How to Find and Change the MAC Address of ESP32?

The ESP32, a versatile and powerful microcontroller, plays a pivotal role in the ever-expanding realm of the Internet of Things (IoT). But have you ever delved into the world of its unique identifier, the Media Access Control (MAC) address? This comprehensive guide equips you with the knowledge to find the ESP32's MAC address and, with caution, change it when necessary.

Demystifying the ESP32's MAC Address: A Guide to Find and Change
Demystifying the ESP32's MAC Address: A Guide to Find and Change

What is a MAC Address?

A MAC address is a unique identifier assigned to network interfaces for communications on the physical network segment. It is a 48-bit address typically displayed as six pairs of hexadecimal digits, such as `24:6F:28:AA:BB:CC`. In the context of ESP32, the MAC address is crucial for networking operations, including Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity.

Understanding the ESP32's MAC Address:

Imagine your ESP32 as a citizen in the digital world. Like a person with a social security number for identification, each ESP32 boasts a pre-programmed, unique MAC address. This 6-byte alphanumeric code acts as its network fingerprint, allowing it to connect and communicate with other devices on the same network.

Finding the ESP32's MAC Address Using Arduino IDE:

Retrieving the MAC address of your ESP32 is a straightforward process. Here's a step-by-step guide using the Arduino IDE:

  • Embrace the Arduino IDE: The journey begins by incorporating the WiFi library into your Arduino sketch. Simply add #include <WiFi.h> at the beginning of your code.
  • Unlocking the MAC Address with WiFi.macAddress(): This built-in function serves as your key. When called, it retrieves the ESP32's MAC address and presents it as a six-byte array formatted as a string.
  • Serial Monitor Magic: To witness the unveiled MAC address, leverage the Serial.print() function within your code's setup() loop. Upload the sketch to your ESP32, and upon opening the serial monitor at a baud rate of 115200, you'll see the ESP32's MAC address displayed in all its glory.

Code Snippet for Finding MAC Address:

Finding the ESP32's MAC Address Using

Follow the following steps to find the esp32 MAC address using Python.

Install Ensure you have Python installed, then install using pip: Connect ESP32: Connect your ESP32 to the computer via USB.Run the Command: Execute the following command to get the MAC address:

A Word of Caution: Changing the MAC Address

While finding the MAC address is simple, altering it requires a more cautious approach. Here's why:

  • A Temporary Transformation: The ESP32's MAC address isn't a permanent fixture. Code modifications can change it, but the change persists only until the device restarts or a new sketch is uploaded without the MAC address setting code.
  • Network Nuances: Modifying the MAC address might disrupt network connectivity. If your router or network has MAC address filtering enabled, the device might be denied access after the change. It's crucial to understand your network settings before proceeding.
  • Ethical Considerations: Changing MAC addresses to impersonate other devices is unethical and can disrupt network security. Exercise responsible practices when modifying the MAC address, and only do so if necessary.

Modifying the MAC Address using Arduino IDE(Proceed with Caution):

If you have a legitimate reason to change the ESP32's MAC address, here's a detailed guide using the Arduino IDE:

  • Include Necessary Libraries: As before, incorporate the WiFi library with #include <WiFi.h>. Additionally, include the esp_wifi.h library using #include <esp_wifi.h>.
  • Crafting Your New MAC Address: Define a new MAC address as a six-byte array using the uint8_t data type. Remember, the first byte must be even (doesn't end in 1) for a valid MAC address.
  • Leveraging esp_wifi_set_mac(): Utilize the esp_wifi_set_mac() function from the esp_wifi.h library. This function takes two arguments:
    • WIFI_IF_STA: This specifies the WiFi interface (Station mode in this case).
    • newMAC: The new MAC address array you defined.
  • Checking the Success: After setting the MAC address, employ Serial.print() to display a success message upon a return value of zero, indicating a successful change. Conversely, a non-zero value signifies an error.

Code Snippet for Changing MAC Address:


  • This code first retrieves the original MAC address using WiFi.macAddress() and displays it for verification.
  • It then defines a new MAC address array named newMAC. Remember to replace the placeholder values with your desired MAC address, ensuring the first byte is even for validity.
  • Within the setup() function, the esp_wifi_set_mac() function attempts to set the new MAC address. It takes two arguments:
    • WIFI_IF_STA: This specifies the WiFi interface (Station mode in this case).
    • newMAC: The new MAC address array you defined.
  • The code checks the return value of esp_wifi_set_mac(). If it's zero, the MAC address was successfully changed, and a confirmation message is displayed. Otherwise, an error message is shown, indicating an issue with the process.
  • Finally, the code retrieves the new MAC address using WiFi.macAddress() again and displays it for confirmation.


Currently, does not support changing the MAC address directly. However, it can be used to read the MAC address as previously demonstrated.

Important Considerations and Best Practices for Managing MAC Addresses:

  • Ensure Uniqueness: When changing the MAC address, ensure it remains unique to avoid conflicts on the network.
  • Backup Original Address: Always note down the original MAC address before making changes.
  • Remember to upload this sketch after making the necessary changes to your ESP32.
  • The ESP32 should have the newly assigned MAC address after a successful upload and restart.
  • Be mindful of potential network connectivity issues after changing the MAC address, especially if MAC address filtering is enabled on your network. It's recommended to consult your router's documentation or network administrator if unsure.

The Bottom Line: Knowledge and Responsibility

Understanding the ESP32's MAC address and modification process empowers you to effectively manage your IoT devices. While changing the MAC address might be necessary for specific scenarios (like cloning a device for testing purposes), prioritize responsible practices and network security. By following the outlined steps with caution and adhering to ethical guidelines, you can successfully navigate the world of ESP32 MAC addresses.

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