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Hidden Wi-Fi Diagnostics Tool In Mac OS X 10.7 Lion

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Apple WiFi Diagnostics

Apple’s newest operating system, Mac OS X 10.7 Lion, hides a hidden application that allows the user to monitor and diagnose their wi-fi connection. The application, called Wi-Fi Diagnostics, is hidden in the CoreServices folder. To get the application, simply open your hard drive and you will find the System folder. From there follow the path below to find the Wi-Fi Diagnostics application.

/System/Library/CoreServices/Wi-Fi Diagnostics.app

Once launched, the Wi-Fi Diagnostics application gives you 4 options:

Monitor Performance

wifidiagnosticmonitorperformance

Monitor Performance displays a graph of network signal strength, noise level, transmit power, and data rate. Information such as Country Code, SSID, Channel, txPower, txRate, Signal, and Noise are logged and displayed in the area at the top of the window with each line representing a single sampling. The graph below shows a running representation of the wi-fi networks signal and noise measured in dBm. Clicking the Continue button brings the user to a screen where they can export the report either to the Finder desktop or send it the report in an email. Clicking the back button will return you to the original menu.

Record Events

This option detects and reports dropped network connections, roaming, and other network events, such as connecting to or disconnecting from a network or network device. Clicking the Continue button brings the user to a screen where they can export the report either to the Finder desktop or send the report in an email. Clicking the back button will return you to the original menu.

Capture Raw Frames

WiFi Diagnostics Capture Raw Frames

The Capture Raw Frames option captures all network traffic on the Wi-Fi interface.

Several options are available in this mode.

  • Capture data sent and received on the network
  • Capture data sent and received on my computer
  • Capture data from all nearby networks

There is also a checkbox for Disconnect from the network and capture only data from channel and then a drop-down menu to select the channel.

You’ve selected your option(s), simply click the Start Capturing button to begin the raw frame capture and you will be prompted on the following screen to select to either save the report to the Finder desktop or send it in an email.

Turn on Debug Logs

This option provides specific details of every wireless connection. When clicking the Start Logging button, you will be prompted to enter an administrator password. Logging will then begin with any events showing in the log. Clicking the Continue button allows you to export the report to the desktop or an email.

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