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Ghost client in captive portal



We regulary got problem with some guests trying to use our captive portal : they did not get the captive portal login page, but the administration login page instead ! Generally we try to change them from 2.4 to 5ghz, or reboot there pc, or last solution is to reboot the WAP device. But this morning I spoted something : the pc that have the problem and with the mac address "ac:e0:10:28:02:91" was connected one of our WAP (we got 3 WP 371) and was assignated the IP "" by the DHCP. But when I checked the "Associated Clients" form the Captive Portal menu, I saw another mac address associated to this IP address ! This unknown mac address was not connected to any of our WAP, was not known by the DHCP, and was not connected to our network ! It is a "ghost" client that was not clean. To test this, I reserved another IP for the "ac:e0:10:28:02:91" and after reconnection, it immediatly printed the captive portal page ... I searched how to clean it and did not find anything, more than that, it never timeout (been hours since I detected that). The only solution to clean it (at least did not find another one) is to reboot the WAP.

Has anyone got this "ghost" think and has a solution ? I don't want to reboot all the WAP devices every time it failed to timeout a client.


There is some screenshots of the "Associated Clients" and the "Captive Portal Associated Clients" from this morning. You can see the PC "ac:e0:10:28:02:91" connected to VAP1 (captive portal vlan) with his new IP (, and the Ghost device with the IP

2018-12-13 11 36 13.png2018-12-13 11 12 13.png



If someone has any idea, I will take it !


Gwenaël from EMOSIST

Cisco Employee

Dear Customer,


The issue you are experiencing may need further in-depth investigation. Therefore I would advise you to open a service request with us. If you would send me in a private message your Cisco ID and the serial number of your access point(s) I will take care of it.


Borislav Atanassov
Cisco Small Business TAC