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802.11b / Wi-Fi 1

802.11a / Wi-Fi 2

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11a-1999 - provides protocols that allow transmission and reception of data at rates of 1.5 to 54Mbit/s. It has seen widespread worldwide implementation, particularly within the corporate workspace. While the original amendment is no longer valid, the term "802.11a" is still used by wireless access point (cards and routers) manufacturers to describe interoperability of their systems at 5.8 GHz, 54 Mbit/s (54 x 106 bits per second).

802.11g / Wi-Fi 3

802.11n / Wi-Fi 4

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11n - standardized support for multiple-input multiple-output, frame aggregation, and security improvements, among other features, and can be used in the 2.4 GHz or 5 GHz frequency bands. The purpose of the standard is to improve network throughput over the two previous standards—802.11a and 802.11g—with a significant increase in the maximum net data rate from 54 Mbit/s to 600 Mbit/s (slightly higher gross bit rate including for example error-correction codes, and slightly lower maximum throughput) with the use of four spatial streams at a channel width of 40 MHz.

802.11ac / Wi-Fi 5

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11ac - a wireless networking standard in the 802.11 set of protocols (which is part of the Wi-Fi networking family), providing high-throughput wireless local area networks (WLANs) on the 5 GHz band. The standard was developed in the IEEE Standards Association from 2008 (PAR approved 2008-09-26) through 2013 and published in December 2013 (ANSI approved 2013-12-11).[1][2] The standard has been retroactively labelled as Wi-Fi 5 by Wi-Fi Alliance. The specification has multi-station throughput of at least 1 gigabit per second (1 Gbit/s) and single-link throughput of at least 500 megabits per second (0.5 Gbit/s). This is accomplished by extending the air-interface concepts embraced by 802.11n: wider RF bandwidth (up to 160 MHz), more MIMO spatial streams (up to eight), downlink multi-user MIMO (up to four clients), and high-density modulation (up to 256-QAM). The Wi-Fi Alliance separated the introduction of ac wireless products into two phases ("wave"), named "Wave 1" and "Wave 2". From mid-2013, the alliance started certifying Wave 1 802.11ac products shipped by manufacturers, based on the IEEE 802.11ac Draft 3.0 (the IEEE standard was not finalized until later that year). Subsequently in year 2016, Wi-Fi Alliance introduced the Wave 2 certification, which includes additional features like MU-MIMO, 160 MHz channel width support, support for more 5 GHz channels, and four spatial streams (with four antennas; compared to three in Wave 1 and 802.11n, and eight in IEEE's 802.11ac specification). It meant Wave 2 products would have higher bandwidth and capacity than Wave 1 products.

802.11ax / Wi-Fi 6

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11ax - marketed as Wi-Fi 6 by Wi-Fi Alliance, is one of the two Wi-Fi specifications standards of IEEE 802.11 expecting full deployment in late 2019; the other is IEEE 802.11ay. They can be thought of as High Efficiency Wireless. 802.11ax is designed to operate in all ISM bands between 1 and 6 GHz when they become available for 802.11 use, in addition to the 2.4 and 5 GHz bands already allocated. Devices presented at CES 2018 claimed a combined 11 Gbit/s of theoretical data rates. For dense deployments, throughput speeds are 4× higher than IEEE 802.11ac, even though the nominal data rate is just 37% faster at most. Latency is also down 75%. To improve spectrum efficient utilization, the new version introduces better power control methods to avoid interference with neighboring networks, orthogonal frequency-division multiple access (OFDMA), higher order 1024-QAM, and up-link direction added with the down-link of MIMO and MU-MIMO to further increase throughput, as well as dependability improvements of power consumption and security protocols such as Target Wake Time and WPA3.


  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IEEE_802.11ay - a proposed enhancement to the current technical standards for Wi-Fi. It is the follow-up of IEEE 802.11ad, quadrupling the bandwidth and adding MIMO up to 4 streams. It will be the second WiGig standard.


