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Wireless Bridge

I have (2) linksys WET200 wireless bridges and am looking to connect two LAN segments together.  It seems from the documentation that I can either:

A) connect (2) WET200 bridges together using Ad Hoc mode (WEP)
B) connect (1) WET200 to an Access Point using Infrastructure mode (WPA or WPA2)

What is going on?

As option B is some sort of hybrid bridge where the bridge acts as a Client station and 'clones' its ethernet ports over it.  Will it have any limitations that are not readily apparent?

Does WPA, WPA2 not support bridging or am I not looking in the right place?

How do the expensive wireless bridge products (Proxim) handle security?
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ast2550
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ast2550
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1 Solution
 
Darr247Commented:
I'm pretty sure the reason they can't connect in infrastructure mode without being hooked to another device like a router is because the WET200 does not have a built in DHCP server... i.e. the other device they hook to needs to give them their IPs.
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ast2550Author Commented:
But, with WEP (Ad Hoc) you don't need a DHCP server?
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Darr247Commented:
The security mode (WEP) doesn't really matter, but no - you don't need DHCP for ANY kind of network... networks were around for many years before DHCP was invented (an extension of BOOTP, if I recall correctly).

If an address is not assigned either static or by DHCP, wireless devices typically fall back to a 169.254.xxx.xxx address.


Still, it appears the part you're getting hung up on is WPA and WEP...  I should've answered this earlier question explicitly when you first asked it:
> Does WPA, WPA2 not support bridging or am I not looking in the right place?

Bridging does not depend on the security mode. (pretend I typed that all in caps! :-)


Ad Hoc connections don't support WPA/WPA2. They're not meant to be long term.
i.e. Ad Hoc connections can use NO security, or WEP (open or shared); but generally not WPA (TKIP), WPA2 (PSK, TKIP and/or AES), nor 802.1x with a RADIUS server.

Ad hoc means, literally, ''for this'' - i.e. made up on the spot.
I think ad lib (as desired) fits it better, but I didn't get to name it. ;-)
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ast2550Author Commented:
I was commenting on your suggestion in your first response...trying to point out the logic flaw.  If DHCP was the reason it wasn't working then how can I get it to work with Ad Hoc.  Then, you contradicted it in your next response "you don't need DHCP".  But, I'm tired of that argument...it isn't my question.

Ok, so my understanding of a bridge, in general, is that you have a bridge at either end and they communicate with each other to connect two network segments.  So, why do the wireless MFGs not make wireless bridges that talk to each other and use WPA.  Similarly, I had a couple 3com wireless access points that had WEP & WPA but when you wanted WDS (sort of bridging) you could not use WPA.  You could choose WEP or nothing...same kind of thing.

Now with this linksys 'Bridge' or not quite a bridge by my definition, I can get WPA for security if I use an Access Point to connect to their Wireless Bridge, as described above, the bridge acts as a client to the access point and clones the data from the other side.

So, I don't think you've answered my questions of:
1) why
2) any problems of doing this (Access Point + Bridge)
3) how the big boys do it.
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mavaksCommented:
I tried to do the same setup with 2 WET200s.  After hours of frustration, we called Linksys, and their answer was that only WEP will be available for a WET200 to WET200 bridge.  Our solution was to install a WAP200 in access point mode, and use one WET200 to bridge to the WAP200, which does support WPA and WPA2.

If you go this route, be sure to update the WPA200 to the latest firmware, 1.0.22, which fixes a problem with WPA-Personal encryption.
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ast2550Author Commented:
mavaks, thanks for your advice...it is the same info I've gotten from Linksys and 3Com, but my basic question was why?
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