Wireless LAN in a big city + networking question

Discussion in 'Wireless Networking' started by Katie Baynes, Aug 5, 2005.

  1. Katie Baynes

    Katie Baynes Guest

    I am interested in setting up a mobile Wireless LAN in New York.

    The idea is that you have one or possibly more cars with access points
    where people external to the vehicle would need access. Think of this
    in the context of a fire, where different people around the scene need
    access. I am not concerned with external net access, just a LAN. So I'm
    just fishing for opinions.

    Do you think that a single access point with a signal booster would
    cover a large city block? Am I completely nuts? (Probably) What would
    be a better solution?

    If there are multiple WAPs at various points around, is it possible to
    retain transparent connectivity if the person is moving from one WAP to
    another?

    Right now I have WRT54G with the default firmware, would upgrading it
    make a difference? I know there is a pretty active dev group for this
    little guy. Opinions?

    -----------------------------------

    One more question (only marginally related) if a computer running XP
    has two network devices (one CDMA for external internet connectivity
    and one for the wireless LAN) is there a way to lock the route table?
    I can get this to work no problem by messing around with the table
    (adding and deleting routes) but I am not able to lock those settings
    in, they get trounced when one or both network devices are
    disconnected.

    In other words if I never want the default route to be on the wireless
    device, is that possible? I ONLY want the wireless card to access
    192.168.1.* network.

    I know this is alot to ask, but I would appreciate any response. If
    there is a book that should be reading related to the above, please
    point me in the right direction. I am just trying to learn as much as
    possible before I start making purchase requests.

    Katie
     
    Katie Baynes, Aug 5, 2005
    #1
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  2. "Katie Baynes" <> wrote in
    news::

    > I am interested in setting up a mobile Wireless LAN in New York.
    >
    > The idea is that you have one or possibly more cars with access points
    > where people external to the vehicle would need access. Think of this
    > in the context of a fire, where different people around the scene need
    > access. I am not concerned with external net access, just a LAN. So I'm
    > just fishing for opinions.
    >
    > Do you think that a single access point with a signal booster would
    > cover a large city block? Am I completely nuts? (Probably) What would
    > be a better solution?
    >
    > If there are multiple WAPs at various points around, is it possible to
    > retain transparent connectivity if the person is moving from one WAP to
    > another?
    >
    > Right now I have WRT54G with the default firmware, would upgrading it
    > make a difference? I know there is a pretty active dev group for this
    > little guy. Opinions?
    >
    > -----------------------------------
    >
    > One more question (only marginally related) if a computer running XP
    > has two network devices (one CDMA for external internet connectivity
    > and one for the wireless LAN) is there a way to lock the route table?
    > I can get this to work no problem by messing around with the table
    > (adding and deleting routes) but I am not able to lock those settings
    > in, they get trounced when one or both network devices are
    > disconnected.
    >
    > In other words if I never want the default route to be on the wireless
    > device, is that possible? I ONLY want the wireless card to access
    > 192.168.1.* network.
    >
    > I know this is alot to ask, but I would appreciate any response. If
    > there is a book that should be reading related to the above, please
    > point me in the right direction. I am just trying to learn as much as
    > possible before I start making purchase requests.
    >
    > Katie
    >
    >


    Hi Katie --

    I can address one aspect of your query, which is how to deploy wireless so
    that users are not prompted for credentials each time they encounter a new
    access point.

    I am assuming that you want to deploy wireless in a secure manner, which
    means that the signal is encrypted and users must log on in order to access
    the LAN.

    In this scenario you will need a centralized user accounts database such as
    that provided by Active Directory.

    So the approach I would use is to have a laptop running Windows Server 2003
    with the following components installed:

    Active Directory
    Internet Authentication Service (AKA Microsoft RADIUS)
    DHCP
    DNS
    WINS

    In order to provide single-sign on, strong security, and to prevent users
    from having to reauthenticate if they encounter a new access point (which
    by the way have a range, generally speaking, of about 300 feet -- there may
    be others with a longer range, I don't know), you would deploy PEAP-MS-CHAP
    v2 as your authentication method, and you would enable the PEAP Fast
    Reconnect feature of this auth method.

    When you deploy PEAP (which you configure in IAS remote access policy and
    on clients, which you can configure automatically if you use Group Policy),
    the IAS server caches properties of the client during the first
    authentication in an object called a TLS handle. If the client roams to
    another access point that is also configured as a RADIUS client at the same
    IAS server (this is an important point), the IAS server uses the cached TLS
    handle to authenticate the user/computer, so the user is not prompted for
    credentials. I have discussed this feature with people in the medical
    profession and they love not having to stop what they are doing to reenter
    their credentials.

    Another advantage of PEAP is that users supply password-based credentials,
    but client computers also authenticate the IAS server with the IAS server
    certificate -- mutual authentication prevents some man-in-the-middle
    attacks that might be likely out on the street.

    If you are interested in investigating further, you can find whitepapers
    and other interesting documentation at
    http://www.microsoft.com/windowsserver2003/technologies/ias/default.mspx

    The deployment whitepaper for this scenario is aimed at Enterprises but you
    can easily scale it down to your scenario. It is "Enterprise Deployment of
    Secure 802.11 Networks Using Microsoft Windows."

    PEAP is discussed in "The Advantages of Protected Extensible Authentication
    Protocol (PEAP)."

    --
    James McIllece, Microsoft

    Please do not send email directly to this alias. This is my online account
    name for newsgroup participation only.

    This posting is provided "AS IS" with no warranties, and confers no rights.
     
    James McIllece [MS], Aug 5, 2005
    #2
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  3. Katie Baynes

    N. Miller Guest

    On 5 Aug 2005 11:02:41 -0700, Katie Baynes wrote:

    > One more question (only marginally related) if a computer running XP
    > has two network devices (one CDMA for external internet connectivity
    > and one for the wireless LAN) is there a way to lock the route table?
    > I can get this to work no problem by messing around with the table
    > (adding and deleting routes) but I am not able to lock those settings
    > in, they get trounced when one or both network devices are
    > disconnected.
    >
    > In other words if I never want the default route to be on the wireless
    > device, is that possible? I ONLY want the wireless card to access
    > 192.168.1.* network.
    >
    > I know this is alot to ask, but I would appreciate any response. If
    > there is a book that should be reading related to the above, please
    > point me in the right direction. I am just trying to learn as much as
    > possible before I start making purchase requests.


    Use the -p switch when you run the "route add" command. The -p switch make
    the added route "persistent" across reboots.

    --
    Norman
    ~Win dain a lotica, En vai tu ri, Si lo ta
    ~Fin dein a loluca, En dragu a sei lain
    ~Vi fa-ru les shutai am, En riga-lint
     
    N. Miller, Aug 6, 2005
    #3
  4. Katie Baynes

    Pavel A. Guest

    "Katie Baynes" <> wrote in message news:...
    > Do you think that a single access point with a signal booster would
    > cover a large city block? Am I completely nuts? (Probably)


    Hmm may be you're right here.

    > What would be a better solution?


    There already are some well established providers of fast deployment WLAN services
    (by the way - don't call this "mobile" - it isn't )
    Try to find them, study, and see how you can provide a competitive service.

    Good luck
    --PA
     
    Pavel A., Aug 7, 2005
    #4
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