ArubaOS and Controllers

Occasional Contributor II

Apple 802.1x Authentication

Hey all,
I'm a network admin at a school division. We have just installed some 3400 controllers.
An issue i'm facing is that when my Apple clients attempt to authenticate using 802.1x, they sometimes enter their password wrong. The ssid does not care at this point and assigns them a self assigned ip address. This can be corrected on the client side but the users usually can not figure it out. Does any one else have this same problem and have a suggestion?

Thanks for any help
Aruba Employee
Aruba Employee

Re: Apple 802.1x Authentication

This does not sound right. If a wireless client does not pass authentication the encrypted tunnel would not be set up.
Super Contributor I

I know what you mean

I've seen this. If you get a user/device in this state, without disabling airport (i.e., leave it on and "connected"), open the Network preferences. What I have observed is that airport status is "Connected" but 802.1X has a "Connect" button, implying it is NOT connected.

So kia is right in that the tunnel would not establish; the client did not complete dot1x. However, because of some stupid behavior on the mac side, it keeps airport connected and does drop the association for some reason.

Anyone else observe this?
Ryan Holland, ACDX #1 ACMX #1
The Ohio State University
New Contributor

Re: Apple 802.1x Authentication

Yep, I've seen this too - stupid Mac behaviour. I've also seen multiple 802.1x profiles appear for the same SSID over time, even on a freshly created connection, and I have no idea why. The Mac then gets its knickers in a knot over which SSID 802.1x Profile to use..... *rolls eyes*

Guru Elite


Not to pile on, but I have seen the behavior when the wrong username and password is entered into the client that the MAC will keep trying and never indicate incorrect username and password. This would force the lockout that you are talking. Rolling my eyes too...

*Answers and views expressed by me on this forum are my own and not necessarily the position of Aruba Networks or Hewlett Packard Enterprise.*
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Occasional Contributor II

Re: Apple 802.1x Authentication

Thanks all,

I've had to come up with a procedure, for the techs, to clear this out of the Mac network preferences.

Aruba tech support has no good fix for this also.

It's definitely a MacOS 10.5 to 10.6 problem.
10.4 and lower will not produce this issue.

Super Contributor I

Apple "networksetup" auto configuration

I've been trying to build an auto-configuration for Macs that would just be able to fix bad configurations, etc. However, I cannot find a way to link an 802.1X profile to a preferred airport network. Here's the commands I'm using from Terminal (that could be packaged into an app):

networksetup -setairportpower Airport off
networksetup -removepreferredwirelessnetwork Airport osuwireless
networksetup -deleteuserprofile osuwireless
networksetup -import8021xProfiles Airport ~/Desktop/AutoConfiguration/AirPortConfig.networkConnect
networksetup -addpreferredwirelessnetworkatindex Airport osuwireless 0 WPA2E
networksetup -setairportpower Airport on

The idea is that the "AirPortConfig.networkConnect" file would contain the 802.1X EAP parameters and SSID.

Can anyone else with Mac savvy take this and see if they can make it work? Apple is ignoring my emails at this point. I'd email Steve Jobs about it, but he'd probably just tell me hold my laptop differently.
Ryan Holland, ACDX #1 ACMX #1
The Ohio State University
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