802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide


As we all know by now, wireless networks offer many advantages over fixed (or wired) networks. Foremost on that list is mobility, since going wireless frees you from the tether of an Ethernet cable at a desk. But that's just the tip of the cable-free iceberg. Wireless networks are also more flexible, faster and easier for you to use, and more affordable to deploy and maintain.The de facto standard for wireless networking is the 802.11 protocol, which includes Wi-Fi (the wireless standard known as 802.11b) and its...

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As we all know by now, wireless networks offer many advantages over fixed (or wired) networks. Foremost on that list is mobility, since going wireless frees you from the tether of an Ethernet cable at a desk. But that's just the tip of the cable-free iceberg. Wireless networks are also more flexible, faster and easier for you to use, and more affordable to deploy and maintain.The de facto standard for wireless networking is the 802.11 protocol, which includes Wi-Fi (the wireless standard known as 802.11b) and its faster cousin, 802.11g. With easy-to-install 802.11 network hardware available everywhere you turn, the choice seems simple, and many people dive into wireless computing with less thought and planning than they'd give to a wired network. But it's wise to be familiar with both the capabilities and risks associated with the 802.11 protocols. And 802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition is the perfect place to start.This updated edition covers everything you'll ever need to know about wireless technology. Designed with the system administrator or serious home user in mind, it's a no-nonsense guide for setting up 802.11 on Windows and Linux. Among the wide range of topics covered are discussions on:

  • deployment considerations
  • network monitoring and performance tuning
  • wireless security issues
  • how to use and select access points
  • network monitoring essentials
  • wireless card configuration
  • security issues unique to wireless networks
With wireless technology, the advantages to its users are indeed plentiful. Companies no longer have to deal with the hassle and expense of wiring buildings, and households with several computers can avoid fights over who's online. And now, with 802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide, 2nd Edition, you can integrate wireless technology into your current infrastructure with the utmost confidence.
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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble
Integrating wireless LAN technology is no easy task. Whether you need to get up-and-running or troubleshoot, Matthew Gast provides you with a full-spectrum view of this technology. Included is an ending summary of the standardization work pending in the 802.11 working group.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780596100520
  • Publisher: O'Reilly Media, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 4/28/2005
  • Edition description: Second Edition
  • Edition number: 2
  • Pages: 672
  • Sales rank: 501,239
  • Product dimensions: 9.08 (w) x 7.10 (h) x 1.18 (d)

Meet the Author

Matthew Gast works in the Office of the CTO at Trapeze Networks, where he leads the development of open wireless network standards and their application to the Trapeze architecture. He is a member of the IEEE 802.11 working group, and serves as chair of 802.11 Task Group M. As chair of the Wi-Fi Alliance's Wireless Network Management marketing task group, he is leading the investigation of certification requirements for power saving, performance optimization, and location and timing services. Matthew also chairs the Security Technical task group, which is extending Wi-Fi protected Access (WPA) certification to incorporate newly-developed security mechanisms so that it remains the strongest form of protection available for Wi-Fi networking. In 2007, Matthew was a founder of the OpenSEA Alliance, a group organized to support the development of open-source network security solutions. He currently serves on the engineering steering committee, the organization's board of directors, and as its corporate secretary. Matthew's most recent book, 802.11 Wireless Networks: The Definitive Guide (O'Reilly Media), now in its second edition, is the top selling reference work in the field and has been translated into six languages.

