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I bought a second hand laptop from a guy called Marcus. It had Win 10 on it but I immediately installed a new SSD drive and loaded Linux Mint. I was surprised when I visited a cafe to find that it connected to The Cloud WiFi with the message 'Welcome back Marcus'. How is it recognising this laptop?

  • The MAC address or ip address might not have changed. – Gudradain Jan 27 '17 at 18:54
  • Okay, must be the MAC address as IP changes all the time. I wasn't aware that MAC addresses were static. In the hardware itself. That's a privacy issue. Thanks. – David38 Jan 27 '17 at 19:03
  • There are ways to report an edited MAC address, but personally I wouldn't worry about it. – Bryan Field Jan 27 '17 at 19:16
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Because of the MAC address.

The MAC address is stored on your internet card and is shared with the router to route the internet packets. Since, you connected with the cafe wifi, it gave your MAC address to the cafe router which they then used to identify your computer using the information they previously stored.

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