SSID and MAC questions

  daisy2bell 13:58 29 Nov 2005

I have enabled WEP. Do I "allow broadcast of name (SSID), if I don't can I still access the other computers?

I have also enabled MAC ( I looked up the MAC numbers of the 2nd PC and Laptop) and entered these into the modem/router which is on the main PC.I would imagine that the main PC's MAC number is automaticaly set?

So using WEP and MAC, I am assuming that this makes my set up almost foolproof, am I correct.


  keewaa 21:51 29 Nov 2005

WEP is not very secure, WPA is secure. MAC addresses can be spoofed. It will be secure against accidental infiltration, but not against a detemined hacker.

  daisy2bell 10:07 30 Nov 2005

Thanks. Is WPA easy to set up?

  keewaa 11:23 30 Nov 2005

Make sure you computer have XP fully up to date as there are updates relevant to WPA. (I think WPA only works with XP)

Make sure your router firmware is the latest and the drivers for you other wireless components on the PCs

Log into router Wireless security section
Usually choose WPA-PSK and enter / set up a key

This page shows you an example of configuring each wireless computer (shows various security options WEP WPA SSID broadcast or not etc.)
click here

  daisy2bell 14:05 30 Nov 2005

Thanks, I'll check that out

  Chegs ®™ 14:35 30 Nov 2005

No amount of security will deter a determined hacker.WEP/WPA can be hacked via software tools freely available online.The chances of your setup being hacked are very remote,a hacker will see the WEP/WPA encryption and simply move on to the hundreds of unprotected LAN's around.WEP/WPA is sufficient protection to stop "drive-by" bandwidth theives.

  BigMoFoT 15:14 30 Nov 2005

with what has been said here for the most part. WEP is not as secure as WPA but the truth of the matter is that they both can be hacked (I'm not too sure about WPA tho!) IF someone was to hack your network they would need get close enough to do it - signals between brick walls are going to be very week and I'm sure you would notice someone parked on your drive way using a laptop!!! MAC addresses can be spoofed but again that person would have to get closer for long enough to actually do some damage. No previous posts have really eased your conscience I don't think as to WiFi security. What I always do is;

Hide the SSID - essentially hide your network.,
MAC Filtering,
WPA with a very strong passphrase;
Ensure you change standard router IP ranges and passwords.

  Chegs ®™ 17:07 30 Nov 2005

click here

This is a webcast(that I haven't listened to)describing howto ethically hack WPA security.I have somewhere in my IE favourites,the URL's of several sites offering d/l's of assorted WEP/WPA hacking tools in the form of "live" CD's.I have tried them on my own WiFi LAN,and although I'm nowhere near an expert in networking or linux(these live CD's tend to be based on linux distro's)they can crack the 128 bit keys I used if given enough time.The other point you mention over range,isn't strictly true.I live upto 100M from the road,but my wireless signals can be received from inside the car.A neighbour has also got a wireless router,I can collect a usable signal off his equipment at 200M plus.Initially he wasn't using any form of encryption,even the passwords on his router were still set to default.Presumably,he spotted my wireless network or probing,and opted to change to encryption,he's also changed the default username/passwords on his router(I know as I tried to access the gear to see if I could pin down exactly whose it was and alert them)They have also moved the equipment to the rear of the house,as shortly after my attempts to access it,the signal level here dropped to less than 2% ;-)

  daisy2bell 08:49 01 Dec 2005

Thanks guys. Just one final question regarding WPA. I can do this both on the main PC as it is connected to the router/moden by cable software installed, and the laptop which is wifi with a wireless USB adapter. But what about the 2nd PC which is connected to the router/modem by cable ( I didn't install software on the 2nd PC so cannot configure WPA on this one). Will I still be able to network etc.


  keewaa 12:55 01 Dec 2005

Wi FI security is only for wirelss connections ... the PC connected by cable doesn't need WiFi security as it isn't using WiFi.

  daisy2bell 18:26 01 Dec 2005

So in otherwords the 2 PC's connected directly to the router / modem ( one of them has the router software installed)don't need any security at all apart from the firewall, but the laptop which has the "wireless USB adapter" does need it. So WPA would only be set up on the laptop?
Sorry to be so thick.

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