Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Free WIFI in Paris airport

So, I was stuck in Paris Airport for a few hours waiting for my connecting flight. I took out my laptop in hopes of free internet. Opened up my browser. And there we go. Bad news and good news! The familiar screen pops up asking you to pay for the internet. But wait, at the bottom corner of the screen, it says something like "Free internet browsing for 15 minutes". Woohoo. Atleast I have 15 minutes of entertainment. I entered my name, email address and there we go. So after some emailing, facebooking, twittering and browsing, the time slipped by and in no time the 15 minutes were over.

Now what??

I sat there and thought. Haha! I still have my phone. It was my Samsung Captivate. But you know the small screen and the slow speed of these phones. Makes browsing a terrible experience. Even though these phones are much better than previous ones, the browsing is still a pain.

So NOW what??

I remembered reading somewhere, "15 min browsing per device". Some of my grey matter upstairs put on their thinking caps. So if they say "per device", that means they don't use the email you entered in the beginning as a means to stop you from using the 15 mins more than once. But then how would they find out it was from a different device. The answer is obvious for any one of you who have studied computers. No?? Well the only thing that came to my mind was the MAC address of the device.

I was on my linux OS. I had done it before, changing the mac address, but I couldn't remember the commands. Opened up the terminal. Nope. For some reason I thought maybe staring at the terminal would make me remember. But I had my phone. That much browsing can be done of the phone right??

So a quick google search gave me the needed commands.

You will need to either loign as root or use sudo in front of every command.
> ifconfig wlan0 down
> ifconfig wlan0 hw ether XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX
> ifconfig wlan0 up
> ifconfig wlan0 | grep HWaddr
You should enter any hex digits instead of the X's above. For example
> ifconfig wlan0 hw ether 4f:ed:18:05:a9:28
I got the commands from here.

I was a bit skeptical. It can't be that easy right?? But it was. It worked and I managed to get another 15 mins of free internet. Then after 15 mins, another change and another, but then it was time for my next flight.

If you are on windows or mac my friend, its not the end of the world. A quick google search will tell you how you can change the mac address of your computer as well.

Happy flying!!