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The 802.11 State Machine: Joining Your Friends

A station will search for a BSS to join by either active, passive scanning or both. In passive scanning a STA listens to Beacons and uses the information contained in the Beacon frame to decide which BSS to join. In active scanning the STA sends a probe request. Any AP that hears the Probe request will send a Probe Response (although with some traffic management technologies the response may be delayed. For example, if band steering is in use Probe Response can be suppressed to steer the STA to the preferred band. The STA then decides which BSS to join. The STA is still unauthenticated and unassociated. Probe Requests and Beacons are not unicast. Probe Response are unicast and are theref



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