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Wireless security and XP

 
 
Lem
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      03-11-2009
Gordon wrote:
> "Gordon" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>> Strange problem. My wife's laptop - XP SP2 cannot connect to our WAP
>> that has WEP 128 bit security. She can connect to other wireless
>> networks with (possibly) 64 Bit WEP. (I don't know the setup of this
>> other network but I'm guessing at 64 bit from the password length).
>> Does XP not connect to 128 bit WEP?
>>

>
>
> Thanks to all who responded - I've just found the answer. XP will NOT do
> Shared Key whereas Vista will.
>


I glad that you got things working, but your conclusion is not correct.
Windows XP certainly does support "shared key" encryption. In fact,
the overwhelming majority of home wireless networks that are encrypted
use this feature.

--
Lem -- MS-MVP

To the moon and back with 2K words of RAM and 36K words of ROM.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_Guidance_Computer
http://history.nasa.gov/afj/compessay.htm
 
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Gordon
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      03-11-2009
"Lem" <lemp40@unknownhost> wrote in message
news:%(E-Mail Removed)...
> Gordon wrote:
>> "Gordon" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>>> Strange problem. My wife's laptop - XP SP2 cannot connect to our WAP
>>> that has WEP 128 bit security. She can connect to other wireless
>>> networks with (possibly) 64 Bit WEP. (I don't know the setup of this
>>> other network but I'm guessing at 64 bit from the password length). Does
>>> XP not connect to 128 bit WEP?
>>>

>>
>>
>> Thanks to all who responded - I've just found the answer. XP will NOT do
>> Shared Key whereas Vista will.
>>

>
> I glad that you got things working, but your conclusion is not correct.
> Windows XP certainly does support "shared key" encryption. In fact, the
> overwhelming majority of home wireless networks that are encrypted use
> this feature.
>



Well I've just converted my Tosh Netbook from Ubuntu to XP and that wouldn't
connect to the Wireless EITHER - until I changed the WAP from Shared Key to
Open.
So something funny is going on...

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and the FULL contents of any error message(s)

 
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Lem
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Posts: n/a
 
      03-11-2009
Gordon wrote:
> "Lem" <lemp40@unknownhost> wrote in message
> news:%(E-Mail Removed)...
>> Gordon wrote:
>>> "Gordon" <(E-Mail Removed)> wrote in message
>>> news:(E-Mail Removed)...
>>>> Strange problem. My wife's laptop - XP SP2 cannot connect to our WAP
>>>> that has WEP 128 bit security. She can connect to other wireless
>>>> networks with (possibly) 64 Bit WEP. (I don't know the setup of this
>>>> other network but I'm guessing at 64 bit from the password length).
>>>> Does XP not connect to 128 bit WEP?
>>>>
>>>
>>>
>>> Thanks to all who responded - I've just found the answer. XP will NOT
>>> do Shared Key whereas Vista will.
>>>

>>
>> I glad that you got things working, but your conclusion is not
>> correct. Windows XP certainly does support "shared key" encryption. In
>> fact, the overwhelming majority of home wireless networks that are
>> encrypted use this feature.
>>

>
>
> Well I've just converted my Tosh Netbook from Ubuntu to XP and that
> wouldn't connect to the Wireless EITHER - until I changed the WAP from
> Shared Key to Open.
> So something funny is going on...
>


Ahh. So *that's* what you did.

I agree that the terminology is confusing. There is a difference
between the method used for *authentication* and the method used for
*encryption* of the wireless traffic once authentication has been
established. If you are forced to use WEP (hardly effective these days)
you should use "open" authentication (as you discovered). The following
excerpt from a MS TechNet article may be of some interest:

<quote: http://technet.microsoft.com/en-us/library/bb457016.aspx>
The following types of authentication are available for use with 802.11
networks:
* Open System
* Shared Key
* IEEE 802.1X
* WPA or WPA2 with preshared key
Open system authentication is not really authentication, because all it
does is identify a wireless node using its wireless adapter hardware
address.
....
Shared key authentication verifies that the wireless client joining the
wireless network has knowledge of a secret key. During the
authentication process, the wireless client proves it has knowledge of
the secret key without actually sending the secret key. For
infrastructure mode, all the wireless clients and the wireless AP use
the same shared key. For ad hoc mode, all the wireless clients of the ad
hoc wireless network use the same shared key.
....
For a home or small business that cannot do 802.1X authentication, WPA
and WPA2 provide a preshared key authentication method for
infrastructure mode wireless networks. The preshared key is configured
on the wireless AP and each wireless client. The initial WPA or WPA2
encryption key is derived from the authentication process, which
verifies that both the wireless client and the wireless AP are
configured with the same preshared key. Each initial WPA or WPA2
encryption key is unique.
....
The following are the recommended security configurations, in order of
most to least secure:
....
* For the home or small business network that does not contain
a domain controller and a RADIUS server and supports WPA2, use WPA2 and
preshared key authentication.
* For the home or small business network that does not contain
a domain controller and a RADIUS server and supports WPA, use WPA and
preshared key authentication.

For the home or small business network that does not contain a domain
controller and a RADIUS server and does not support either WPA or WPA2,
use open system authentication and WEP. However, this is not a
recommended security configuration and should only be used temporarily
when transitioning to a WPA or WPA2-based wireless network.
</quote>

The article goes on to explain why shared-key authentication in
conjunction with WEP is less secure than open authentication and WEP
(aside from the fact that WEP is in general very easy to defeat these
days) because it is easy for a sniffer to grab the key during the
authentication process.


--
Lem -- MS-MVP

To the moon and back with 2K words of RAM and 36K words of ROM.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Apollo_Guidance_Computer
http://history.nasa.gov/afj/compessay.htm
 
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