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Thread: Best possible wireless adapter for Kali-linux (PCIE & USB)

  1. #1
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    Lightbulb Best possible wireless adapter for Kali-linux (PCIE & USB)

    I'd like to make a thread to, once-and-for-all end the 'What is the best wireless adapter?' debate.

    Currently I'm in the market for the best adapter, price is not a factor. I used to have one of these: Alfa AWUS036NH but the 1W version. I had an array of antennae and also a huge YAGI antenna. It worked beautifully.

    But I'm also looking for a good internal Laptop Wireless card that supports monitoring and injection etc. because I need something mobile. So I'm really in the market for 2 seperate cards.

    At the moment people seem to be talking about these 3 devices in particular:

    AWUS036H (older b/g version)
    AWUS036NH (newer b/g/n version)
    AWUS036NHA (newer b/g/n atheros version)

    I'm looking for an 'n' capable card obviously. So I'm kinda stuck between the NH and NHA adapters. I don't know which one is better. Some say that the NHA is a newer improvement over the NH but others say that there's no difference. Just a different chipset..

    So could we please end the topic once and for all on the new Kali-linux forums so those who don't mind throwing down 35€/£30/$45 on the best card you can get, can do so without regretting it later.

    P.S. I know for a fact that the NHR is apparently more trouble than it's worth. So I didn't mention it. Even if it seems to be the latest one available.

    P.P.S. I heard that there's a new card that is supposedly being released soon. If anyone knows anything about it, please do list it here. However I, (and I am sure most of us) are more interested in what already works and is fully stable.

    Thanks a lot for any replies at all

  2. #2
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    I just bought the AWIS036NHA and I'm having problems getting it working with kali linux. Has anyone sucessfully been able to get this adapter working?

  3. #3
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    The NHA has the AR9271 atheros chipset, which is plug and play with Kali.

    Make sure you have run the apt-get update and apt-get upgrade commands right after the initial install.

    Use wifite to troubleshoot your card. If everything is working, wifite will plow through WEP and WPA (handshake capture) as long as you are reasonably within range of your router.

    Quote Originally Posted by divide_by_0 View Post
    I just bought the AWIS036NHA and I'm having problems getting it working with kali linux. Has anyone sucessfully been able to get this adapter working?
    Last edited by clearday; 2013-05-07 at 12:19.

  4. #4
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    The NH uses rt3070 and the NHA ar9271 chipsets respectively.

    It is better focus more on the chipset rather than the vendor model. Just about
    any wifi card that uses the rt2800 source driver works pretty well and requires no additional tinkering with Kali. Google rt2800 to identify cards that use it.

    The NH is unbeatable in terms of range, but the NHA can deauth and grab handshakes more reliably in low db (decibel) situations (even as low as 10db) in my experience.

    Don't write off nano USB sized adapters. They are great for indoor testing and on outdoors, sometimes even rival their full sized cousins, unless of course your router is beyond the advertised range.

    You might be talking about the AWUSH052NH. Low yield forced Alfa to continue selling the 051NH version. No one seems to have a definite ETA for the 052NH availability.

    Quote Originally Posted by Leijonasisu View Post
    I'd like to make a thread to, once-and-for-all end the 'What is the best wireless adapter?' debate.

    Currently I'm in the market for the best adapter, price is not a factor. I used to have one of these: Alfa AWUS036NH but the 1W version. I had an array of antennae and also a huge YAGI antenna. It worked beautifully.

    But I'm also looking for a good internal Laptop Wireless card that supports monitoring and injection etc. because I need something mobile. So I'm really in the market for 2 seperate cards.

    At the moment people seem to be talking about these 3 devices in particular:

    AWUS036H (older b/g version)
    AWUS036NH (newer b/g/n version)
    AWUS036NHA (newer b/g/n atheros version)

    I'm looking for an 'n' capable card obviously. So I'm kinda stuck between the NH and NHA adapters. I don't know which one is better. Some say that the NHA is a newer improvement over the NH but others say that there's no difference. Just a different chipset..

