Put the wireless router or access point in listening mode?

Discussion in 'Networking Issues' started by techmanblues, May 22, 2005.

  1. techmanblues

    techmanblues Network Guru Member

    I have a customer who wants to install a wireless LAN at home but he is conscious about the bad health effect of having an always on wireless router or access point because he has children and a pregnant wife in the house. Is it possible to setup a wireless router or access point that when the wireless is not in used, ie data is being transmitted, the device is in "listen only mode" where it does not transmit anything. However, when a client is turned on and looks for a signal, this would "wake up" the wireless router/access point and it then begins to transmit. The client can find the wireless router/access point by the MAC address. I told the customer that this is impossible at this point because 802.11 spec says that in infrastructure mode, the wireless router/accesss point always transmits a beacon so that the clients can know what signal is there. Sure, one can disable the SSID broadcast, but the actual allegedly bad radio waves are still being tranmitted regardless whether it is being used to carry data or not. Is this true? How about ad-hoc mode?

    Come to think of it, this is like wake-on-LAN in the wired world where the PC will wake up from deep hibernation when an incomming "magic packet" arrives via the NIC from some computer in the LAN or from the Internet.
  2. gaganabato

    gaganabato Guest

    Re: Put the wireless router or access point in listening mod

    - i'll check on this notes... see what i can come up too....
  3. foq99

    foq99 Network Guru Member

    The default output of the WRT54G router is 28mW. You are hit with more radiation from TV and radio signals, your cell phone, even passive radiation from your TV when it's on. I wouldn't worry about the wireless networking gear doing anything nastier than what the rest of the modern world and the sun do naturally.

    Sveasoft's Alchemy has a WOL (Wake on LAN) option, but I have never tried it.
  4. techmanblues

    techmanblues Network Guru Member

    How does cellphones work anyway? Does it transmit when I am not talking using it? Obviously it is in listening mode for gprs signal, but even in this mode, does it still transmit to the radio towers pinging them once in a while? I have my cell on my body 12 hours a day. I should know more about these things. :bang:
  5. foq99

    foq99 Network Guru Member

    I'm not a signals expert, nor a cell phone expert, but here is my understanding of the way it works:

    Most of the time your cell phone is in "wireless standby" where it is waiting for a signal from the tower or for you to initiate a signal. This is around 1-10mW signal output. When it receives a signal from a tower directed at your cell phone, the wireless wakes up and says "here I am!" -- the delay here is why you sometimes here strange rings in the first second or two of your call sometimes when you're calling somebody's cell phone, basically the network sends your phone the sound of ringing when it starts trying, then restarts sending the ringing when the cell phone responds. When you are talking on the phone, it is sending ~50-100mW.

    Please don't flame me. I know I'm wrong, but this is a reasonable explanation of what happens. If anybody knows more, feel free to correct me NICELY. :)
  6. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

  7. techmanblues

    techmanblues Network Guru Member

    Ok, so my hip gets a continous dose of 1-10mW of radiation for 10 hours a day. Is that a bad thing I wonder? I wonder also if the type of EM waves emitting by the cellphone is different than wi-fi? It is well known that the higher the frequency, the more energy it packs a punch, but does it also depend on the type of energy? I see all these kids with cells phones talking for hours like kids always do and I am concerned that 20 years from now, we would have an epidemic of brain and hip tumors. :explode:
  8. jagboy

    jagboy Network Guru Member

    i tink that we might i am 15 and i use the comp for more than 4hr a day just doing html and that is not counting the time i spend on the forums
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