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IEEE80211_NODE(9)	 BSD Kernel Developer's Manual	     IEEE80211_NODE(9)

     ieee80211_node — software 802.11 stack node management functions

     #include <net80211/ieee80211_var.h>

     struct ieee80211_node *
     ieee80211_find_rxnode(struct ieee80211com *,
	 const struct ieee80211_frame_min *);

     struct ieee80211_node *
     ieee80211_find_rxnode_withkey(struct ieee80211com *,
	 const struct ieee80211_frame_min *, ieee80211_keyix);

     struct ieee80211_node *
     ieee80211_ref_node(struct ieee80211_node *);

     ieee80211_unref_node(struct ieee80211_node *);

     ieee80211_free_node(struct ieee80211_node *);

     ieee80211_iterate_nodes(struct ieee80211_node_table *,
	 ieee80211_iter_func *f, void *arg);

     ieee80211_dump_nodes(struct ieee80211_node_table *);

     ieee80211_dump_node(struct ieee80211_node *);

     The net80211 layer that supports 802.11 device drivers maintains a data‐
     base of peer stations called the “node table” in the ic_sta entry of the
     ieee80211com structure.  Station mode vaps create an entry for the access
     point the station is associated to.  AP mode vaps create entries for
     associated stations.  Adhoc and mesh mode vaps create entries for neigh‐
     bor stations.  WDS mode vaps create an entry for the peer station.	 Sta‐
     tions for all vaps reside in the same table; each node entry has a ni_vap
     field that identifies the vap that created it.  In some instances an
     entry is used by multiple vaps (e.g. for dynamic WDS a station associated
     to an ap vap may also be the peer of a WDS vap).

     Node table entries are reference counted.	That is, there is a count of
     all long term references that determines when an entry may be reclaimed.
     References are held by every in-flight frame sent to a station to insure
     the entry is not reclaimed while the frame is queued or otherwise held by
     a driver.	Routines that lookup a table entry return a “held reference”
     (i.e. a pointer to a table entry with the reference count incremented).
     The ieee80211_ref_node() and ieee80211_unref_node() calls explicitly
     increment/decrement the reference count of a node, but are rarely used.
     Instead most callers use ieee80211_free_node() to release a reference
     and, if the count goes to zero, reclaim the table entry.

     The station table and its entries are exposed to drivers in several ways.
     Each frame transmitted to a station includes a reference to the associ‐
     ated node in the m_pkthdr.rcvif field.  This reference must be reclaimed
     by the driver when transmit processing is done.  For each frame received
     the driver must lookup the table entry to use in dispatching the frame
     “up the stack”.  This lookup implicitly obtains a reference to the table
     entry and the driver must reclaim the reference when frame processing is
     completed.	 Otherwise drivers frequently inspect the contents of the
     iv_bss node when handling state machine changes as important information
     is maintained in the data structure.

     The node table is opaque to drivers.  Entries may be looked up using one
     of the pre-defined API's or the ieee80211_iterate_nodes() call may be
     used to iterate through all entries to do per-node processing or imple‐
     ment some non-standard search mechanism.  Note that
     ieee80211_iterate_nodes() is single-threaded per-device and the effort
     processing involved is fairly substantial so it should be used carefully.

     Two routines are provided to print the contents of nodes to the console
     for debugging: ieee80211_dump_node() displays the contents of a single
     node while ieee80211_dump_nodes() displays the contents of the specified
     node table.  Nodes may also be displayed using ddb(9) with the “show
     node” directive and the station node table can be displayed with “show

     Node data structures may be extended by the driver to include driver-pri‐
     vate state.  This is done by overriding the ic_node_alloc method used to
     allocate a node table entry.  The driver method must allocate a structure
     that is an extension of the ieee80211_node structure.  For example the
     iwi(4) driver defines a private node structure as:

	   struct iwi_node {
		   struct ieee80211_node   in_node;
		   int			   in_station;

     and then provides a private allocation routine that does this:

	   static struct ieee80211_node *
	   iwi_node_alloc(struct ieee80211vap *vap,
	       const uint8_t mac[IEEE80211_ADDR_LEN])
		   struct iwi_node *in;

		   in = malloc(sizeof (struct iwi_node), M_80211_NODE,
			   M_NOWAIT | M_ZERO);
		   if (in == NULL)
			   return NULL;
		   in->in_station = -1;
		   return &in->in_node;

     Note that when reclaiming a node allocated by the driver the “parent
     method” must be called to ensure net80211 state is reclaimed; for exam‐

	   static void
	   iwi_node_free(struct ieee80211_node *ni)
		   struct ieee80211com *ic = ni->ni_ic;
		   struct iwi_softc *sc = ic->ic_ifp->if_softc;
		   struct iwi_node *in = (struct iwi_node *)ni;

		   if (in->in_station != -1)
			   free_unr(sc->sc_unr, in->in_station);
		   sc->sc_node_free(ni);   /* invoke net80211 free handler */

     Beware that care must be taken to avoid holding references that might
     cause nodes from being reclaimed.	net80211 will reclaim a node when the
     last reference is reclaimed in its data structures.  However if a driver
     holds additional references then net80211 will not recognize this and ta‐
     ble entries will not be reclaimed.	 Such references should not be needed
     if the driver overrides the ic_node_cleanup and/or ic_node_free methods.

     Node table lookups are typically done using a hash of the stations' mac
     address.  When receiving frames this is sufficient to find the node table
     entry for the transmitter.	 But some devices also identify the sending
     station in the device state received with each frame and this data can be
     used to optimize lookups on receive using a companion table called the
     “keytab”.	This table records a separate node table reference that can be
     fetched without any locking using the table index.	 This logic is handled
     with the ieee80211_find_rxnode_withkey() call: if a keytab entry is found
     using the specified index then it is returned directly; otherwise a nor‐
     mal lookup is done and the keytab entry is written using the specified
     index.  If the specified index is IEEE80211_KEYIX_NONE then a normal
     lookup is done without a table update.

     ddb(9), ieee80211(9), ieee80211_proto(9)

BSD				March 29, 2010				   BSD

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