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Authenticator for IEEE 802.11 networks


hostapd [-BdhKtv] config-file ...

Runs on:



Detach from the controlling terminal and run as a daemon process in the background.
Enable debugging messages. If this option is supplied twice, more verbose messages are displayed.
Show help text.
Include key information in debugging output.
Include timestamps in debugging output.
Display version information on the terminal, and then exit.
Use the settings in the specified configuration file; the name of the specified wireless interface is contained in this file. See hostapd.conf in the NetBSD documentation for a description of the configuration file syntax.


The hostapd utility is an authenticator for IEEE 802.11 networks. It provides full support for WPA/IEEE 802.11i and can also act as an IEEE 802.1X Authenticator with a suitable backend Authentication Server (typically FreeRADIUS). The hostapd utility implements the authentication protocols that piggyback on top of the normal IEEE 802.11 protocol mechanisms.

To use hostapd as an authenticator, the underlying device must support some basic functionality, such as the ability to set security information in the 802.11 management frames. Beware that not all devices have this support.

The hostapd utility is designed to be a daemon program that runs in the background and acts as the backend component controlling the wireless connection. It supports separate front-end programs such as the text-based front-end, hostapd_cli.

You can reload changes to the configuration file by sending a SIGHUP signal to the hostapd processor, or by using the hostapd_cli reconfigure command.

See also:


hostapd.conf, hostapd_cli, in the NetBSD documentation at