XP wireless operation question...

Discussion in 'Wireless Networking' started by intrepid_dw@hotmail.com, Jan 2, 2006.

  1. Guest

    All:

    Could someone describe for me (or perhaps point to an MS web page) that
    describes the protocol/process used by an XP Pro client to authenticate
    in a domain environment at a) the machine level (when the machine logs
    into the domain via its trust account), b) the user level, c) the
    network level, when it connects to a secured wireless network.

    My question revolves what I perceive as a catch-22 in the way XP Pro
    clients behave. An XP Pro client will not automatically select a
    wireless network; the user must do so. However, for a user to log in,
    he must authenticate to the domain, implying a secure wireless
    connection has already been selected and connection established, which
    supposedly can't be done before login!

    See the dilemma? Can't connect wirelessly until user picks a
    connection; user can't pick a connection until he logs in; can't log in
    until he connects....

    There's a link missing in that chain, so if someone can explain how we
    overcome this merry-go-round, I'd appreciate it. I've tried looking on
    MS and other sites for an explanation and have come up dry. I have to
    think I'm just not understanding some aspect of the protocol correctly.

    Thanks in advance,
    dew

    ps Please reply to group; email here is long since dead.
     
    , Jan 2, 2006
    #1
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  2. GTS Guest

    This is a somewhat common problem these days (and is even worse if trying to
    use roaming profiles). Most wireless adaptors will not establish a
    connection until a user logon has completed, and just as you say, this is a
    catch-22 in a domain environment. (I've seen some issues even in a
    workgroup environment when wanting to run batch files on start up to map
    resources, as the wireless connection is often established too late in the
    user local logon process.) There doesn't seem to be any real solution.
    I've seen claims that there are a few WNICs that may work differently, but
    don't have any specific info. to offer on that.
    --

    <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > All:
    >
    > Could someone describe for me (or perhaps point to an MS web page) that
    > describes the protocol/process used by an XP Pro client to authenticate
    > in a domain environment at a) the machine level (when the machine logs
    > into the domain via its trust account), b) the user level, c) the
    > network level, when it connects to a secured wireless network.
    >
    > My question revolves what I perceive as a catch-22 in the way XP Pro
    > clients behave. An XP Pro client will not automatically select a
    > wireless network; the user must do so. However, for a user to log in,
    > he must authenticate to the domain, implying a secure wireless
    > connection has already been selected and connection established, which
    > supposedly can't be done before login!
    >
    > See the dilemma? Can't connect wirelessly until user picks a
    > connection; user can't pick a connection until he logs in; can't log in
    > until he connects....
    >
    > There's a link missing in that chain, so if someone can explain how we
    > overcome this merry-go-round, I'd appreciate it. I've tried looking on
    > MS and other sites for an explanation and have come up dry. I have to
    > think I'm just not understanding some aspect of the protocol correctly.
    >
    > Thanks in advance,
    > dew
    >
    > ps Please reply to group; email here is long since dead.
    >
     
    GTS, Jan 3, 2006
    #2
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  3. rahan Guest

    Windows XP pro SP2 seems to have a (strange) behaviour to workaround
    this problem:
    When a wireless device is detected, then the logon domain process does
    not
    really happen. In place it display the logon window but let you login
    even if there
    is no connection to the domain controller.

    I observed this behaviour in our laptop parc:
    - laptop without wifi cannot login if not connected with the PDC
    - laptop with builtin wifi or on which wifi have been installed later
    are able to log you in even there is not (wired or wireless) connection
    to the PDC

    Our PDC is running NT4, laptop are running XP pro SP2

    Hope it helps
     
    rahan, Jan 4, 2006
    #3
  4. GTS Guest

    That's not so strange. What you are describing is a local logon under the
    domain user based on cached credentials. This doesn't establish a
    connection to the server. Login scripts won't run this way, roaming
    profiles won't load, etc. It's useful up to a point (e.g. allows using your
    domain member laptop at home with the same basic user profile), but doesn't
    address the real issue.
    --

    "rahan" <> wrote in message
    news:...
    > Windows XP pro SP2 seems to have a (strange) behaviour to workaround
    > this problem:
    > When a wireless device is detected, then the logon domain process does
    > not
    > really happen. In place it display the logon window but let you login
    > even if there
    > is no connection to the domain controller.
    >
    > I observed this behaviour in our laptop parc:
    > - laptop without wifi cannot login if not connected with the PDC
    > - laptop with builtin wifi or on which wifi have been installed later
    > are able to log you in even there is not (wired or wireless) connection
    > to the PDC
    >
    > Our PDC is running NT4, laptop are running XP pro SP2
    >
    > Hope it helps
    >
     
    GTS, Jan 4, 2006
    #4
  5. Guest

    Thanks, Rahan.

    I believe, however, that what you're actually describing is a login to
    the domain via cached credentials; that is, someone who has logged in
    before is logged onto the machine by virtue of the previous
    authenticated login. I'd be interested to see if you actually get a
    login from someone who is a member of the relevant domain, but has
    *never* logged into that laptop. Consequently, I'm not quite sure what
    your seeing matches the scenario I've described.

    Ultimately, I want the option to configure Windows to use a specific
    wireless connection at boot time, and authenticate to it accordingly. I
    may be dense, but that seems brain-dead simple to me. However, the way
    it seems to work - apparently by design - is 180 degrees away from
    that. It doesn't seem like it can work AT ALL as I observe it, at least
    not in a domain environment.

    -David


    rahan wrote:
    > Windows XP pro SP2 seems to have a (strange) behaviour to workaround
    > this problem:
    > When a wireless device is detected, then the logon domain process does
    > not
    > really happen. In place it display the logon window but let you login
    > even if there
    > is no connection to the domain controller.
    >
    > I observed this behaviour in our laptop parc:
    > - laptop without wifi cannot login if not connected with the PDC
    > - laptop with builtin wifi or on which wifi have been installed later
    > are able to log you in even there is not (wired or wireless) connection
    > to the PDC
    >
    > Our PDC is running NT4, laptop are running XP pro SP2
    >
    > Hope it helps
     
    , Jan 4, 2006
    #5
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