Mixed mode and encryption/authentication

Discussion in 'Cisco/Linksys Wireless Routers' started by gk176, Feb 22, 2006.

  1. gk176

    gk176 Network Guru Member

    I have been able to find information on the effect on speed of mixed mode operation with both 802.11b and 802.11g devices, but have not seen anything on how authentication and encryption works in a mixed mode environment. Let's say there's a 802.11g client capable of WPA or WPA2, and an 802.11b client capable of WEP (without TKIP or some of the other interim enhancements to overcome WEP weaknesses).

    Does the router (WRT54G v3.1) communicate with each client with the higher authentication and encryption for which it is capable and configured, or does addition of an 802.11b client drag all of the clients on the wireless network down to the lowest common denominator - plain old WEP.

    Obviously the answer is to replace the 802.11b client, but the scenario I'm thinking of is college roommates where replacement can be encouraged but not required. I'd like to be able to tell them whether the user with the (b) device is only weakening the security for their own client, or is weakening the security for everyone using the router.

  2. howardp6

    howardp6 Network Guru Member

    Encryption is all or only one process, when it comes to WEP or WPA. You can have WPA/WPA2. On routers and access points you can have WEP or WPA, but not both. To have both you need two routers or access points, both one set to WEP and the other to WPA. You should have thme both at different SSIDs and channels far enough apart not to interfere.
  3. gk176

    gk176 Network Guru Member

    Thank you.
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