    So could we please end the topic once and for all on the new Kali-linux forums so those who don't mind throwing down 35€/£30/$45 on the best card you can get, can do so without regretting it later.

    P.S. I know for a fact that the NHR is apparently more trouble than it's worth. So I didn't mention it. Even if it seems to be the latest one available.

    P.P.S. I heard that there's a new card that is supposedly being released soon. If anyone knows anything about it, please do list it here. However I, (and I am sure most of us) are more interested in what already works and is fully stable.

    Thanks a lot for any replies at all
    Last edited by clearday; 2013-05-07 at 15:08.

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by clearday View Post
    The NHA has the AR9271 atheros chipset, which is plug and play with Kali.

    Make sure you have run the apt-get update and apt-get upgrade commands right after the initial install.

    Use wifite to troubleshoot your card. If everything is working, wifite will plow through WEP and WPA (handshake capture) as long as you are reasonably within range of your router.
    Thanks - but I made a very important typo. It is the NHR I bought (sigh). I'm thinking about returning it for an NHA.

  6. #6
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    Addendum to post concerning internal cards: most internal mini-pci-e WiFi cards that comes with laptops already support aircrack if you're booting Kali natively (not from VM).

    If you're booting from VM, you need external USB WiFi, but you probably already know that.

  7. #7
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    To anyone reading this post about which card to get, the 1000mw or 2000mw rating Alfa advertises for the 036H and the NHR, this is because of the 9dbi antenna, not because of the card. To get the 2000mw rating, you will have to hack the CRDA file to allow you to specify the transmit power above 30. Then there's the possibility of burning out the card. If you do the googling, you will find that there is a lot more to wireless scanning than simply buying the most powerful card and the biggest antenna.

  8. #8
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    Hmmm well after reading all this I'm still pretty hung up about whether to get the NH or NHA adapter.
    I'll probably for the NH seeing as it's more mass produced and I know for a fact that it works, and also because I find that it's quite a bit cheaper.
    Even if it can deauth and handshake a lot better under lower range, I don't think that range will really be an issue that I will have to deal with. Especially using it on my own device.

    So it looks like the NH for me. Even if we didn't get to the bottom line at least I know a bit more about what choice I am going to be able to make.

  9. #9
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    i got the 4 models nhr,nha,51nh(that is dual-band)and 36h and iam useing the nha daily with no issues was plug n play the 51nh(dual-band) was plug n play the nhr is the biggest headacheyou ever buy and the 36h is the jewel who startted this but is becoming slow.

  10. #10
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    2013-Jul
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    I've tried several adapters including a Linksys WUSB600N that uses the rt2800 driver and a TP-Link TL-WN722N that has the AR9271 chip set and ath9k driver neither of these adapters work properly in Kali but they work in Backtrack5. So far I haven't found anything that Kali likes and I did run the apt-get upgrade in Kali and it still didn't help.

  11. #11
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    i have both the 036h and 036nha, both work in kali with no faffing about. i also just brought a new internal card a atheros ar5008e which is dual band, to replace my rt73. it works beautifully but i must dmit i have not tried 5gz with it yet.

  12. #12
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    Nhr is no good. Took the same mistake and returned it for the 036H. Works well now

  13. #13
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    Best WLAN 802.11 a/b/g/n for kali?

  14. #14
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    Currently I have a WLAN 802.11 a/b/g/n WiMaX Card and it works fine with Kali on my hard drive, but not in vmware player. Any ideas why?

  15. #15
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    Just go with the AWUS036H. Make sure you buy from a legit seller though, there are a bunch of fake cards that don't work. The 036H is the best because it is HIGHLY supported by linux and has very good injection rates.

