireless NIC on the other end is doing its part (which mine doesn't).With all that in mind, can someone suggest an N-capable wireless NIC that is not purposely crippled by its manufacturer? I would prefer an internal mini-PCIe card, but Intel seem to be the only ones making those. Even a G-capable or USB device would probably serve the purpose, if that's all that's available.