# What hardware do I need to setup a wireless network in my home
1. Wireless Router - Given a choice between purchasing a wireless router (more commonly available) and an access point (does not incorporate a firewall or internet sharing), the router is recommended, since it has a usefulness that goes beyond just connecting your wireless devices. If possible, purchase a wireless router that has wired ports on it as well for added flexibility.
2. Wireless Network Card - When buying wireless network adaptors for your computers, consider which computers in your home or business you actually need to be wireless.
# 14:05 What are the basics for 802.11 wireless versions?
802.11b uses the 2.4GHz radio spectrum to transmit data at a maximum rate of 11Mbps. Actual data transfer rates tend to be around 4-6Mbps. Realistic range for 802.11b devices in an urban environment is between 70 and 150 feet.
802.11b's one major disadvantage is in the way it handles the channels it uses to connect devices within the 2.4GHz spectrum. The standard allows for a maximum of only three distinct channels, manually configured on the access point. Each access point will use one channel at a time to service all clients, sharing the bandwidth between them.
Problems arise with this when you have more than three wireless access-points within each other's range. When multiple access points are attempting to service clients using the same channels, considerable signal interference will occur. As wireless networks become more common, this issue will become a more pressing problem. 802.11B networks are also subject to some interference from common electronic devices such as cordless phones and microwaves, which may use the 2.4GHz spectrum.
802.11a uses the 5GHz radio spectrum, and is capable of transfer rates up to a maximum of 54Mbps, though some manufacturers have improved on this using proprietary modes. Range is about equal to that of 802.11b.
The major advantage of 802.11a is in how it handles signaling. Besides the fact that is uses the 5GHz spectrum, and is thus not subject to interference by the variety of common electronic devices which share the 2.4GHz range. It also has 8 distinct channels available, compared to the 3 that 802.11b can use. This makes configuring large wireless networks much easier.
Drawbacks to 802.11a are threefold; first it is not directly compatible with 802.11b devices so you would need to have separate access-points for each standard with a network switch in between in order to allow devices with the different standards to communicate. Two, availability is limited, compared to 802.11b devices at least. Three, 802.11a devices are intended for business use, and as such tend to be priced at a premium.
802.11g is sort of a hybrid of A and B, at least in terms of its feature set. It is capable of 54Mbps, but on the 2.4 GHz spectrum.
It is, at least in theory, completely compatible with 802.11b devices (using 802.11b\'s default 11Mbps speed, of course), but has better channel availability than that standard.
- 802.11n - 100Mbps
- 802.11i - Better security.
# 20:00 How do you keep your neighbors from picking up your wireless modem signal?
# How do I make sure I am not broadcasting my home's wifi signal?
SSID - Service Set Identifier - Definition: An SSID is the name of a wireless local area network. All wireless devices on a WLAN must employ the same SSID in order to communicate with each other.
# 24:10 What is the difference between WEP and WPA
# What exactly is WEP security on my router and what should the encryption be set to 64Bit, 128Bit, or 256Bit?
Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP), Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA)
In simple terms, WPA-PSK is extra-strong encryption where encryption keys are automatically changed (called rekeying) and authenticated between devices after a specified period of time, or after a specified number of packets has been transmitted. This is called the rekey interval. WPA-PSK is far superior to WEP and provides stronger protection for the home/SOHO user for two reasons. The process used to generate the encryption key is very rigorous and the rekeying (or key changing) is done very quickly. This stops even the most determined hacker from gathering enough data to break the encryption.
The WPA preshared key should be a random sequence of either keyboard characters (upper and lowercase letters, numbers, and punctuation) at least 20 characters long or hexadecimal digits (numbers 0-9 and letters A-F) at least 24 hexadecimal digits long. The more random your WPA preshared key, the safer it is to use.
# 30:21 How to secure a wireless network, is VPN a good option?
Here is a summary of the additional steps you can take, in addition to using WPA, to secure your wireless home network:
Never use the default SSID provided by the manufacturer. You can optionally turn off the broadcast of the SSID name, but this will not stop determined hackers from finding it.
Set up an access control list by Mac address of all devices you want to associate with the access point or wireless router.
Change the default password provided by the manufacturer on the access point or wireless router.
Place the access point or router in the center of your home and not near a window.
Turn off administrative access over wireless if possible.
# 35:45 With a hardware and software firewire on a wireless home network (with WPA, MAC filtering and SSID hiding), do i really need SP2?
# 38:02 What are the potential negative health effects from all the wireless networked products in the home?
Not known really.