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Use QR Codes For Accessing Wireless Access Points

If you have an Android device with a camera, you can install the ZXing Barcode scanner [1] which supports the following method. It is my understanding, however, that other barcode scanners do not support this, so as cool as this is, it may only serve a very limited audience. The ZXing app doesn't even support this method on iOS, as far as I know.

The ZXing team has a proposal for scanning barcodes to access wireless access points using a MECARD-like structure [2]. The structure of the format is like this:

WIFI:T:WPA;S:mynetwork;P:mypass;;

The parameter "T" can be one of "nopass", "WEP" or "WPA" for the security type. The parameter "S" is your wireless access point's SSID (make sure you append "_nomap" to prevent Google from tracking you [3]). The parameter "P" is the password, if any, of accessing the access point. So, a QR Code containing this information could be something like:

Hopefully other barcode scanners pick up on the proposed standard, and make this more ubiquitous. The obvious advantage is not having to type in lengthy passwords on a small screen. At any event, hope this is useful for some.

1: https://code.google.com/p/zxing/
2: https://code.google.com/p/zxing/wiki/BarcodeContents#Wifi_Network_config_%28Android%29
3: http://pthree.org/2011/11/15/google-wants-to-track-your-physical-location/

{ 6 } Comments

  1. Utahcon using Google Chrome 15.0.874.120 on Windows 7 | November 15, 2011 at 7:24 am | Permalink

    Sweet! That is pretty nifty. Gotta love the flexibility in QR and Android. Thanks for the tip, hopefully more coffee shops etc will adopt this and save me the trouble of plugging these stuff in.

    Would be awesome if you could share this info with your laptop too...

  2. oliver using Firefox 3.6.13 on GNU/Linux | November 15, 2011 at 11:13 am | Permalink

    Do you know of any tool to create these barcodes? The ZXing app on my phone only creates barcodes for Apps, Bookmarks or Contacts; and I don't want to upload the password to a web-based barcode generator. Any ideas?

  3. Aaron Toponce using Debian IceWeasel 8.0 on GNU/Linux 64 bits | November 15, 2011 at 2:07 pm | Permalink

    @oliver- Yes, there is a utility called "qrencode" available in the Debian/Ubuntu repositories.

  4. MarkC using Firefox 3.6.23 on Ubuntu | November 16, 2011 at 7:17 am | Permalink

    It's worth noting, for anyone that is prepared to use an online QR code generator, that the ZXing project's generator includes "Wifi Network" in the dropdown menu at the top, presenting a specific UI for the various fields:

    http://zxing.appspot.com/generator

  5. Mario leonel soto argote using Unknown on Unknown O.S. | August 23, 2012 at 5:17 pm | Permalink

    grasias

  6. Mario leonel soto argote using Unknown on Unknown O.S. | August 23, 2012 at 5:18 pm | Permalink

    No pedo aser esto

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