  • wpa_supplicant - a WPA Supplicant for Linux, BSD, Mac OS X, and Windows with support for WPA and WPA2 (IEEE 802.11i / RSN). It is suitable for both desktop/laptop computers and embedded systems. Supplicant is the IEEE 802.1X/WPA component that is used in the client stations. It implements key negotiation with a WPA Authenticator and it controls the roaming and IEEE 802.11 authentication/association of the wlan driver. wpa_supplicant is designed to be a "daemon" program that runs in the background and acts as the backend component controlling the wireless connection. wpa_supplicant supports separate frontend programs and a text-based frontend (wpa_cli) and a GUI (wpa_gui) are included with wpa_supplicant. wpa_supplicant uses a flexible build configuration that can be used to select which features are included. This allows minimal code size (from ca. 50 kB binary for WPA/WPA2-Personal and 130 kB binary for WPA/WPA2-Enterprise without debugging code to 450 kB with most features and full debugging support; these example sizes are from a build for x86 target).

iwlist wlan0 scanning

  • https://wiki.archlinux.org/index.php/iwd - a wireless daemon for Linux, written by Intel aiming to replace WPA supplicant. IWD works standalone or in combination with ConnMan or NetworkManager. It comes with different enhancements like an own crypto-library, called ELL, which docks directly into the Linux Kernel cryptography.

  • hostapd - a user space daemon for access point and authentication servers. It implements IEEE 802.11 access point management, IEEE 802.1X/WPA/WPA2/EAP Authenticators, RADIUS client, EAP server, and RADIUS authentication server. The current version supports Linux (Host AP, madwifi, mac80211-based drivers) and FreeBSD (net80211).hostapd is designed to be a "daemon" program that runs in the background and acts as the backend component controlling authentication. hostapd supports separate frontend programs and an example text-based frontend, hostapd_cli, is included with hostapd.

  • https://bitbucket.org/xoseperez/espurna - ESPurna ("spark" in Catalan) is a custom firmware for ESP8266 based smart switches. It was originally developed with the IteadStudio Sonoff in mind but now it supports a growing number of ESP8266-based boards. It uses the Arduino Core for ESP8266 framework and a number of 3rd party libraries.

  • PyRF - an openly available, comprehensive development environment for wireless signal analysis. PyRF handles the low-level details of configuring a device, real-time data acquisition and signal processing, allowing you to concentrate on your analysis solutions. Hence, it enables rapid development of powerful applications that leverage the new generation of measurement-grade software-defined radio technology, such as ThinkRF Real-Time Spectrum Analysis Software.

  • https://github.com/martin-ger/esp_wifi_repeater - an implementation of a WiFi NAT router on the esp8266 and esp8285. It also includes support for a packet filtering firewall with ACLs, port mapping, traffic shaping, hooks for remote monitoring (or packet sniffing), an MQTT management interface, and power management. For a setup with multiple routers in a mesh to cover a larger area a new mode "Automesh" has been included

  • Better Wi-Fi: FILS - FILS is short for Fast Initial Link Setup. It's the term used to describe IEEE 802.11ai – the IEEE amendment in progress with the sole aim of setting standards for a wireless client to establish a link with an AP in much lesser time than it does today.
  • Revolution Wi-Fi: Wake on Wireless LAN - Similar to Wake-on-LAN (WoL), Wake on Wireless LAN (WoWLAN) is a technology that allows remote wake-up of workstations from a standby power state to facilitate device management. WoWLAN is based on the well-established WoL standard used over wired Ethernet networks, and can provide similar functionality and benefits.

Wi-Fi Direct

  • https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Wi-Fi_Direct - initially called Wi-Fi P2P(Peer to Peer), is a Wi-Fi standard enabling devices to easily connect with each other without requiring a wireless access point. Wi-Fi Direct allows two devices to establish a direct Wi-Fi connection without requiring a wireless router. Hence, Wi-Fi Direct is single radio hop communication, not multihop wireless communication, unlike wireless ad hoc networks and mobile ad hoc networks. Wi-Fi ad hoc mode, however, supports multi-hop radio communications, with intermediate Wi-Fi nodes as packet relays. Wi-Fi becomes a way of communicating wirelessly, much like Bluetooth. It is useful for everything from internet browsing to file transfer, and to communicate with one or more devices simultaneously at typical Wi-Fi speeds. One advantage of Wi-Fi Direct is the ability to connect devices even if they are from different manufacturers. Only one of the Wi-Fi devices needs to be compliant with Wi-Fi Direct to establish a peer-to-peer connection that transfers data directly between them with greatly reduced setup. Wi-Fi Direct negotiates the link with a Wi-Fi Protected Setup system that assigns each device a limited wireless access point. The "pairing" of Wi-Fi Direct devices can be set up to require the proximity of a near field communication, a Bluetooth signal, or a button press on one or all the devices.