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  • CWNP

“Will Controllers Go Away?” and Other Industry Questions

I’d like to pose a question and then some more questions. Many of you started reading the CWNP blog back when the Devinator started writing it a few years back. He and I are still good friends, and I often look back on his decision to jump into the vendor-specific game from a critical vendor-neutral perspective. By “critical” I don’t mean that I am criticizing him for making that decision, but rather I’m talking about using critical reasoning to deconstruct the merits of his choice to go to Aerohive (making the assumption that he could have jockeyed for a position at any vendor for any predominant reason). Like many of you, I have a vested interest in the momentum of the Wi-Fi industry as a whole, the changes in technology, vendor positioning and market share, and the like. Thus, since I know he’s ok with it, I’d like to hear your opinions about his decision to put his flag in the sand with a controller-less architecture.

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  • CWNP

VeriWave’s WaveDeploy: An Introduction and Review

If you’ve been keeping up with recent industry news, vendor tests, and analyst articles, you may have noticed the seemingly ubiquitous presence of VeriWave. If you don’t know them already, VeriWave specializes in WLAN product testing and network validation tools/suites, and after looking through their product line, it won’t surprise you that many vendors depend on them for WLAN product assurance and competitive testing. Take a look around at some of their recent mentions.

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  • CWNP

Distributing 802.1X Settings to your Clients

Businesses and organizations should use Enterprise-level Wi-Fi Protected Access—preferably WPA2 with AES encryption—to secure their WLAN, which requires the use of a RADIUS server for the 802.1X authentication. However, you'll probably find that configuring the end-users is a road-block, or at least a big speed bump, to your 802.1X implementation. As the owner of a hosted 802.1X service, I see this problem daily. In Windows you can't simply just connect to these types of networks—you must preconfigure the 802.1X settings. You'll likely see an increase in trouble calls and visits to the help desk.

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  • CWNP

Factors to Consider while Evaluating a Wireless Security Solution

Wi-Fi proliferation and increased awareness about associated security risks is prompting many organizations to install Wi-Fi security monitoring systems, for which the industry term is WIPS (wireless intrusion prevention system). Protection from rogue APs, WiPhishing, corporate client connections to neighborhood APs, mis-configurations of authorized Wi-Fi, wireless DoS attacks, spoofing, and zero-day attacks are some of the commonly cited reasons to install WIPS. There are many WIPS solutions available in the market today, including those offered by WLAN infrastructure vendors and those offered by dedicated security vendors. However, WIPS being a relatively new security technology, organizations often face challenges in evaluating these solutions to determine what best suits them. More so, many end-users may not have the level of dedicated wireless skills and resources required to thoroughly test a WIPS. In this light, this article lays out some high level considerations that are important while evaluating a WIPS solution.

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  • CWNP

Meraki's New Features: A 1-2-3 Punch

Vendors contact me on a regular basis to let me know about their new products, features, and developments. I like that. Generally, the hope is that I’ll write about them, but a fair amount of the time, there’s not much worth writing about. I got an email the other day from Meraki and for no apparent reason, I suspected they were writing to tell me about some paltry feature upgrade that neither I, nor CWNP’s constituents would care about. That has nothing to do with Meraki, and was more about my mood at the time (I’m seeing a counselor about that). :) I’ve had nothing but great experiences interacting with Merakians thus far so I had no reason to expect the worse. So, in addition to being anecdotal and transparent, I share that information only to reinforce the fact that I was pleasantly surprised by the 1-2-3 punch of news Meraki released this morning.

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  • CWNP

Free Wi-Fi Stumbling and Surveying Tools

You’ve most likely heard of NetStumbler, but there are many more free Wi-Fi stumblers out there. These can come in handy whether you want to check the channels, find rogue APs, or do full RF site surveys. Here’s a review on several of these stumbling and surveying utilities.

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  • CWNP

FCC: Laying Down the UNII Law

The word on the street is that the FCC is cracking down on wireless usage in parts of the UNII 2e band. The FCC released a memorandum last week to encourage new wireless deployment practices and vendor marketing emphasis for avoiding interference with certain kinds of radar. I’ll explain the purpose and message of the memorandum here, but if you’d like to read for yourself, here’s a link: http://www.wi-fi.org/files/FCC_Memorandum_on_UNII_Device_Operation_2010_07_27-M.pdf

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  • CWNP

AirTightening the Bolts on Insecure Networks

WIPS vendors tell us all about the problems of ad hoc networks and the dangers of hackers, but perhaps they should remind us of the dangers of ad hoc networks and Russian spies. You may have read in recent news that the FBI detained several individuals who were suspected of being Russian spies. During the investigation, some telling evidence was collected by means of Wi-Fi sniffing. As it turns out, one of the suspects would set up shop with a laptop in a coffee shop. Another suspect would drive by in a van, transferring files with the person in the coffee shop via an ad hoc network with “amateurish” security. The FBI caught onto this and was able to sniff the traffic and recover the data. If only the Russian spies had heard marketing messages from WIPS vendors explaining that ad hoc networks are bad. Apparently they’re bad for everyone, spies included.

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  • CWNP

First Look: Aruba Integrated Spectrum Analysis

After an initial and timely onslaught of press about integrated spectrum analysis, it looks like Aruba now has something to show. http://arubanetworks.com/products/spectrum-analyzer.php

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  • CWNP

End of June Wi-Fi Notables

The Wi-Fi market is healthy and growing. To keep you apprised of the comings and goings you may have missed, here are five notable Wi-Fi happenings from the month of June. You might call this a newsletter blog.

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