HowTo: Find Out Router Mac Address

by on February 7, 2006 · 21 comments· LAST UPDATED April 11, 2012

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How do I display or find out the MAC address for my small home / business router?

MAC is acronym for Media Access Control address. It is a unique identifier attached to almost most all networking equipment such as Routers, Ethernet cards, Switches/Hubs and other devices. If you do not have access to router admin interface (via telnet or webbased gui), use the following method to find out router MAC address.

arp Command

You need to use the arp command (available on both Windows, Linux/Unixish systems). arp command manipulates the kernel's ARP cache in various ways. The primary options are clearing an address mapping entry and manually setting up one. For debugging purposes, the arp program also allows a complete dump of the ARP cache. arp shows the entries of the specified hosts. If the hostname parameter is not used, all entries will be displayed.

Task: Find Out Router Mac Address Under Linux / Mac OS X / Unix Like Operating Systems

First, find out your default router (gateway IP address), enter:
$ /sbin/route
Sample outputs:

Kernel IP routing table
Destination     Gateway         Genmask         Flags Metric Ref    Use Iface
10.0.31.18      *               255.255.255.255 UH    0      0        0 ppp0
38.96.196.94    192.168.1.2     255.255.255.255 UGH   0      0        0 eth0
192.168.1.0     *               255.255.255.0   U     0      0        0 eth0
10.0.0.0        *               255.0.0.0       U     0      0        0 ppp0
default         192.168.1.2     0.0.0.0         UG    0      0        0 eth0

The default router IP is 192.168.1.2. Send ICMP ECHO_REQUEST (ping request) to route IP 192.168.1.2, enter:
$ ping -c 4 192.168.1.2
Type the following command to find out your router MAC address. enter:
$ /usr/sbin/arp -a
OR
$ arp -a
Sample outputs:

router (192.168.1.2) at 00:08:5C:00:00:01 [ether] on eth0
fbsd6 (192.168.1.16) at 00:0F:EA:91:04:07 [ether] on eth0

In above example 00:08:5C:00:00:01 is MAC address for router.

A Note About telnet / ssh Access

On most router remote management via telnet / ssh is off by default. If router remote management is turned on, type the following command to login into router via telnet or ssh command (telnet command works under MS-Windows oses too):
$ telnet 192.168.1.2
OR
$ ssh user@192.168.1.2
Sample output:

Welcome to nixCraft Router!
Login: admin
Password:

Once logged in type the ifconfig command, enter:
$ ifconfig br0
Output:

br0
        Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:08:5C:00:00:01
        inet addr:192.168.1.2   Bcast:192.168.1.255  Mask:255.255.255.0
        UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
        RX packets:48574 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
        TX packets:61329 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
        collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
        RX bytes:9146189 (8.7 MiB)  TX bytes:74456679 (71.0 MiB)

Please note that interface name (br0) may be different on your router. Use ifconfig -a command to find out interface names.

A Note About WebGUI

Almost all modern routers can be configured via browser based web administration GUI. You can access this interface by accessing the IP address (which by default will be 192.168.0.1 or 192.168.1.1 unless you have changed it. You may refer to the manual of your router to know the default IP address) of the router on a web browser. In our example, 192.168.1.2 is router IP. First, type http://192.168.1.2 in a browser. The router login screen appears. You need to supply the username (in most cases it is admin), and the password. The router logs you in. Click on Status tab (or similar option in your web gui):

Find Router Mac Address

Fig.01: Find Router Mac Address


Another example from my linksys router, that is directly connected to the Internet via high speed ADSL2+ connection:
Linksys router

Fig.02: Linksys router mac address (WAN interface)

Task: Find Out Mac Address Under MS-Windows XP/NT/2003/7/Vista

If you are using Microsoft Windows XP/7/Vista (or 2003/2008 server edition) then you need to open MS-DOS shell prompt first. Click on Start > Run > Type cmd command followed by ENTER key. At C:\> prompt, type arp -a command as follows. This command is available only if the Internet Protocol (TCP/IP) protocol is installed as a component in the properties of a network adapter in Network Connections:
arp -a

Page last updated at 6:55 PM, April 11, 2012.