  16. #16
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    Quote Originally Posted by soxrok2212 View Post
    Just go with the AWUS036H. Make sure you buy from a legit seller though, there are a bunch of fake cards that don't work. The 036H is the best because it is HIGHLY supported by linux and has very good injection rates.
    Does this work with VMware? Also could you link a seller if you have one? I just bought a Netgrear 3100 and I am hearing so much stuff about using NDIS wrapper. Currently there are no tutorials to get this to work with kali so I'm stuck.

  17. #17
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    Quote Originally Posted by clock View Post
    Does this work with VMware? Also could you link a seller if you have one? I just bought a Netgrear 3100 and I am hearing so much stuff about using NDIS wrapper. Currently there are no tutorials to get this to work with kali so I'm stuck.
    Yes, you just need to disconnect it from the host and connect it to the guest. http://www.vmware.com/support/ws45/d...es_usb_ws.html
    The AWUS036H is plug n play meaning you just plug it in and it works... I got mine from DBROTH... http://www.amazon.com/Alfa-AWUS036H-...words=awus036h

    I'm not sure about the Netgear WNDA3100... I'm assuming you have a v2 of the adapter which is not supported by linux because it uses an unsupported broadcom chipset... http://wikidevi.com/wiki/Netgear_WNDA3100v2 However, the v1 may be supported because it has an atheros chipset... http://wikidevi.com/wiki/Netgear_WNDA3100v1
    If you have a v1, try reading this http://wireless.kernel.org/en/users/Drivers/carl9170

    Good luck!

  18. #18
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    In my opinion, if you're hoping to run Kali on Macintosh hardware, forget about Alpha products. Their drivers are garbage (on OSX at least). My suggestion is to not waste your time fighting with drivers and get a dongle from another manufacturer.

  19. #19
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    Quote Originally Posted by soxrok2212 View Post
    Yes, you just need to disconnect it from the host and connect it to the guest. http://www.vmware.com/support/ws45/d...es_usb_ws.html
    The AWUS036H is plug n play meaning you just plug it in and it works... I got mine from DBROTH... http://www.amazon.com/Alfa-AWUS036H-...words=awus036h

    I'm not sure about the Netgear WNDA3100... I'm assuming you have a v2 of the adapter which is not supported by linux because it uses an unsupported broadcom chipset... http://wikidevi.com/wiki/Netgear_WNDA3100v2 However, the v1 may be supported because it has an atheros chipset... http://wikidevi.com/wiki/Netgear_WNDA3100v1
    If you have a v1, try reading this http://wireless.kernel.org/en/users/Drivers/carl9170

    Good luck!
    Thanks for all your help. In the end I was only able to get the netgear to work by bridging. Which does me no good because it can not be used in kali for airmon or aircrack-ng that sort of thing. Anyway thank you for your time and I will purchase that Alfa you posted. I will let you know how it goes!

  20. #20
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    Hi guys is there some news about the best external anthenna? I am looking a versatile anthenna. Thank you in advance.

  21. #21
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    I made a page a while back that compares three of the popular alfa cards, the 36H, the 36NH, and the newer 36NEH as well as the TP-Link TL-WN722N (all with detachable antennas). They are compared on their receive sensitivity mostly, and allows you to see how they fare against each other. There has been some interest expressed for me to add some new cards and I have been considering this. The 51NH, the 36NHA, the 36NHV all look like good candidates. I have been kind of waiting to see what kind of support the NHV gets to do this. What do you think, would it be a useful addition?
    The original page is at http://rooftopbazaar.com/wirelesscards/
    Last edited by Joycelyn; 2014-10-25 at 19:41.

  22. #22
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    good work joycelyn!

