802.11 Wireless Networks The Definitive Guide

book cover
802.11® Wireless Networks The Definitive Guide
By Matthew Gast
Publisher: O'Reilly
Pub Date: April 2005
ISBN: 0-596-10052-3
Pages: 656

Table of Contents  | Index

As we all know by now, wireless networks offer many advantages over fixed (or wired) networks. Foremost on that list is mobility, since going wireless frees you from the tether of an Ethernet cable at a desk. But that's just the tip of the cable-free iceberg. Wireless networks are also more flexible, faster and easier for you to use, and more affordable to deploy and maintain.

The de facto standard for wireless networking is the 802.11 protocol, which includes Wi-Fi (the wireless standard known as 802.11b) and its faster cousin, 802.11g. With easy-to-install 802.11 network hardware available everywhere you turn, the choice seems simple, and many people dive into wireless computing with less thought and planning than they'd give to a wired network. But it's wise to be familiar with both the capabilities and risks associated with the 802.11 protocols. And 802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition is the perfect place to start.

This updated edition covers everything you'll ever need to know about wireless technology. Designed with the system administrator or serious home user in mind, it's a no-nonsense guide for setting up 802.11 on Windows and Linux. Among the wide range of topics covered are discussions on:

  • deployment considerations

  • network monitoring and performance tuning

  • wireless security issues

  • how to use and select access points

  • network monitoring essentials

  • wireless card configuration

  • security issues unique to wireless networks

With wireless technology, the advantages to its users are indeed plentiful. Companies no longer have to deal with the hassle and expense of wiring buildings, and households with several computers can avoid fights over who's online. And now, with 802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition, you can integrate wireless technology into your current infrastructure with the utmost confidence.

book cover
802.11® Wireless Networks The Definitive Guide
By Matthew Gast
Publisher: O'Reilly
Pub Date: April 2005
ISBN: 0-596-10052-3
Pages: 656

Table of Contents  | Index

      Prometheus Untethered: The Possibilities of Wireless LANs
      Overture for Book in Black and White, Opus 2
      Conventions Used in This Book
      How to Contact Us
      Safari Enabled
        Chapter 1.  Introduction to Wireless Networking
      Why Wireless?
      What Makes Wireless Networks Different
      A Network by Any Other Name...
        Chapter 2.  Overview of 802.11 Networks
      IEEE 802 Network Technology Family Tree
      802.11 Nomenclature and Design
      802.11 Network Operations
      Mobility Support
        Chapter 3.  802.11 MAC Fundamentals
      Challenges for the MAC
      MAC Access Modes and Timing
      Contention-Based Access Using the DCF
      Fragmentation and Reassembly
      Frame Format
      Encapsulation of Higher-Layer Protocols Within 802.11
      Contention-Based Data Service
      Frame Processing and Bridging
        Chapter 4.  802.11 Framing in Detail
      Data Frames
      Control Frames
      Management Frames
      Frame Transmission and Association and Authentication States
        Chapter 5.  Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP)
      Cryptographic Background to WEP
      WEP Cryptographic Operations
      Problems with WEP
      Dynamic WEP
        Chapter 6.  User Authentication with 802.1X
      The Extensible Authentication Protocol
      EAP Methods
      802.1X: Network Port Authentication
      802.1X on Wireless LANs
        Chapter 7.  802.11i: Robust Security Networks, TKIP, and CCMP
      The Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP)
      Counter Mode with CBC-MAC (CCMP)
      Robust Security Network (RSN) Operations
        Chapter 8.  Management Operations
      Management Architecture
      Power Conservation
      Timer Synchronization
      Spectrum Management
        Chapter 9.  Contention-Free Service with the PCF
      Contention-Free Access Using the PCF
      Detailed PCF Framing
      Power Management and the PCF
        Chapter 10.  Physical Layer Overview
      Physical-Layer Architecture
      The Radio Link
      RF Propagation with 802.11
      RF Engineering for 802.11
        Chapter 11.  The Frequency-Hopping (FH) PHY
      Frequency-Hopping Transmission
      Gaussian Frequency Shift Keying (GFSK)
      FH PHY Convergence Procedure (PLCP)
      Frequency-Hopping PMD Sublayer
      Characteristics of the FH PHY
        Chapter 12.  The Direct Sequence PHYs: DSSS and HR/DSSS (802.11b)
      Direct Sequence Transmission
      Differential Phase Shift Keying (DPSK)
      The "Original" Direct Sequence PHY
      Complementary Code Keying
      High Rate Direct Sequence PHY
        Chapter 13.  802.11a and 802.11j: 5-GHz OFDM PHY
      Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM)
      OFDM as Applied by 802.11a
      OFDM PMD
      Characteristics of the OFDM PHY
        Chapter 14.  802.11g: The Extended-Rate PHY (ERP)
      802.11g Components
      ERP Physical Layer Convergence (PLCP)
      ERP Physical Medium Dependent (PMD) Layer
        Chapter 15.  A Peek Ahead at 802.11n: MIMO-OFDM
      Common Features
      Comparison and Conclusions
        Chapter 16.  802.11 Hardware
      General Structure of an 802.11 Interface
      Implementation-Specific Behavior
      Reading the Specification Sheet
        Chapter 17.  Using 802.11 on Windows
      Windows XP
      Windows 2000
      Windows Computer Authentication
        Chapter 18.  802.11 on the Macintosh
      The AirPort Extreme Card
      802.1X on the AirPort
        Chapter 19.  Using 802.11 on Linux
      PCMCIA Support on Linux
      Linux Wireless Extensions and Tools
      Agere (Lucent) Orinoco
      Atheros-Based cards and MADwifi
      802.1X on Linux with xsupplicant
        Chapter 20.  Using 802.11 Access Points
      General Functions of an Access Point
      Power over Ethernet (PoE)
      Selecting Access Points
      Cisco 1200 Access Point
      Apple AirPort
        Chapter 21.  Logical Wireless Network Architecture
      Evaluating a Logical Architecture
      Topology Examples
      Choosing Your Logical Architecture
        Chapter 22.  Security Architecture
      Security Definition and Analysis
      Authentication and Access Control
      Ensuring Secrecy Through Encryption
      Selecting Security Protocols
      Rogue Access Points
        Chapter 23.  Site Planning and Project Management
      Project Planning and Requirements
      Network Requirements
      Physical Layer Selection and Design
      Planning Access-Point Placement
      Using Antennas to Tailor Coverage
        Chapter 24.  802.11 Network Analysis
      Network Analyzers
      802.11 Network Analysis Checklist
      Other Tools
        Chapter 25.  802.11 Performance Tuning
      802.11 Performance Calculations
      Improving Performance
      Tunable 802.11 Parameters
        Chapter 26.  Conclusions and Predictions
      Standards Work
      Current Trends in Wireless Networking
      The End
      About the Author