Setting up a WAP?
Setting up a WAP is fairly easy. You can just unpack it and keep it on the desk, atop a book shelf or near the network jack and plug it into a power source and network cable. This is all it takes to activate the hardware part of the WAP. That is not all, there is software configuration to be catered to and has to be carefully set up for effective functioning of the Wireless network.
Like I said earlier the software configuration of a WAP is a little tricky and has to be ideally performed while the computer is connected to the internet. First of all find out the IP address of the WAP and type it into the address bar of the internet explorer or the internet browser you are using. This can be done from any computer on the network.
The page which follows is the hardware setup page and you can set up the following options related to the WAP functions of the device. Though the options varies with different manufacturers, the broad details given in the page is listed below:
1> Enable/ Disable: This toggles the device’s availability for WAP duty.
2> SSID aka Service Set Identifier: This is used to detect the network. Most WAPs have their own defaults which is usually most secure connection. You can change it to your network configuration if you feel your network is more secure. Otherwise it is best to leave it default as it is the safest.
3> SSID broadcast: This enables/ disables the WAPs sharing of SSID settings. WAPs are set up in such a way that it regularly broadcasts the SSID so when a wireless device is within range it can detect the SSID and connects. If you want your network to be completely secure and not allow unauthorized persons to access the network it is best to disable this setting.
4> Channel: There are 11 channels of broadcast to choose from. You can choose one and should configure all computers on the network to use the same. If the connection is weak and unstable switch channel and it will work better. This is also a good way to keep away from other neighboring networks. Say if your office building has 10 networks you can switch channels so you will have a secure network without hindering anybody else’s network speed. This will minimize interference with other wireless networks. This is not for security but it is just a way to ensure seamless connection. Keeping up your security arrangements is mandatory if you are to ensure safety of your data and communications.
5> WEP: compulsory or optional: How to secure your network, by establishing a security protocol which will ask for a password from each user who tries to log on to the network.