do i have an open key or a shared key?

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
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Hello

How do i know if my wireless authentication is shared key or open key?

i looked up the settings on my access point and it just says that i am using WEP, but not if my authntication is open key or shared key.
I have got his option on my laptop though.

what is the default WEP key. i looked at the WEP key that came with my access point, and it looks random to me.

 

nweaver

Diamond Member
Jan 21, 2001
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if not specified, it's usually OPEN

the WEP key SHOULD be random....

You should not use WEP for security, other then as a minor nuisance to war drivers (or a challenge, perhaps). Instead, use WPA or WPA2
 

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
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what do you mean WEP should be random?

how will my laptop know what the WEP key is, if the WEP key within my router is random?
 

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
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on my laptop, with open and shared i get the option of WEP and disabled for encryption. so if i go for shared WEP, does that mean i can disable the encryption?

does shared key encryption force wep encryption?

i guess with open system, there is no challenge, authentication, but pure encryption on both sides and clients access the system
i did some searching on the net, and came across this site
http://www.eui.eu/CS/DocumentDetail.jsp?query=&ID=162

it says "With open key authentication, even if a client can complete authentication and associate with an AP", i dont understand how does a client authenticate on an open system, i thought there was no authentication in the open mode, or is that use of WEP with 802.1x, that is the enterprise mode, correct?

i am getting confused here.

can you guys tell me how to turn off the broadcast of the SSID from my access point?
i guess i would have to make corresponding changes in my client(laptop)

if you visit a public hotspot, how do you know if it supports WEP or WPA?

i guess if i change my WEP 64 bit to 128 bit, i have to double the length of my WEP key, correct?
 

JackMDS

Elite Member
Super Moderator
Oct 25, 1999
29,414
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Disable WEP means No WEP encryption.

If have No other choice (Like WPA) you have to use WEP.

You need to set first your Wireless Router and generate there a Key, then you set the laptop with the same key.

Do not turn off your SSID, it might destabilize the connection, and it is No adding security.

http://www.ezlan.net/faq#ssid

When you are in a public place, you can ask Da Man in charge what the security configuration is.

If your Wireless Utility shows Secure Wireless, you need to get the password from the owner of the HotSpot.

802.11x authentication is used in the business world with special servers leave it alone.

From the weakest to the strongest, Wireless security capacity is.
No Security
MAC______(Band Aid if nothing else is available).
WEP64____(Easy, to "Brake" by knowledgeable people).
WEP128___(Hard, but possible to Brake).
WPA-PSK__(Very Hard to Brake ).
WPA-AES__(Not functionally Breakable)
WPA2____ (Not functionally Breakable).

The documentation of your Wireless devices (Wireless Router, and Wireless Computer's Card) should state the type of security that is available with your Wireless hardware.

All devices MUST be set to the same security level using the same pass phrase.

Therefore the security must be set according what ever is the best possible of one of the Wireless devices.

I.e. even if most of your system might be capable to be configured to the max. with WPA2, but one device is only capable to be configured to max . of WEP, to whole system must be configured to WEP.

If you need more good security and one device (like a Wireless card that can do WEP only) is holding better security for the whole Network, replace the device with a better one.

Wireless Security - http://www.ezlan.net/Wireless_Security.html

WEP, WPA, and the Future - http://www.ezlan.net/wpa_wep.html
 

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
984
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thanks for the reply

how do i turn of the SSID in my access point?

how does an open system wor, my understanding is that it uses WEP encryption, is there no challenge, authntication on the access point side?

if i change my WEP 64 bit to 128 bit, i have to double the length of my WEP key, correct?

i noticed in my home vicitinty there is a broadcast with WPA turned on, whenever there is WPA transmission, is that fact transmitted over the air and people know that the security mechanism associated with that access point is WPA?
 

spidey07

No Lifer
Aug 4, 2000
65,469
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You are making this 100 times more complicated than it need's to be.

Just use WPA2-PSK. you're done at that point, just use a long random passphrase/key. Don't worry about disabling SSID broadcast, it's recommended that you DO broadcast the SSID.

If you have to use WEP (and only because some device doens't support WPA) then use open authentication with 128-bit wep.

For all encryption the settings on the AP and client must match exactly.
 

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
984
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thanks for the reply,

i wanted to understand what it all meant, hence my questions.

this is for my work
 

spidey07

No Lifer
Aug 4, 2000
65,469
5
76
Open and Shared authentication are for associating to an access point and have nothing to do with encryption. That's what is throwing you off.

Essentially it is a bit that is set in beacon and probe-requests. Shared is almost never used, almost always open.
 

rookie1010

Senior member
Mar 7, 2004
984
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thanks for the reply,

so the challenge-response authentication mechanism is used in both open and shared authentication
 

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