Change MAC Address in Windows, Part 1: Introduction

This entry is part 1 of 3 in the series Change MAC Address in Windows

Introduction

MAC Address (Media Access Control) or physical address is a unique address assigned to NICs (Network Interface Card) by the manufacturer for identification. Even though MAC Address is a unique address which means that there shouldn’t be any MAC Address duplication occur in the world. But do you know that you can still change the MAC Address of NICs which is called MAC spoofing. It is a technique of hacking which you change the MAC Address to bypass access control lists on firewalls or routers. For MAC Address, there are 2 types of address: Universally Administered Address (UAA) and Locally Administered Address (LAA).

  • Universally Administered Address, also known as burned-in address (BIA), is uniquely assigned to NIC by its manufacturer.
  • Locally Administered Address is assigned to NIC by user or network administrator to override the burned-in address.

For more information about MAC Address, see MAC address – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Note: I write this article not for encourage hacking activity but to show that MAC Address can be changed easily so you shouldn’t define security policy that rely on MAC Address too much. It can also be use for troubleshoot or test network problems.

This article will cover changing MAC Address on Windows only. There are many ways you can change MAC Address. The first easiest method is to change MAC Address from NIC’s Properties. But the method requires that a NIC supports this feature. If your NIC doesn’t support the feature, you still can change MAC Address by modify Windows Registry. This method requires some knowledge about edit Windows Registry. If you doesn’t familiar with Windows Registry, you can try the last method which use a tool to change MAC Address (but it doesn’t free) – SMAC.

I’ll not write the last method since you can get documentation and help from the tool’s website. So only first and second methods that I’ll write.
Note: Changing MAC Address in Windows by the methods above are not supported by Microsoft. I’ll not be responsible on any damage or loss on your system. Do on your own risk!

Series NavigationChange MAC Address in Windows, Part 2: Feature on NIC >>

One Response

  1. Vonnie Rybak December 1, 2011

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