    I have the following adapters connected to an outdoor antenna with an indoor 5W wifi amplifier



    1.AWUS036NH

    Good packet injecter

    Strong Signal Strength for most AP

    Connects to most access points

    Was not able to connect to some access points despite excellent signal strength

    Generates alot of heat

    about 20-25 AP detected with direct connection to amplifier (no cabling)

    plug n play in kali and bt 5 r3/Kali Linux



    2.AWUS036NHA (my favourite)

    excellent packet injecter

    most access points had moderate signal strength but was able to connect to Most AP that had weak signals (-91dBm)

    Generates less heat

    Works well with a 5W wifi amplifier

    about 26-31 AP detected with direct connection to amplifier (no cabling)

    plug n play in kali and bt 5 r3/Kali Linux
    Did not break after using it for approximately 2 years (24/7 use!)
    did not fail when i used a splitter to attach another wifi adapter to the same outdoor antenna (all the others failed,except 036nh)


    3.TP-LINK WN 722N (USB)

    needs to be connected directly to an antenna, cabling between adapter and amplifier seems to affect how much APs is detected

    recently bought an rp-sma to sma adapter for direct connection that is, no cabling, was able to pick up

    about 15-18 AP detected with direct connection to amplifier (no cabling)

    WITH CABLING between adapter and amp 2-3 AP dectected!

    plug n play in kali and bt 5 r3/Kali Linux



    4. COMFAST (AR9271) USB DONGLE ( made in china?!)

    excellent packet injector

    i am amazed how fast this adapter hops channel when using reaver without a channel option

    picked up the same no. of AP as the awuso36nha and also connects well to APs that had week signals (as weak as -96dbm!)

    plug n play in kali and bt 5 r3/Kali Linux

  23. #23
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    Quote Originally Posted by Joycelyn View Post
    I made a page a while back that compares three of the popular alfa cards, the 36H, the 36NH, and the newer 36NEH as well as the TP-Link TL-WN722N (all with detachable antennas). They are compared on their receive sensitivity mostly, and allows you to see how they fare against each other. There has been some interest expressed for me to add some new cards and I have been considering this. The 51NH, the 36NHA, the 36NHV all look like good candidates. I have been kind of waiting to see what kind of support the NHV gets to do this. What do you think, would it be a useful addition?
    The original page is at http://rooftopbazaar.com/wirelesscards/
    Good work Joycelyn.
    Well done!
    Security always begins with personal responsibility. - quietman7

  24. #24
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    Hi all which one is the best AWUS036H Or AWUS036NH , some days ago i would chosse AWUS036H because the price was good and the suggestions on most pages recomanded it for long rate and compactbility
    but looks that is only Wireless G adatper , so am asking will i have problems with AWUS036H to crack wireless networks that use 802.11n routers ?

  25. #25
    Hi All!

    I am considering a purchase of either Afla AWUS 051NH or Alfa AWUS 052NH simply because I need dual band adapter and the price difference (considering availability of these devices in Europe and their shipping costs) is not big. I did a little research on wikidevi and the newer version is equipped with Ralink RT 3572 which was recommended by multiple users and outside sources. The older version (051) has WI1 chip1: Ralink RT2770 and / or (?) WI1 chip2: Ralink RT2750 (info straight from wikidevi). I am new to the whole business and wanted some advice from someone who actually had experience with using either of these two. What are the operational differences, are there any compatibility issues with either of them on Sana and finally which one would you recommend?

    Thank you in advance for all the replies and happy new year everyone!

  26. #26
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    For wireless cracking, dual band is pretty much useless. I do have the AWUS051NH and it does work well on 2.4GHz, but there is very very poor injection support for the 5GHz band (not really sure why). Regardless, if you aren't going to be using them to connect to a network, I would go with an AWUS036H. Uses the RTL8187L chip which is very well supported under Linux for injection. If you really want a dual band card, I don't have experience with the AWUS052NH so I can't recommend it, but the 051NH does work on 2.4GHz, but there is no 5GHz injection support.

  27. #27
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    I am looking for a wireless adapter that I can plug in and play( avoid cds because I run on Macbook Air ) with Kali. Right now I am unable to run any wireless attacks because I have no wireless card or adapter. What are some recommendations? Thank you so much, I am a kali newbie!

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