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AFAIK a device (a wifi-enabled RPi) with Zero-config networking enabled should be accessible via HOSTNAME.local without first having to join a network.

I have several Raspberry Pi running Jessie, with Edimax wifi adapters, and running Avahi. As expected, they are accessible from my Mac via HOSTNAME.local, HOSTNAME-1.local, etc... but ONLY if I add an entry to /etc/wpa_supplicant/wpa_supplicant.conf so they join the network.

It looks like the issue is that there is no IP4 address assigned to the Wifi dongle unless it is configured to join a network.

My goal is to have mobile devices with a web configuration page that does not require first authenticating on a network... eg, a devie that is accessible anywhere with or without an existing wifi network by browsing HOSTNAME.local.

Besides Avahi (which is working), what else is required for a wifi-enabled RPi to host its own config web page w/o joining an existing network?

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    Your question is vague. Obviously zero-conf can only find an accessible device i.e. on a network or directly connected. – Milliways Feb 24 '16 at 10:59
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If you don't want to have the Raspberry Pi join a network your only other option is to have it be an access point and have your mobile device connect to its wireless network.

There are a number of tutorials about how to do this. For example: https://learn.adafruit.com/setting-up-a-raspberry-pi-as-a-wifi-access-point/overview

  • is configuring as an 'ad hoc' network a distinct third option? – jpwynn Feb 24 '16 at 19:06
  • That might work as well but setting it up as an access point will make it easier to find and connect to it. I think securing ad hoc networks is harder as well. – Craig Feb 24 '16 at 19:30
  • That tutorial is old, and probably won't work with Jessie, or even recent Wheezy. – Milliways Feb 25 '16 at 1:32

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