NetStumbler promises to be a Swiss army knife of WiFi network analysis but it fails to work with modern WiFi network interface cards. If you have an older computer or if you are willing to buy an outdated WiFi card from eBay, then perhaps this software is going to be very useful for you.
This software requires that you first install it on your Windows PC and then restart it. After you have restarted Windows, it is ready for your use. If it finds a suitable WiFi interface hardware installed on your Windows PC, only then it will start analyzing the WiFi networks around you.
In it small window, it detects all the channels in use by your WiFi network adapter, different SSID visible at your location and their signal strength. You can find all of this information by clicking on the WiFi icon in the Windows notification area too. But NetStumbler displays much more information.
For each of the SSID (WiFi network names) it displays the MAC address of the WiFi router, channel used, speed, vendor, type, encryption, signal to noise ratio, IP address, subnet and the GPS coordinates. The GPS service can be disabled or enabled as per user’s preference. In addition, it can also log the first seen time, last seen time, the distance, beacon frequency and more. Al of this information can be exported to a text file for later reference.
One problem that we faced when using this software is that it could not find any useful WiFi network interface on our test PC. We have Intel WiFi chip built inside the computer and it did not seem to find it of any use. Then we used a USB WiFi dongle from TP-Link and it still could not find it useful. In the help file that comes with NetStumbler, it states that it has been test with older Proxim cards that are no longer in use.
You can download NetStumbler from http://www.netstumbler.com/downloads/.