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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:13 PM   #1
jman995x
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How to find out which 802.11 (a/b/g/n) my MBP is running?

Hello,

I have a MBP that is a couple of years old.
I wanted to know which of the 802.11 protocols it is enabled with, but can't seem to find that information on my machine.
Where should I look?

Thanks,

Justin
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:15 PM   #2
Eidorian
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Fire up System Profiler and look under Network -> Airport.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:18 PM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eidorian View Post
Fire up System Profiler and look under Network -> Airport.
That doesn't tell me anything on mine. You can go to Airport Utility > Wireless > Radio Mode: to tell what is enabled, but that doesn't tell you which is running at the moment.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:19 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
That doesn't tell me anything on mine.
Really? I get hardware and firmware versions along with supported modes.

Network Utility shows what modes are available as well.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:23 PM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eidorian View Post
Really? I get hardware and firmware versions along with supported modes.

Network Utility shows what modes are available as well.
Nevermind... I was looking at System Preferences... not System Profiler! Brain Cramp! However, in System Profiler, I still don't see where it shows what mode (b/g/n) is enabled.

Last edited by GGJstudios; Jun 23, 2010 at 03:29 PM.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:32 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Nevermind... I was looking at System Preferences... not System Profiler! Brain Cramp! However, in System Profiler, I still don't see where it shows what mode (b/g/n) is enabled.
System Profiler and Network Utility both show what 802.11 modes are available.

The best I've been able to come up with to know what mode you're actually in is to check the transmission rate in Network Utility or once again in System Profiler. 130 Mbits tends to imply you're working under 802.11n mode.

If it's slower you're in 'g' and then down to 'b'.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:35 PM   #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eidorian View Post
System Profiler and Network Utility both show what 802.11 modes are available.

The best I've been able to come up with to know what mode you're actually in is to check the transmission rate in Network Utility or once again in System Profiler. 130 Mbits tends to imply you're working under 802.11n mode.
If the only indication is an inference from the transmission rate, that can easily be found by pressing Option while clicking the Airport icon on the Menu Bar. I thought there was something in SysProfiler that specifically stated which mode, like Airport Utility does.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:38 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
If the only indication is an inference from the transmission rate, that can easily be found by pressing Option while clicking the Airport icon on the Menu Bar. I thought there was something in SysProfiler that specifically stated which mode, like Airport Utility does.
I was wondering what key that was. I've tried Option before but it didn't seem to work until just now.

Otherwise I believe the OP did ask what modes are available to them on their older MacBook Pro. System Profiler and Network Utility will both show if 'n' is supported or not.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:41 PM   #9
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Download iStumbler and your airport is capable of N according to your screenshot

And when i look in system profiler -> airport it list at what protocol it´s connected with
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:41 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eidorian View Post
I was wondering what key that was. I've tried Option before but it didn't seem to work until just now.

Otherwise I believe the OP did ask what modes are available to them on their older MacBook Pro. System Profiler and Network Utility will both show of 'n' is supported or not.
Yes, the confusion on my part is their thread title asks which is running, but the body of the post asks which is enabled. Two different questions. By the way, is there a quick "cheat sheet" to use to infer from the transmit rate which is n, g, b, etc.?


Quote:
Originally Posted by Cool Runnings View Post
Download iStumbler and your airport is capable of N according to your screenshot

And when i look in system profiler -> airport it list at what protocol it´s connected with
Yes, I know mine is capable of n, since I've selected n with b/g compatible. That means it will support n, g or b, depending on the devices on the network at any given time. What that doesn't tell me is which is currently in use. For example, I run on n when it's just my MBP, but if my wife connects her PC to the network, it drops to g, since hers doesn't support n. My System Profiler doesn't show a fraction of the information yours shows. I don't know if that's because you have iStumbler installed or not, but mine doesn't even show 802.11a/b/g/n.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 03:45 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Yes, the confusion on my part is their thread title asks which is running, but the body of the post asks which is enabled.
No worries. It happens to all of us.

Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Two different questions. By the way, is there a quick "cheat sheet" to use to infer from the transmit rate which is n, g, b, etc.?
I happen to have it memorized at 130, 54, and 11 Mbits for (n, g, b) respectively. It takes a little brain work to interpret Wikipedia's table.
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 05:30 PM   #12
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OP, chiming back in.

Sorry for the confusion between the Title and the body, but I guess since somebody mentioned it, I do want to know what the machine is capable of, and what it is currently transmitting at.

I too have a very sparsely populated System Profiler > Airport Card reading....doesn't mention anything about 802.11.

However, I followed one poster's advice to Opt + Airport and it states 130, so I guess I'm running "n" (which would obviously automatically include downmodes b/g).

Thanks for all of the help.

Best regards,

Justin
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Old Jun 23, 2010, 07:42 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Eidorian View Post
No worries. It happens to all of us.

I happen to have it memorized at 130, 54, and 11 Mbits for (n, g, b) respectively. It takes a little brain work to interpret Wikipedia's table.
Mine is 144...I guess that's N? I always wondered because I have an older generation Time Capsule.

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Old Jun 23, 2010, 08:00 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by sadcamper View Post
Mine is 144...I guess that's N? I always wondered because I have an older generation Time Capsule.

72.2 * 2 = 144.4

(shrug)

I've been stuck at 130 Mbits since 2007 on the hardware I've used. Then again I don't spend that much on my network hardware. My first router was $10 after rebate and my current one was $29.
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Old Jun 24, 2010, 04:06 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GGJstudios View Post
Yes, I know mine is capable of n, since I've selected n with b/g compatible. That means it will support n, g or b, depending on the devices on the network at any given time. What that doesn't tell me is which is currently in use. For example, I run on n when it's just my MBP, but if my wife connects her PC to the network, it drops to g, since hers doesn't support n. My System Profiler doesn't show a fraction of the information yours shows. I don't know if that's because you have iStumbler installed or not, but mine doesn't even show 802.11a/b/g/n.
OK, i Have OS X 10.6, don´t know what you have and it isn´t affected by i Stumbler.

OK, however your WiFi will go up and down in speed based on connected devices with n/b/g so don´t worry...
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Old Jun 24, 2010, 09:08 AM   #16
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Originally Posted by Cool Runnings View Post
your WiFi will go up and down in speed based on connected devices with n/b/g so don´t worry...
I know that. I said exactly that in my 4th post in this thread. I'm not worried about anything. My WiFi works just fine. I know how to see what Radio Mode I have selected, as I mentioned in my 1st post. I know how to quickly determine my transmit rate, as I mentioned in my 3rd post.

In attempting to answer the OP's question, I was looking for a simple way for the OP to determine what mode was currently in use, as their thread title asked. It appears that looking at the transmit rate is the only way to infer which mode is in use.
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Old Jun 24, 2010, 12:31 PM   #17
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Tomato is fun for what it can tell you about your connectivity.
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