Fun without wires

Archive for the ‘netgear’ tag

Netgear WGR614 Wireless Cable/DSL Router

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When I came over here, I brought my Netgear DG824M, because I figured that it’d be useful, at the very least as a WAP, hooked off whatever I got sorted out with here, if not as my main DSL modem for my connection here. Instead, it turns out that I got cable, and it didn’t work as a WAP for that, because I couldn’t get it to not act as a DHCP server, and have the cable modem do that part of things, and it didn’t like to play otherwise. So – long story short, I bought a new modem!

Netgear WGR614
Having had a good experience with Netgear products so far, I stuck with them for my new modem, and hunted down a WGR614, which I bought from EBuyer.com. Once I get my rebate, it will have been a $35 router – not bad for something that would probably cost $200 in Australia 🙂

Since I previously had difficulty getting WEP to work with my XP machine, and had been running with it turned off (only using MAC-based restrictions), I figured it would be worth a shot to see if I could get it going using this modem. For some reason, it works! I still don’t know why, but when I turned WEP on, entered the generated key on my PC, laptop and iPAQ, everything Just Worked™.

I thought I was doing really well, had my wireless connection to the ‘net via PC, laptop and iPAQ, when I noticed that I was having problems with my PC – every 5 minutes or so, I would lose my connection to the WAP, then it would reconnect. This wouldn’t have been the end of the world (although it was annoying), but half the time my PC would pick up the connection to the other, un-secured network that’s around here, and connect to that instead. Then there was also the obvious problem of if I was doing a download or upload or gaming or something, a connection that consistently drops out every 5 minutes isn’t much use.

I checked Netgear’s support site for the modem, and downloaded the firmware update for it, which I hoped would fix the problem. I applied the update (no need to re-enter any configuration on the modem BTW, it retained all settings), but the problem persisted.

Just in case, I did a Windows Update to see if it would pick up anything. What do you know, there was an update there for Netgear, under the ‘Driver Updates’ section (not listed in ‘Critical Updates and Service Packs’). I installed it, and hey presto, my connection is clean as now. Haven’t had it drop out now in over 12 hours (which is only how long it’s been installed, so it’s never dropped off since installation).

This makes me happy – it means that now I can actually run WEP, which makes me feel better about having wireless, especially knowing there’s another network within range. I have a solid connection, which my iPAQ, PC and laptop can all share, which is relatively secure, and pretty darned fast. I haven’t bothered optimising the position of my WAP, because it has perfect range into my bedroom and onto my balcony, so there’s no need, and hopefully having it under my desk will reduce the overflow into the street and around the place.

Yay Netgear, yay wireless!

Written by Beau Lebens

July 4th, 2004 at 4:00 pm

Configuring a Wireless Network under Windows XP

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So I got my new computer (well, most of the pieces anyway, the keyboard’s coming next week hopefully), and I wanted to get wireles set up and running straight away so that I could get on the ‘net with it and download any patches etc that I needed. I get everything connected, then get my box to pick up my AP and then what happens? Nothing. Absolutely, positively, not a damn thing. For some reason, I could not get my desktop box to connect properly to my AP. It would say it was connected, but if I logged into the admin interface on it (using my lappy luckily), it wouldn’t say it was connected.

To cut a potentially long story short, I tried playing with some of the settings in Windows’ control panel, and it turns out that XP and the Netgear control utility don’t play so well together. When I told XP to control all wireless network settings, everything Just Worked(tm).

So now I am posting this, the first post from my new desktop, which is wirelessly connected to the ‘net (insecurely ATM!) into another room, where my modem sits on its own. When I get my keyboard, things will really be getting wireless, but this will do nicely until then!

Written by Beau Lebens

February 26th, 2004 at 4:00 pm

Desktop Wireless

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Netgear Wireless USB Adaptor (MA111)

In arranging my new desktop machine, I realised that things were going to be much easier for me if I could use wireless for my Internet connection. With the nearest telephone point being in another room, I’d have to run a cable all over the place otherwise, so this way I can leave the modem near the phone port and connect wirelessly without any hassles.

I gave the guys at Zoom ITG a call and arranged to have a Netgear Wireless USB Adaptor (MA111) included with the new box that they are building for me, so I should be all sorted once it gets here!

Written by Beau Lebens

February 17th, 2004 at 4:00 pm

Game On!

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Well kids, I got all my gear, got hooked up, and am wirelessly accessing the ‘net now with no worries at all!

My set-up consists of a Netgear WG511 54 Mbps Wireless PC Card and a Netgear DG824M Wireless ADSL Modem Gateway with 4-port 10/100 Mbps Switch, both of which have performed very well so far!

Netgear WG511 Wireless PC Card

Written by Beau Lebens

October 23rd, 2003 at 4:00 pm

Securing My Netgear Network

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On advice from someone who works in the DSD (pretty good advice on this sort of thing I’d say!), I went about securing my network as soon as I had it installed. This is basically all I had to do;

  1. Get connection going normally (unencrypted) between my WAP and my wireless-card-equipped laptop.
  2. Log into the admin interface on my WAP/switch
  3. Under the ‘Maintenance’ section, go to ‘Set Password’ and change the admin password for the administration interface (default is ‘password’ on Netgear devices)
  4. Under ‘Setup’ go to the ‘Wireless Settings’ and configure the WAP with the following details;
    1. Region: Australia (don’t know why this is required, but set it anyway)
    2. SSID: ansible (see previous post about origin of this name)
    3. Click to ‘Configure WEP’
      1. Leave ‘Authentication Type’ on ‘Automatic’
      2. Set ‘Encryption’ to 128-bit
      3. Enter a passphrase (remember it, will need for the PC Card later, and if anyone else is going to access this network)
      4. Click ‘Generate Keys’ and ‘Apply’ when done to save it all to the WAP, this will reboot WAP to initiate settings (losing wireless connection in the process, because I am no longer authorised to connect!)
  5. On the ‘Security’ tab of the config utility for my PC Card (on my laptop) adjust the following settings;
    1. ‘Enable Encryption’ (check this box to turn it on)
    2. Change ‘Key Length’ to ‘104/128 bit’
    3. Under ‘Create with Passphrase’ enter the same passphrase as was used on the WAP
    4. Click ‘Apply’ to save the settings, then go to the ‘Status’ tab and click ‘Re-Scan’ which connects back onto the WAP (using encryption this time)
  6. Now that we are connected using WEP, we are little more secure, but we also want to restrict connections to only certain MAC addresses (the hardware signature of the PC card).
  7. Get the MAC for you wireless card; I got mine by going back to the WAP admin, then selecting ‘Attached Devices’ under ‘Maintenance’.
  8. Again, under the ‘Wireless Settings’ under ‘Setup’ in the WAP admin interface, we now click the ‘Trusted PCs’ button under the ‘Access Point’ section (to specify trusted PCs)
  9. Enter the MAC for your wireless card in the space provided and click ‘Add’ – mine came up with the name of my machine next to the MAC, so I assume it is either encoded in the MAC, or it contacted my machine and asked (?)
  10. Click ‘Back’ when you’re done so we can turn on the security access based on MAC.
  11. Now select ‘Trusted PCs only’ under ‘Allow access by:’ so that only those machines on your trusted list can connect.
  12. Click ‘Apply’ to save these changes and reboot the WAP. You should reconnect successfully once it’s on again, since you are now on the trusted list. If you have another device, try connecting to confirm that it’s secure. I haven’t been able because I don’t have anything else, but I assume it just won’t be able to connect 🙂

More security info to come, including some experiments with things like AirSnort hopefully 🙂

Written by Beau Lebens

October 19th, 2003 at 4:00 pm