My question is what is happening during the initial connection to a wireless network , is there an Ethernet connection first and then DHCP or something else is happening before the device receive an IP address . I`m asking this because when i run iwlist command in linux there is : ADDRESS : XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX .

1 Answer 1


The basic flow starts with 802.11 packet exchange to determine data rates and other capabilites. After this exchange completes, any WPA/WPA2 or 802.11x authentication happens afterwards before traffic is accepted.

Here is a good explanation from Meraki

802.11 Association Process

Once the client is associated completely, then it will send out a DHCP broadcast to get an IP address, DNS etc.

  • The link gave good explanation , and answered my question , thank you .
    – Angel
    May 6, 2018 at 13:22

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