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{ 21 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Mobile guy January 16, 2008 at 1:45 pm

Very useful, thanks!

Reply

2 harsha March 15, 2009 at 6:36 am

Thank you sir, i was helpful.

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3 harsha March 15, 2009 at 6:37 am

i mean to say it was helpfull sorry spell mistake earlier.

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4 sivaram March 24, 2009 at 2:32 pm

thanks alot, the information that you provided was useful to me.

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5 shahid April 21, 2009 at 9:25 am

i am very excited to know the ip dos command.please help me…….

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6 Dheeraj April 22, 2009 at 8:31 am

Thank u very much. very usefull commands and i’m going to write these in my mind.

Thanks again.

Reply

7 shahid April 25, 2009 at 12:21 pm

please give me major command of windows xp,Specially on networking

Reply

8 Major Commando June 11, 2009 at 7:12 pm

shahid asked:
please give me major command of windows xp,Specially on networking

Go to Start, Run. Type in CMD and click OK.
This opens a command window in DOS mode.
Then, type IPCONFIG and press Enter.
Also
IPCONFIG -H (for help with the command options)
IPCONFIG -ALL (To display all of the network parameters on that machine)

Every Windows system comes with a Help system, learn how to use it!

(RTFM – Read The Formal Manual)

Good Luck!

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9 confilit January 6, 2010 at 9:34 pm

sir.. i have claim here.. this command ‘arp -a’ use to get Mac address of LAN port side.. but if u need WAN Mac address.. then i think its better way to go Router GUI setup .. such as to see & find in ‘Device Info’ etc.. or some other router Option..

Thanks

Reply

10 Salifu Abdul-Mumin January 27, 2010 at 7:13 pm

Is there a way I can retrieve the mac address of packets arriving at my host in LAN

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11 Bimal das March 21, 2010 at 6:19 pm

Sir, plz tell me about collisions means

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12 Cassie April 6, 2010 at 8:21 am

Thank you so much! I did this while my boyfriend was sleeping and boy was he sure proud of me! This information was extremely helpful and I learned a lot. I will definitely be guiding friends here to help fix their problems as well!

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13 Thomas August 5, 2010 at 4:03 am

this helped me a lot thanks

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14 willy December 1, 2010 at 8:14 am

good job

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15 akanksha April 19, 2011 at 7:18 am

how can we check if there is any hub connected in our network

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16 Drygo April 21, 2011 at 2:49 pm

My gateway adress is 10.0.1.1 and its responding to ping. But i cant reach my router in the webbrowser with that. i dont know why, cause it says its my gateway (router ip). Are the router blocking connectins or something? and is it anyway to fix it?

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17 Ritesh May 30, 2011 at 3:43 am

Hi,

Command to find MAC IP address from the LAN same Subnet.

for ip in $(seq 1 254); do arping -c 1 172.16.0.$ip | grep Unicast >>/home/ree/ipmacfind.txt; done ;

Thanks

Reply

18 Madhab Mathema July 19, 2011 at 9:37 am

Very helpful indeed! Thank you
I wonder if command “arp -a” gives MAC address of my wireless router if the command is given on a desktop connected to LAN by ethernet (My workplace uses both integrated wireless and wired Internet access).

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19 Raphae Halim February 28, 2012 at 9:45 am

I was able to find out the WAN side MAC address of my ADSL router. Telnet , and ifconfig did the trick. Thanks! ;-)

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20 Dennis April 11, 2012 at 11:53 am

I am using XP but the command C:\> arp -a is not recognised. I tried alternate spaces but no success. Please advise? Thanks

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21 nixCraft April 11, 2012 at 12:33 pm

To display the ARP cache tables for all interfaces, type (no need to type c:>):

arp -a

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