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I am trying to log the MAC address of wifi devices around that try to connect to a free wifi.

I.e. on an iPhone you will often see that screen proposing free wifis around you. In order to display this information the iPhone needs to communicate with the AP before an connection has been established. Hence, it should -generally speaking- be possible to log this, right?

I had a look at Kismet and airodump-ng (on my Mac) and I was able to capture all network traffic, but couldn't extract what I am looking for.

Has someone any links, ideas, .... that might help?

Thanks everyone reading this, Nico


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So I finally found a solution. You can use various tool, most build upon libpcap. Some are tcpdump or tshark, that can directly output on the command line, write to as csv and/or save pcap files. Your wifi device needs to support monitor mode, which is true for most platforms. To get started use wireshark and apply a capture filter "wlan.fc.type_subtype eq 4". –  Nico Apr 11 '13 at 10:23
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