Revisiting the Raspberry Pi Zero WiFi Hacking Gadget

8 min readApr 4, 2021

Fun and adventure with the $10 Raspberry Pi

My “Go bag” with a Pi Zero, USB cable, and USB battery bank.

Why Are We Revisiting This?

The Raspberry Pi Zero is very flexible and can provide a lot of capabilities for the low end of the Raspberry Pi range. We’re going to look at adding more capabilities and what you actually get with them. This isn’t a “how to” guide for WiFi penetration testing, but we will look at those capabilities, and how to appropriately leverage the Pi Zero in different scenarios.

The article is informational. Do not break the law.

Requirements and Setup

To get the most out of this setup, you’ll need a Raspberry Pi Zero W ($10 at adafruit), a decent case (mine was $7 from Amazon), a sturdy micro USB cable (there are a lot of choices, but realistically this is around $6), and a USB battery bank (this Amazon bank is overkill, and is $22, shop around.) You’ll also need a Micro SD Card, I personally recommend the Samsung PRO Endurance for all Raspberry Pi projects, it’s $11 for 32 GB, more than enough space. On the high end this project comes out to $56, but I’m sure you have a cable hanging around and possibly a small USB battery bank. You can also find a case that doesn’t cost 70% the cost of the Pi, and use a cheaper SD Card. I just like nice things that last.

Setup is very similar to my previous write up on the Pi Zero W WiFi hacking gadget. Image the SD Card with Rasbian Lite. Configure the boot partition for headless NDIS/Ethernet Gadget connection. Circuit Basics has a good tutorial, but essentially, besides adding a ssh file to boot, edit config.txt and add dtoverlay=dwc2 to the end of the file. This file is formatted LF, so keep that in mind. Edit cmdline.txt and add modules-load=dwc2,g_ether after rootwait. Inset the SD Card and plug the USB cable into the Pi and your computer. If you’re using a Windows PC, you will want to install Bonjour so you can find the Pi using the address raspberrypi.local (Macs and most Linux distros support mDNS by default.)

Finding your Pi using raspberrypi.local

Cybersecurity architect. Security dev and researcher. Infosec nerd. Linux enthusiast. All opinions and views are my own. Polite, professional, prepared.