what is RADIUS and TACACS+ in your own words.


What is RADIUS and TACACS+ in your own words? What are they used for? And Where? No wikipedia please.

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Kanti PrasadCommented:
Sorry Wolfe -- I was just trying to help and I did not know that there will be such objection.

 jazzIIIlove : Here is some info which I am writing with my own understanding and I hope you will find it useful.

 TACACS+ and RADIUS (RFC 2865 - Spec) are Security Protocols of Cisco to control access into networks.

RADIUS is an access server that uses AAA protocol. It secures remote access to networks and network services against unauthorized access. RADIUS has a client, a server and a protocol with a frame format that utilizes User Datagram Protocol (UDP)/IP. RADIUS uses UDP which is best effort transport.RADIUS encrypts only the password in the access-request packet, from the client to the server. The remainder of the packet is unencrypted, RADIUS does not multiprotocol protocols ((ARA,NetBIOS , NASI & •X.25 PAD ). RADIUS Request for Comments (RFCs) does not guarantee interoperability.RADIUS does not allow users control on routers. RADIUS combines authentication and authorization hence in router management it cannot decouple authentication, exec authorization, command authorization, exec accounting, and command accounting.

TACACS+ protocol has independent authentication, authorization, and accounting (AAA) architecture that is designed to support growing security markets, It uses TCP which is connection oriented transport.TACACS+ encrypts the entire body of the packet but leaves a standard TACACS+ header. TACACS+ offers multiprotocol support(ARA,NetBIOS , NASI & •X.25 PAD ). TACACS+ allows control on routers.TACACS+ decouples  authentication and authorization hence  in router management it can decouple authentication, exec authorization, command authorization, exec accounting, and command accounting.
jazzIIIloveAuthor Commented:

Thanks any fundamental difference between them?

Also are those protocols used by ISPs? Where is their place in OSI layer?

Best regards.
Kanti PrasadCommented:
Hi JazzIIIlove

Both are used in dial in environments to help clients to authenticate with ISP for an internet connection.

The flow is Network access server (the Radius\TACACS client) connects to the Radius or TACACS server within a Windows or Linux system and as it Establishes connections between devices and applications it needs to reside in the Session Layer.

Radius is cheap and is an open source ( sorry not a cisco one) with limited functionality and TACACS+ is a Cisco proprietary protocol and is expensive but has good control over security.

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