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Manual Pages  — BTPAND


btpand – Bluetooth PAN daemon



btpand [-i ifname] [-m mode] -a addr -d device {-s service | -S service [-p psm]}
btpand [-c path] [-i ifname] [-l limit] [-m mode] [-p psm] -d device {-s service | -S service}


The btpand daemon handles Bluetooth Personal Area Networking services in the system. It can operate in client mode as a Personal Area Networking User (PANU) or in server mode as Network Access Point (NAP), Group ad-hoc Network (GN) or PANU host. btpand connects to the system via a tap(4) virtual Ethernet device and forwards Ethernet packets to remote Bluetooth devices using the Bluetooth Network Encapsulation Protocol (BNEP).

The PANU client is the device that uses either the NAP or GN service, or can talk directly to a PANU host in a crossover cable fashion.

A GN host forwards Ethernet packets to each of the connected PAN users as needed but does not provide access to any additional networks.

The NAP service provides some of the features of an Ethernet bridge, with the NAP host forwarding Ethernet packets between each of the connected PAN users, and a different network media.

Note, the only differences between NAP and GN services as implemented by btpand are in the SDP service record. The bridging of packets by the NAP must be configured separately.

The options are as follows:
-a address
  In client mode, address of remote server. May be given as BDADDR or name, in which case btpand will attempt to resolve the address via the bt_gethostbyname(3) call.
-c path
  In server mode, specify path to the sdpd(8) control socket. The default path is /var/run/sdp.
-d device
  Restrict connections to the local device. May be given as BDADDR or name, in which case btpand will attempt to resolve the address via the bt_devaddr(3) call. btpand will set the tap(4) interface physical address to the BDADDR of the Bluetooth radio.
-i ifname
  btpand uses the tap(4) driver to create a new network interface for use. Use this option to select a specific tap(4) device interface which must already be created.
-l limit
  In server mode, limit the number of simultaneous connections. The default limit is 7 for NAP and GN servers, and 1 for a PANU server.
-m mode
  Set L2CAP connection link mode. Supported modes are:

auth require devices to be paired.
  auth, plus enable encryption.
  encryption, plus change of link key.

NOT YET SUPPORTED. Use global device settings to set authentication and encryption.
-p psm
  Use an alternative L2CAP Protocol/Service Multiplexer (PSM) for server mode or client mode (when not using Service Discovery). The default PSM for BNEP is 15 (0x000f).
-s service
  Name of service to provide or connect to, the following services are recognised:

GN Group ad-hoc Network.
NAP Network Access Point.
PANU Personal Area Networking User.
-S service
  As per -s except that btpand will not use SDP services for connection setup.

When providing networking services, the Bluetooth PAN profile says that the 'Class of Device' property of the bluetooth controller SHALL include Networking capability (set bit 0x020000). See hccontrol(8) for details.

After btpand has set up the client or server connection and opened the tap(4) interface, it will create a pid file and detach.


/var/run/tap N.pid


The utility exits 0 on success, and >0 if an error occurs.


    ifconfig tap1 create

    btpand -a host -d mydevice -s NAP -i tap1

    dhclient tap1

Will create a connection to the NAP on host, and link that to the tap1 interface.

    btpand -d mydevice -s GN

Will create a Group Network and register the GN service with the local SDP server.


bluetooth(3), bridge(4), tap(4), dhclient(8), hccontrol(8), ifconfig(8), sdpd(8)

The "Personal Area Networking Profile" and "Bluetooth Network Encapsulation Protocol" specifications are available at



Iain Hibbert


There is no way to supply alternative values for the SDP record.

There is no way to set net type or multicast address filters.

btpand does not do any address routing except to directly connected unicast addresses. All other packets are multicast.

As btpand uses the BDADDR of the Bluetooth radio as the physical address of the tap, only one instance can be run per radio.

btpand can only provide a single service.

BTPAND (8) August 17, 2008

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