On my recent tech adventure, I stumbled upon an online course – which turned out to be really refreshing and diverted my attention from myriad of programming languages – about Cyber Security and ethical hacking. I was a bit hesitant at first, because my previous WiFi hacking endeavors were either a source of violent neighbors’ complaints or lead to a complete dead end. During the process I understood the importance of little (humongous in some cases) creatures called USB WiFi adapters. In this post I am going to tell you all about USB WiFi adapters and direct you to the best USB WiFi adapters with the Atheros AR9271 chipset I could find: Alfa AWUS036NHA. (Those in a hurry, click the mentioned link to get the -> best USB WiFi adapter)
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(It looks like this and yes, you can click the above affiliate image to get to the Amazon page too.)
Before we get into the details, I have been using this model since 7 months and till date I have not encountered a single problem.
The Alfa AWUS036NHA is effective for people:
- Who want a reliable USB WiFi adapter with Atheros AR9271 chipset for hacking purposes( I mean Ethical 🙂 ).
- Who have damaged their in-built laptop WiFi chipset and are looking for a new reliable WiFi adapter with a longer range.
- Who have no prior knowledge about WiFi adapters and are just wanting to increase their knowledge.
I have sectioned this blog into 3 parts for your convenience.
Don’t worry, I’ll explain everything in detail, just sit tight and enjoy the learning.
For those who know Hacking ( pro or beginners):
Atheros Ar9271 Windows 10 Driver
If you are seasoned hacker or a beginner, you most probably have crossed paths with your best pal- Kali Linux. If you have not heard about Kali, it is a Linux distribution designed for digital forensics (what the FBI guys in the movies do) and penetration testing (in layman’s terms, a cyber attack). Now, you have either dual booted your PC or have installed Kali Linux as a virtual machine. Why at all you would need a external USB WiFi adapter:
- The in-built Wireless card can’t be used in virtual machines AND
- The in-built cards are simply not good enough for hacking.
So, what the Adapter essentially does is lets you connect to the Wireless networks over a larger range than your in-built WiFi card and…. it also lets you:
- Go monitor mode: As the name suggests you are the monitor of a classroom but in this case the classroom is the people connected to the your wireless network.
- do Packet Injection: Again, as the name suggests interfering with the network by making your own packets and posing them to the network as if they were legitimate.
- Aircrack-ng: A popular software used for password cracking ( still remember the day when I cracked my neighbors WEP (🤣) encrypted WiFi using this software)
- do many more cool things.
As a proof that this works I’ll show you a snap of Linux commands I ran for Monitor mode through this adapter. ( I was thinking of including more snaps but figured it would be out of the scope of the topic)
Now, as stated above, you can do all sorts of cool things with the Alfa, as per the the specifications of the product:
- can detect 2.4 but no 5 GHz traffic.
- supports monitor mode.
- perfect compatibility with Windows, Mac and Linux operating systems. ( is not compatible with Xbox, Blu-ray players or Roku devices which do not have an operating system)
- weighs a decent 160 gm.
- flawless packet injection.
Atheros Ar9271 Driver
It is otherwise a perfect product other than the non-detectable 5 GHz traffic and I strongly recommend the product for my fellow hackers.
You can find the link –>> Alfa AWUS036NHA Atheros AR9271 USB WiFi adapter.
For those who have damaged their in-built Wireless card:
Now, how do you know if you have damaged your in-built WiFi Chipset?
- If In spite of troubleshooting, rebooting and checking the external factors( routers or LAN cables if you use them), you are unable to connect to a Wireless network then most probably it’s a hardware issue and you need to replace it with a new wireless card.
Atheros Ar9271 For Mac Windows 10
In this case you can either check your laptop with someone professional, but that will be way expensive than buying a USB WiFi adapter. I’ll recommend you my favorite contenders for top 3 USB WiFi adapters:
- Edimax Wireless 802 .11 BGN Nano USB Adapter( link) – This small and inexpensive WiFi adapter- these are the nano-adapters- is the solution to your persisting problem. PRICE: under 15 bucks on Amazon. ( you can check the above link to get to their page)
- TP-Link N150 USB WiFi Adapter with SoftAP Mode( link) – A reliable and cheap WiFi adapter (nano-adapter). PRICE: under 10 bucks.
- ASUS USB-AC68 Dual-Band AC1900 USB 3.0 Wi-Fi Adapter (link) – This is for those who are willing to go the extra mile and buy a royal product. This has everything one can look for in an adapter. It supports 2.4 and 5 GHz frequencies, is portable and stylish, no complex setup and most importantly is a reputable ASUS product. (looks cool, doesn’t it)
I hope you have gained if not much, but at least some knowledge when dealing with these external devices.
If you have any questions, feel free to post them in the comment sections.
Atheros Usb Wifi Dongle
You can support me by clicking the affiliate links and making the right decision of buying your favorite USB WiFi adapter.
Atheros Ar9271 For Mac Osx