[arch-general] [rc.d/network] Integrate wpa_supplicant as wireless framework?

Philipp Überbacher hollunder at lavabit.com
Tue Nov 9 17:19:24 CET 2010

Excerpts from Gerhard Brauer's message of 2010-11-09 14:55:53 +0100:
> Hi,
> our current default wireless framework in base /e/rc.d/network
> script is iwconfig (Open/WEP only). I like to integrate
> wpa_supplicant as easy as we could use iwconfig ATM.
> iwconfig is a useless framework in most user environments in these
> days (most AP's have a stronger encryption than WEP'), but it is a
> "easy" tool.
> Two possibilities:
> a) Throw away iwconfig(wireless-tools package) from rc.d/network and
> use wap_supplicant only. wpa_supplicant could of course do all the
> things iwconfig is for.
> b) Let the user decide wihich wireless framework. This could be done
> by seperate /e/conf.d/wireless from wireless_tools and add therin
> config options for each iwconfig and wpa_supplicant.
> Ex.:
> --------------------
> #wlan_eth0="iw|eth0 mode managed essid default"
> #wlan_wlan0="wpas|<wpa_supp options -c /etc/wpa_supplicant.conf>"
> #WLAN_INTERFACES=(eth0 wlan0)
> -------------------------
> So /e/rc.d/network->wi_up() has to be modified to honor also
> wpa_supplicant.
> For both ways /e/wpa_supplicant.conf should get modified to a
> cleaner default config (Most comments and examples). We should
> provide a config file with activated entries for OPEN wlan and WEP
> connections (User has to modify WEP essid and key), and also a
> deactivated entry for common WPA2/PSK wlan(User has to modify and
> activate this for his/her needs).
> The advantage of using wpa_supplicant at least in addition to
> iwconfig is IMHO the easy and straightforward integration in our
> network settings (r.conf and conf.d/wireless). No need for extra
> packages like Netcfg, wicd, networkmanager to associate to WPA
> infrastructure (but could be used by users if they want their
> "funcionality"").
> What do you think about?
> Regards
>         Gerhard "gerbra"

I had trouble with wicd and looked for other solutions, and I really
wondered about the open/WEP thing, because it's imho rather useless.
Would any sane person still use WEP if they have WPA2 available, which
is most likely the case these days?
I now use wpa_supplicant directly and it works fine, but there seem to
be some troubles with dhcpcd (not running after boot, needs to be
re-enabled after switching network/interface, most of the time).
Well, maybe a little scripting can take care of that.

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