How to find the MAC address and How to find the manufacturer by MAC address

A media access control address (MAC address) is a unique identifier assigned to a network interface controller (NIC) for use as a network address in communications within a network segment. This use is common in most IEEE 802 networking technologies, including Ethernet, Wi-Fi, and Bluetooth. Within the Open Systems Interconnection (OSI) network model, MAC addresses are used in the medium access control protocol sublayer of the data link layer. As typically represented, MAC addresses are recognizable as six groups of two hexadecimal digits, separated by hyphens, colons, or without a separator.

MAC addresses are primarily assigned by device manufacturers, and are therefore often referred to as the burned-in address, or as an Ethernet hardware address, hardware address, or physical address. Each address can be stored in hardware, such as the card's read-only memory, or by a firmware mechanism. Many network interfaces, however, support changing their MAC address. The address typically includes a manufacturer's organizationally unique identifier (OUI). MAC addresses are formed according to the principles of two numbering spaces based on Extended Unique Identifiers (EUI) managed by the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE): EUI-48, which replaces the obsolete term MAC-48, and EUI-64.

Network nodes with multiple network interfaces, such as routers and multilayer switches, must have a unique MAC address for each NIC in the same network. However, two NICs connected to two different networks can share the same MAC address.

An example of a MAC address is 50:46:5D:6E:8C:20, notations such as 50-46-5D-6E-8C-20 and 50465D6E8C20 are also common. That is, a MAC address consists of six pairs of characters (called octets). These characters include all numbers and letters from A to F (the hexadecimal character set).

The first three octets (bits) contain the Organization Unique Identifier (OUI) or MFG (Manufacturing) code that the manufacturer receives from the IEEE. That is, they are unique for each manufacturer of network devices, and each manufacturer, when assigning a MAC address to its network device, begins with its own three octets. It is from them, knowing the MAC address, that you can determine the manufacturer. The manufacturer assigns the last three octets arbitrarily and, unlike the first three, they must be unique for each network interface.

How to determine the manufacturer of the device by MAC address in Windows

In Windows, there is a free program MACAddressView to determine the vendor (manufacturer) of a device by MAC address.

You can search by MAC address, company name, company address, company country, all MAC addresses. The input rules are as follows:

  • Enter one or more MAC addresses, separated by spaces or by pressing <Enter>. You can specify the complete address (for example, 01-02-03-04-05-06) or only its first 3 bytes (for example, 01-02-03).
  • Enter one or more company names to search for, separating each search string with <Enter>.
  • Enter one or more addresses to search, separating each search string with <Enter>.
  • Enter one or more countries to search for, separating each search string with <Enter>.

How to determine the device manufacturer by MAC address in Linux

A database with Organizationally Unique Identifier (OUI) is usually already present on Linux systems, because various programs use it. You can search this file:

locate oui.txt

Also you can download this database

wget http://standards-oui.ieee.org/oui/oui.txt

The database is a plain text file, which you can search in various ways that are convenient for you.

I wrote a small script that can also help you. Create an oui.sh file and copy into it:

#!/bin/bash
  
MAC="$(echo $1 | sed 's/ //g' | sed 's/-//g' | sed 's/://g' | cut -c1-6)";
 
result="$(grep -i -A 4 ^$MAC ./oui.txt)";
 
if [ "$result" ]; then
    echo "For the MAC $1 the following information is found:"
    echo "$result"
else
    echo "MAC $1 is not found in the database."
fi

Usage:

bash oui.sh MAC

Where, instead of MAC, insert the MAC-address of interest to you (in whole or in part):

bash oui.sh 50:46:5D:6E:8C:20

How to find your MAC address in Windows

On Windows, you can find out your MAC address in several ways – from the GUI and from the command line.

To find out your MAC address, open Control Panel → Network and Internet → Network and Sharing Center → Change adapter settings or you can just run the command:

ncpa.cpl

Select the adapter (network connection) you are interested in, right-click on it and select “Status” in the context menu. Then click the “Details…” button:

In the window that opens, the item “Physical Address” is the MAC address of this network adapter:

To find out your MAC address in Windows from the command line, open a command prompt, to do this press Win+x and select “Windows PowerShell”. You can use two commands, the first one

getmac

shows brief information about all the MAC addresses of the system, while it is not always easy to map an interface to specific matching MAC address.

Command

ipconfig /all

displays more advanced information about the connection, using it you can navigate which physical address (MAC) belongs to which interface:

How to find your MAC address in Linux

In Linux, there are several ways to find out your MAC address. If you are only interested in a list of addresses without additional details, then you can run:

cat /sys/class/net/*/address

Command

ip link

displays information about the current MAC value and the permanent MAC address of the device:

The MAC address appears on the lines preceded by “link/ether”. If the MAC address has been changed, the current value is shown after “link/ether”, and the constant value after “permaddr”.

Command

ip a

will show information about the status of connections, including the MAC address:

And with the command

sudo iw dev

you can see the MAC address of the wireless interfaces:

How to find the MAC address of devices on the local network

Using the nmap program, both in Windows and in Linux, you can find devices connected to the local network and find out their MAC addresses. Example command for subnet 192.168.0.0/24:

sudo nmap -sn -n 192.168.0.0/24

In addition to the MAC address, the IP address in the local network and the manufacturer of the device are also displayed.

How to find the MAC address and manufacturers of wireless access points in Windows

You can find out which Wi-Fi networks are working near you, as well as find out their manufacturer using the WifiInfoView program.

WifiInfoView scans wireless networks in range and displays extended information about them, including: network name (SSID), MAC address, PHY type (802.11g or 802.11n), RSSI, signal quality, frequency, channel number, maximum speed, company name , router model and router name (only for routers that provide this information) and more.

Pay attention to the columns “Router Model” and “Router Name”, for some routers (which send this information themselves) the exact model is written in them.

How to find the MAC address and manufacturers of wireless access points in Linux

Airodump-ng has the -M, --manufacturer option, which displays a manufacturer column with information obtained from the IEEE OUI list.

Example command:

sudo airodump-ng wlan0 -M

Also note the BSSID column – these are the MAC addresses of the wireless Wi-Fi networks.

How to find the MAC address of a device/computer on the Internet

You can get the MAC address of the device only for hosts that are with you on the local subnet, which can be reached directly through the second layer (ethernet or wifi).

MAC Addresses are used on layer 2 only, and Layer 2 is effectively a single Local Area Network with its own broadcast domains and link-local networks. The source MAC Address and target MAC address inside TCP/IP Packets is changed as they travel from network to network by routers which are forwarding the packets based on destination IP Address.

There is no usefulness of a PC's MAC address outside of its own local network, apart from potentially being able to use it to find the vendor of the network card for support purposes.

The source mac address is replaced by the source mac address of the router and the process repeats.

Your original source mac address in the packet is replaced, but when the router gets the packet coming back with IP of your PC in the destination ip field, it will replace the destination mac address in the packet to that of your PC.

Essentially you simply apply the concept of your local LAN to every LAN.

That is, you cannot find out the MAC address of a device or computer on the Internet.

Although it is technically possible in some circumstances to determine the MAC address of non-local hosts via protocols such as NetBIOS, SNMP, etc. For these purposes, there are corresponding NSE scripts. If the host is running Samba or Windows, then nbstat will show you the MAC address and manufacturer. There is a snmp-interfaces script for SNMP.

Lookup MAC-address to find device manufacturer online

If you know the MAC address and you want to know the manufacturer of this device, you can use the free online service to query the database: https://suip.biz/?act=mac

Conclusion

The MAC address of the device can be spoofed, so the information about the manufacturer is not always reliable.

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