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Table of Contents

Prometheus Untethered: The Possibilities of Wireless LANs;
Overture for Book in Black and White, Opus 2;
Conventions Used in This Book;
Using Code Examples;
Safari® Books Online;
How to Contact Us;
Chapter 1: Introduction to Wireless Networking;
1.1 Why Wireless?;
1.2 What Makes Wireless Networks Different;
1.3 A Network by Any Other Name...;
Chapter 2: Overview of 802.11 Networks;
2.1 IEEE 802 Network Technology Family Tree;
2.2 802.11 Nomenclature and Design;
2.3 802.11 Network Operations;
2.4 Mobility Support;
Chapter 3: 802.11 MAC Fundamentals;
3.1 Challenges for the MAC;
3.2 MAC Access Modes and Timing;
3.3 Contention-Based Access Using the DCF;
3.4 Fragmentation and Reassembly;
3.5 Frame Format;
3.6 Encapsulation of Higher-Layer Protocols Within 802.11;
3.7 Contention-Based Data Service;
3.8 Frame Processing and Bridging;
Chapter 4: 802.11 Framing in Detail;
4.1 Data Frames;
4.2 Control Frames;
4.3 Management Frames;
4.4 Frame Transmission and Association and Authentication States;
Chapter 5: Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP);
5.1 Cryptographic Background to WEP;
5.2 WEP Cryptographic Operations;
5.3 Problems with WEP;
5.4 Dynamic WEP;
Chapter 6: User Authentication with 802.1X;
6.1 The Extensible Authentication Protocol;
6.2 EAP Methods;
6.3 802.1X: Network Port Authentication;
6.4 802.1X on Wireless LANs;
Chapter 7: 802.11i: Robust Security Networks, TKIP, and CCMP;
7.1 The Temporal Key Integrity Protocol (TKIP);
7.2 Counter Mode with CBC-MAC (CCMP);
7.3 Robust Security Network (RSN) Operations;
Chapter 8: Management Operations;
8.1 Management Architecture;
8.2 Scanning;
8.3 Authentication;
8.4 Preauthentication;
8.5 Association;
8.6 Power Conservation;
8.7 Timer Synchronization;
8.8 Spectrum Management;
Chapter 9: Contention-Free Service with the PCF;
9.1 Contention-Free Access Using the PCF;
9.2 Detailed PCF Framing;
9.3 Power Management and the PCF;
Chapter 10: Physical Layer Overview;
10.1 Physical-Layer Architecture;
10.2 The Radio Link;
10.3 RF Propagation with 802.11;
10.4 RF Engineering for 802.11;
Chapter 11: The Frequency-Hopping (FH) PHY;
11.1 Frequency-Hopping Transmission;
11.2 Gaussian Frequency Shift Keying (GFSK);
11.3 FH PHY Convergence Procedure (PLCP);
11.4 Frequency-Hopping PMD Sublayer;
11.5 Characteristics of the FH PHY;
Chapter 12: The Direct Sequence PHYs: DSSS and HR/DSSS (802.11b);
12.1 Direct Sequence Transmission;
12.2 Differential Phase Shift Keying (DPSK);
12.3 The “Original” Direct Sequence PHY;
12.4 Complementary Code Keying;
12.5 High Rate Direct Sequence PHY;
Chapter 13: 802.11a and 802.11j: 5-GHz OFDM PHY;
13.1 Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM);
13.2 OFDM as Applied by 802.11a;
13.4 OFDM PMD;
13.5 Characteristics of the OFDM PHY;
Chapter 14: 802.11g: The Extended-Rate PHY (ERP);
14.1 802.11g Components;
14.2 ERP Physical Layer Convergence (PLCP);
14.3 ERP Physical Medium Dependent (PMD) Layer;
Chapter 15: A Peek Ahead at 802.11n: MIMO-OFDM;
15.1 Common Features;
15.2 WWiSE;
15.3 TGnSync;
15.4 Comparison and Conclusions;
Chapter 16: 802.11 Hardware;
16.1 General Structure of an 802.11 Interface;
16.2 Implementation-Specific Behavior;
16.3 Reading the Specification Sheet;
Chapter 17: Using 802.11 on Windows;
17.1 Windows XP;
17.2 Windows 2000;
17.3 Windows Computer Authentication;
Chapter 18: 802.11 on the Macintosh;
18.1 The AirPort Extreme Card;
18.2 802.1X on the AirPort;
Chapter 19: Using 802.11 on Linux;
19.1 PCMCIA Support on Linux;
19.2 Linux Wireless Extensions and Tools;
19.3 Agere (Lucent) Orinoco;
19.4 Atheros-Based cards and MADwifi;
19.5 802.1X on Linux with xsupplicant;
Chapter 20: Using 802.11 Access Points;
20.1 General Functions of an Access Point;
20.2 Power over Ethernet (PoE);
20.3 Selecting Access Points;
20.4 Cisco 1200 Access Point;
20.5 Apple AirPort;
Chapter 21: Logical Wireless Network Architecture;
21.1 Evaluating a Logical Architecture;
21.2 Topology Examples;
21.3 Choosing Your Logical Architecture;
Chapter 22: Security Architecture;
22.1 Security Definition and Analysis;
22.2 Authentication and Access Control;
22.3 Ensuring Secrecy Through Encryption;
22.4 Selecting Security Protocols;
22.5 Rogue Access Points;
Chapter 23: Site Planning and Project Management;
23.1 Project Planning and Requirements;
23.2 Network Requirements;
23.3 Physical Layer Selection and Design;
23.4 Planning Access-Point Placement;
23.5 Using Antennas to Tailor Coverage;
Chapter 24: 802.11 Network Analysis;
24.1 Network Analyzers;
24.2 Ethereal;
24.3 802.11 Network Analysis Checklist;
24.4 Other Tools;
Chapter 25: 802.11 Performance Tuning;
25.1 802.11 Performance Calculations;
25.2 Improving Performance;
25.3 Tunable 802.11 Parameters;
Chapter 26: Conclusions and Predictions;
26.1 Standards Work;
26.2 Current Trends in Wireless Networking;
26.3 The End;

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted June 14, 2003

    Deceptive Title Page. Fails to cover 802.11(g), and very little on 802.11(a).

    This book deals with IEEE 802.11(b); the older and most likely soon obsolete standard. It mentions on the back outside jacket, 'In addition to the current 802.11(b) standard...also looks forward to the newest developments....802.11(a) and 802.11(g).'````````` Well, all it has on 802.11(g) is less than one page out of 443 pages, although this book was published in April 2002, and both 802.11(a) and (g) have now been approved, and product is available with 802.11(g).

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 5, 2005

    more difficult routing than for fixed Internet nodes

    [A review of the 2ND EDITION 2005] Some of you might bemoan the three years between this edition and the first, as a tremendous expansion of wireless networking has occurred in the interim. With the promise of far more to come. But as Gast explains, the rapid growth in usage and in the underlying standards made the writing of a comprehensive text difficult. Perhaps the biggest new topic in the book is the 802.11g. Unknown in 2002, its maximum bandwidth of 54 Mb/s has made it the most common wireless version in 2005's laptops. The book explains this and earlier standards, as well as the upcoming 802.11n, in the context of a common conceptual framework. Each improved upon its predecessors, but often carried forward common ideas. You probably have (or should have) some prior knowledge of TCP/IP and of its routing methods, for fixed Internet nodes. What you will find here is often rather more complex. The mobility of wireless nodes leads to a huge concomitant increase in the sophistication of the routing. Like a strange parallel universe of Internet protocols, if you will.

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