This January I was lucky enough to participate in a presentation/discussion with some of the Metageek team at Wireless Field Day 2 in Silicon Valley. The delegates were shown Chanalyzer Pro, Eye P.A., and several other goodies the Metageek had in the works.
After playing around with Chanalyzer Pro, I found myself wishing there was a way I could do spectrum analysis on a linux platform. As luck would have it, Mike Kershaw (dragorn) has written a set of utilities to interface with Metageek's Wi-Spy devices from linux. Here is a brief video I made shortly after installing Spectools.
As you can see in the video, Spectools is pretty basic compared to what you'd be used to if you have experience with Chanalyzer or Chanalyzer Pro. However, I was still impressed with several features of Spectools:
- It's free! That's a pretty good price.
- I can run it from linux (Backtrack 5 R2 in my case).
- It supports Wi-Spy 900x, Wi-Spy 2.4 GHz, Wi-Spy DBx, and Ubertooth devices.
- The spectool_net utility allows you to setup a spectrum analysis node that can be connected to remotely.
Will I be switching to Spectools as my primary spectrum analysis software? No, of course not, but I think it's pretty handy to have spectrum analysis capabilities native to linux so you don't have to boot to Windows just to have a quick peek at the RF environment. Chanalyzer and Chanalyzer Pro are vastly more feature rich, but I still think Spectools will make a nice addition to my toolkit.
If you want a closer look at the Spectool_GTK interface, I've taken some screenshots:
I'd be interested to hear what your experience with Spectools has been like. I haven't really played around with the remote node capabilities so any comments you might have would be greatly appreciated.
Disclosure: As a delegate of Wireless Field Day 2, I received a free Wi-Spy DBx, and Wi-Spy 900x. In addition, I recieved licenses for Chanalyzer Pro, Chanalyzer Lab, and Eye P.A. These were provided for testing purposes and no expectation for positive review of these products was requested and/or promised.