Changing MAC Addresses In Ubuntu May Fix Some Network Problems

Here’s something I discovered over the weekend that may be a help so someone. This may also not be new to many folks out there, but the few who may find this useful, please use it to resolve possible IP address / Wi-Fi issues.

Here’s the problem I was faced with last week.. One of our employees had a Dell Latitude E6430 that wouldn’t connect to our corporate Wi-fi network. It worked just fine on other networks, including the guest Wi-Fi network from the same Access Point. This user was part of a team that received reserved DHCP IP addresses on their laptops. When his laptop wireless adapter wouldn’t connect, I decided to undo the IP reservations and assign a different IP address just to test.

That also didn’t work. I contacted our network team to verify and check the firewall in place to see if his MAC address was black-listed somewhere and they came back and told me their were no such rules in place.

I knew there was something preventing this user from connecting and no one was telling me. His Wired LAN works just fine. His Wi-Fi adapter works on other networks, not just the corporate one. So if it wasn’t the DHCP, then some firewall rule on the network was blocking his MAC. So I changed it.

Voila! His laptop starting connecting again.

Just in case you find yourself in similar situation, try changing the MAC address of the system. Although this was a Windows machine, it can also be applied to a Linux system, including Ubuntu.

This brief tutorial is going to show you how to change the MAC address in Ubuntu 13.04 Raring Ringtail and previous versions.  To get started, press Ctrl – Alt – T on your keyboard to open the terminal. When it opens, run the commands below to install MACchanger-GTK tool.

sudo apt-get install macchanger-gtk

 

Because the tool requires only the root to use it, create a root password if you haven’t created one.

sudo passwd root

After creating a password for the root account, launch MACchanger-GTK by running the commands below.

macchanger-gtk

 

Finally, use the tool to change the MAC address of your system.

 

mac-address-change-ubuntu_2

 

That’s it!

Restart your computer and enjoy!

For Windows, including Windows 7, you may want to use this tool. http://www.technitium.com/tmac/index.html

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