Stop wpa-supplicant spamming your logs to death

This post applies to Kubuntu 14.10 running KDE 4.14.2, other DEs and Debain-derived distros almost certainly suffer the exact same issue.

Whilst looking through my syslog to figure out why a game was causing the entire laptop to lock-up (note to self: find a better alternative to “Ctrl-Alt-PrtSrc-REISUB”) I found a slew to bleatings from wpa-supplicant filling up my log. My first thought was “Oh no! 733t h4x0r5 have my system!” as there were also various encrypted connection attempts being stopped by the firewall.

Not the case, I am simply not that important. Hey ho.

The log messages look a bit like this:

ubuntu wpa_supplicant[1161]: wlan0: CTRL-EVENT-SCAN-STARTED
ubuntu wpa_supplicant[1161]: nl80211: send_and_recv->nl_recvmsgs failed: -33

Luckily there is an easy fix: simply open network-manager, go into the settings for your particular WiFi connect and ensure the BSSID is set (i.e. non-blank). Take care though, this could have consequences in commercial deployments: full details.

There are two bugs logged on launchpad related to this: 1323089 and 578431.

Leave a Reply