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macchiato: MAC Changer Hiding Identification And Transposing OUIs


macchiato is a Bash script that assigns a random MAC address to specified network interfaces. It is meant to run at boot time.

Its twist is that the MAC addresses it assigns to network interfaces is limited to a few OUI prefixes. A MAC address's first 3 bytes indicates the manufacturer of the hardware, as defined by the IEEE's OUI registry. As such, attempting to randomize this part of the MAC address by simply picking a random sequence of 3 bytes uniformly results very often in MAC addresses that aren't registered to any publicized OUI, which is a very strong indication that the user is using a spoofed MAC address.

Trying to be smarter about it by restricting the subset of 3-byte sequences to registered OUIs only is a good step, but many of the companies associated with those OUIs are obscure, and often have gone bankrupt or have manufactured very few chips. As such, seeing a MAC address from them is almost certainly a giveaway that the user is using a spoofed MAC address.

macchiato lets you define which network interfaces you want to use a spoofed MAC, and which classes of OUI prefixes the random MAC addresses should use. For example, you can restrict your laptop's onboard wireless interface to only be assigned MAC addresses that are actually found in laptop wireless chips.


If you need reasons as to why spoofing your MAC address can be a good thing, read this blog post on the subject or the Wikipedia article about it.

If you need reasons as to why you should use this over manual configuration or machchanger, you shouldn't. This script uses the ip command to do the actual MAC address assignment. The only thing you get out of it is control over the prefix of the MAC addresses assigned to each interface. This yields more believable spoofed MAC addresses. It also lets you define a blacklist of OUI prefixes you never want to see assigned to your network interface.


Note: Throughout this document, items written in <angle brackets> are meant to be replaced by the user, and items in [square brackets] are optional.

Install it

The Arch way:

There is a macchiato-git package available in the Arch User Repository:

$ yaourt -S macchiato-git
The other way:

Check out the repository wherever you wish to install the program:

$ sudo git clone git:// /usr/share/macchiato

And you probably want to create a directory to stash your configuration into:

$ sudo mkdir /etc/macchiato.d

Configure it

$ sudo cp /usr/share/macchiato/conf/ /etc/macchiato.d/<interface>.sh
$ sudo $EDITOR /etc/macchiato.d/<interface>.sh

The file you just copied should contain all the information you need as comments.

Generate udev rules

$ sudo /usr/share/macchiato/ /etc/macchiato.d

This script will:

  • Go through all your network interfaces
  • Attempt to determine their burned-in MAC address
  • Ask you for it if it cannot be sure about its decision
  • Generate udev rules to run macchiato whenever that interface appears (whether that means on boot or when you plug it in)

Alternatively, you can also use the provided systemd service, macchiato.service. If you didn't install macchiato from a package, you need to install the service file to systemd's directory:

$ sudo /usr/share/macchiato/

Then (whether you installed from a package or not), you need to enable it:

$ sudo systemctl enable macchiato.service

This service assumes that you are using /etc/macchiato.d as configuration directory.

Run it manually

Usage 1: Apply configuration to all network interfaces:
$ macchiato [<confdir>]

For each file inside confdir (or inside $scriptDir/conf if not provided), it will apply that configuration to the interface it is meant for. If confdir contains a file named, this configuration will be applied to all network interfaces which don't have a interface-specific configuration file. If there is no such file, then no configuration will be applied to network interfaces which don't have a interface-specific configuration file.

Usage 2: Apply configuration to selected network interfaces:
$ macchiato [<confdir>] <interface1> [<interface2> [...]]

macchiato will check for interface-specific configuration for each of the provided interfaces inside confdir, or inside $scriptDir/conf if confdir is not provided. It will not affect any other interface.

Usage 3: Config-less usage
$ macchiato --manual <interface>
                     [-o <class1> [-o <class2> [...]]]
                     [-b <blacklisted1> [-b <blacklisted2> [...]]]
                     [-e <ending>] [-r] [-d]

Manual mode allows you to run macchiato without having a config file. You must specify --manual as the first argument in order to use this. The next argument (<interface>) should be the name of the network interface to apply the rules to. Then, you can use the following:

  • -o <class> or --oui-class <class>: Specifies a class of OUI prefixes to use for this interface. For example, if you specify --oui-class wired_console, then the OUIs defined in $scriptDir/oui/ will be added to the list of OUIs to consider. You can specify this multiple times to add other possible OUI classes. If no class is specified, the interface's OUI prefix will be preserved (but the ending will be changed).
  • -b <blaclistedOUI> or --blacklist <blaclistedOUI>: Specifies single OUI that should never be used. You can specify this multiple times to blacklist multiple OUIs.
  • -e <ending> or --ending <ending>: Specifies the last 3 bytes to use for the generated MAC address (example: dd:ee:ff). If unspecified, these 3 bytes will be chosen randomly.
  • -r or --random: If specified, macchiato will use /dev/random instead of /dev/urandom as a source of randomness. On Linux systems, this may block for some time until enough entropy is available, but provides higher-quality randomness used when generating a MAC address. This option requires having xxd installed.
  • -d or --no-down: If specified, macchiato will not bring the interface down before changing its MAC address, and will not bring it back up again afterwards; it will just leave the interface in the state it already is.

Environment variables

The following environment variables are reconized:

  • MACCHIATO_DEBUG: If set, turns on Bash debugging.
  • MACCHIATO_IFCONFIG_COMMAND: If set, macchiato will assume that ifconfig is installed and can be run by running this command. This allows macchiato to be used on Android devices, where ifconfig may be provided by busybox and one needs to run busybox ifconfig <arguments>.


If you wish to expand the OUI list (and you are welcome to!), please send a pull request or post a comment on this blog post. Your hardware should be "common enough", meaning that there should exist a decent number of this type of hardware actively in use. Make sure to specify:

  • Device class (Laptop wireless interface? Desktop PCI card? Mobile phone bluetooth adapter? Network printer ethernet interface? etc.)
  • OUI prefix, in lowercase hh:hh:hh format
  • Organization name corresponding to the OUI prefix, according to the IEEE's public OUI listing. Optional unless you are making a pull request.
  • Device information (if it's a mobile device, what model is it? If it's a motherboard's integrated network adapter, what's the model and revision number of the board? etc.)

If sending a pull request, please make sure to follow the same format as existing OUI lists. Each line has the format aa:bb:cc='Organization|Model name', with lowercase colon-separated OUI. Keep the lines sorted by OUI prefix. Feel free to suggest new files for new classes of hardware.


macchiato's source code and OUI lists are licensed under the 3-clause BSD license.

The logo above is part of the Oxygen Icons project and is licensed under the Creative Common Attribution-ShareAlike 3.0 License. It is not included as part of a macchiato installation. As such, packagers should exclude this file from redistributable packages, and use the license file LICENSE.redistrib.


  • Name idea by Esky
  • Icon from the Oxygen Icons project
  • All the folks who helped gathering OUIs in the wild


MAC spoofing with a restricted range of OUI prefixes




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