I just cracked the access-point (AP) of a friend of mine (Linksys E4200) and we were looking for a way to rid him of the vulnerability. Unfortunately, the E4200 does not disable WPS when you tell it to (via web gui).

While we are waiting for a firmware update (due beginning of March) Cisco recommends to disable wireless. A forum post recommends switching the AP to N-only (where possible) to make reavers life harder.

Does anyone know why/how N-only helps?


I'll try to keep this as simple as I can.

If I have a laptop that is 2-4+ years old chances are that it probably doesn't have wireless N if it was an entry line to moderate system so if I try to connect to your AP I wouldnt even see it since I cant "speak" that frequency. however for $20 I could buy a wireless N USB dongle if I knew that you were using wireless N only and then attack it.

You might want to consider loading DD-WRT (alternative firmware) if your specific hardware revision is supported. Check out http://www.dd-wrt.com/wiki/index.php/Linksys_E4200 but since it's a work in progress you might want to just craigslist the old router and replace it with something that will meet/exceed your specifications. Buffalo makes some models with DD-wrt from the factory. I've setup several of these for small cafe's and offices and they have more than most need as far as a feature set goes.

This should give you most every option you could ask for.

Next I would take a look at where you have your router and how far you want to go from it, then change the power settings to increase or decrease the transmission power to assist in securing it based on distance. The only flaw with this is someone could build a 25dBi antenna and amp the signal in order to reach you.

If you are paranoid about people getting in, stick with hardwiring everything and just disable wifi, because time will always defeat encryption. A long password today might take 1000+ years with $500 of video cards but in 2-3 years from now that same $500 might take a week to break the same passkey.


Switching to “n-only” help preventing attacks on WPS because some hackers don't have n adapter :). It doesn't matter n-only or mix mode enable on your AP. You should turn off WPS.. but some devices don't have this feature :(. I have cracked a few AP (n-only mode) and haven't had any problem with cracking.


I would consider it fast. The hacker community is up in arms, and are playing with their new toy.

Switching to N-only will make it a little more difficult because, of the security lockout after so many failed attempts. If you lucky your router has a security lockout, most don't.

Its really starting not to matter either because, once an attacker starts using multiple network adapters, and multiple devices to exploit WPS, its almost impossible to detour. From 10 hours, to about 15 minutes :-\

  • 1
    Welcome to IT Security, KrackerJack! Thanks for the answer. I have to admit I'm still confused about the answer to the question er4z0r asked: why/how does N-only help? Perhaps you can elaborate? – D.W. Mar 2 '12 at 6:13

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service, privacy policy and cookie policy

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.