Kismet has undergone several major evolutions over time. Some distributions still package the old Kismet versions: If you’re still using the text-based UI, you’ll definitely want to upgrade; not only for the new features, but for significantly reduced RAM and significantly increased performance on modern systems and modern Wi-Fi deployments, which have orders of magnitude more devices on Wi-Fi to track!
MAJOR KISMET UPDATE
Welcome to the new, MAJOR rewrite of Kismet! This version changes almost everything, hopefully for the better, including:
Web-based UI allowing for much simpler presentation of data and compatibility with mobile devices
Standard JSON-based data export for easy scripting against Kismet instances
Support for wireless protocols beyond Wi-Fi, like basic Bluetooth scanning, thermometer, and weather station detection with the RTL-SDR hardware, and more on the way
New remote-capture code optimized for binary size and RAM, allowing extremely low-end embedded devices to be used for packet capture
New logging format which can encapsulate complex information about devices, system state, alerts, messages, and packets in a single file with simple tools for extracting standard formats
Pcap-NG multi-interface logs with complete original headers, readable by Wireshark and other tools
Please remember that with this major release, there is still some work to be done and warts to be taken care of, but the codebase has been under development and in use for several years and has been performing well.
Setting up the new Kismet is generally simpler than the older versions; keep reading for more information!
At the very least you will need to uninstall any old versions of Kismet, and you will need to install the new config files with
make forceconfigs. Read on for more info!