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• Microsoft Vista Home Networking Setup and Options
The most daunting part of upgrading to Windows Vista may be trying to figure out where in the layers of menus the networking and file-sharing options are hidden.

• Do It Yourself: Roll Your Own Network Cables
It may not be something you do everyday, but having the supplies and know-how to whip up a network cable on the spot can be very handy.

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Seemingly minor and easily overlooked settings can still have profound security implications. Here are some steps you can take to make sure your wired or wireless home router and by extension, your network is as secure as possible.

  Most Popular Reviews

• Microsoft Windows Home Server
If you have a home network, you'll welcome the easy file sharing, remote access and the image-based backup features of Windows Home Server.

• Iomega StorCenter Network Hard Drive
Iomega's fourth generation StorCenter Network Hard Drive brings many of the features found in higher-end storage devices down to an attractive price.

• MikroTik's The Dude
This free tool delivers many of the same capabilities that you'd find in pricey network monitoring tools. As long as you don't mind tinkering, The Dude is a decent network utility that should be worth the download.



Friday, 30 November 2001

UPDATE: A federal judge today gave bankrupt Excite@Home -- which powers cable modems for AT&T, Comcast, Cox and around 18 others for a total of 4.1 million users -- the okay to shut down as early as Saturday, December 1. Negotiations to keep it up continue. Get details at SiliconValley.internet.com.

Texas Instruments has introduced a new reference design called the TNETC408 Residential Gateway Solution that pairs a DOCSIS 1.1 cable modem with integrated 802.11b for wireless broadband sharing in the home.

Palm is offering Xircom Wireless module to connect handhelds with 802.11b networks. The module comes with a Windows compatible e-mail client, the DPWeb browser, and a trial version of a VPN. The price is $290 alone, or get it as part of a bundle with a Palm m505 ($600), m500 ($550), or m125 ($500). [Note: Reader Michael Barsoom points out with a note from Xircom tech support that the module does not work with Linksys access points.]

Thursday, 29 November 2001

Do you think Bluetooth connectivity for personal area networks (PNAs) isn't hot? Bluetooth chip-maker CSR is citing research from Cahners In-Stat and IMS that says Bluetooth chipsets will outsell 802.11b chipsets in 2001. Micrologic Research predicts Bluetooth chipset growth to hit 45 million sold in 2002, and 1.2 billion by 2005.

Next month at the Bluetooth Developers Conference in San Francisco, Bandspeed and Open Interface will announce a product that uses Adaptive Frequency Hopping to allow Bluetooth products and connections to work without signal interference from 802.11b WLANs. Get details at 80211 Planet.

Intel's AnyPoint Network Gateway Model 1300 is the first gateway to be certified for Universal Plug and Play (UPnP). Other UPnP devices and computers connected to it will automatically be configured for Internet access.

Wednesday, 28 November 2001

Are you live in Wilmington, NC and use cable modems from Time Warner Road Runner, you're in the first community being offered access to a new program from SOHOware to help expand broadband to all family members in the home.

Virata Corporation's Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) software will be used in future products from Hewlett-Packard. UPnP will provide data sharing and communications between all UPnP enabled devices on a home network, including PCs with Windows XP.

Tuesday, 27 November 2001

Agere Systems has announced the BG-2000 Broadband Gateway, a $199 SOHO product that will be available in January 2002. It will be Wi-Fi compliant, have built-in firewall and VPN, and a second Ethernet port. Get details at 80211 Planet.

Synergy Research Group has market analysis that says the WLAN market for enterprise, SOHO, and home increased 19 percent in the third quarter of 2001, despite the economic downturn. Companies sited as having especially good quarters in the WLAN space were Cisco, Agere, Linksys, Netgear, Buffalo, and D-Link.

Monday, 26 November 2001

Multi-Tech Systems will be shipping a SOHO DSL/Cable modem VPN device, the RouteFinder RF550VPN, next month. It will come with 10/100Mpbs switch support for 3DES 168-bit encryption on up to 5 VPN tunnels, IKE, PPPoE, NAT, and DHCP.

Going to Macworld Expo in San Francisco in January? Want to learn more about Mac OS X network protocol analysis (and who doesn't)? WildPackets is hosting four free training sessions near the convention center on January 9 and 10. They've also just released protocol analyzers for Windows XP.

Office Depot deals: Get a $100 rebate on the 2Wire HomePortal 100 or the wireless HomePortal 100W on product purchased before December 8, 2001. (Thanks to Winston Weinmann for the tip.)

Wednesday, 21 November 2001

Actiontec Electronics has announced that their USB and PC Card 802.11b adapters will be available in the United Kingdom in December.

Tuesday, 20 November 2001

Meetinghouse Data Communications is offering free Linux-based client-side software for network authentication when a client logs into a RADIUS or 802.1x server.

Gateway has announced a new "House Call" program, using its 296 stores in the United States as dispatch hubs for technicians who will come to a user's home to install computers, printers, and, of course, wireless home networks. They'll install all network adapters and hardware for the $499 Gateway Wireless Home Network Solution which consists of Intel AnyPoint Wireless II gateway and adapters with 128-bit WEP encryption.

Monday, 19 November 2001

The US National Cable and Telecommunications Association is reporting that there are 6.4 million cable modem users in the United States as of the third quarter of 2001, and 824,000 of them signed up for service in just the third quarter of 2001. The growth seems good, but it's just a a small portion of the 70 million people who could get a cable modem if they want it.

Proxim has recieved FCC certification for the Harmony 802.11a Access Point and PCI card adapter, which will allow them to start shipping in the United States.

A market research report by Forward Concepts claims that while enterprise wireless LANs are the biggest market now, that home networks using wireless for computers, PDAs, home electronics, and even phones will take the lead by 2005. 802.11b is forecast to be the dominant standard.

Friday, 16 November 2001

Bluesocket's WG-1000 enterprise gateway product will support the 802.1x security standard, even for pre-802.1x networks. It's going to be compatible with just about any upcoming standard for wireless networking, including 802.11a, 802.11g, and HiperLAN2. Get more details at 80211 Planet.

Spoke too soon: WLAN chip maker Intersil is announcing support for the IEEE's now confimred standard of 802.11g, which will have data rates of 54Mbps second but will interoperate with the popular 11Mbps 802.11b because they share space in the 2.4GHz frequency (802.11a runs at 5Ghz). Intersil will, of course, be making 802.11g silicon for OEM product makers.

Thursday, 15 November 2001

80211 Planet & internetnews are reporting that the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) may be dropping 802.11g as a possible standard that would have increased speed but still interoperated with 802.11b (unlike 802.11a which doesn't work with 'b' and is only licensed for the U.S.). The story also has a brief history of the 802.11 standard in general.

Sony Corporation and AOL Time Warner are entering a non-exclusive strategic relationship to develop easy-to-use home networking technologies for consumers. Their first products will likely include broadband gateways, an Internet browser made for optimal performance on networked consumer electronic devices, and, of course, America Online access on most Sony devices. Any products developed will reportedly be done with an open architecture.

Dell'Oro Group reports that sales in the 802.11b market increased 9% in the third quarter of 2001. They forecast another 35% increase for 2002, despite the arrival of the faster 802.11a standard in products.

Ionic Microsystems and Conexant Systems have entered an agreement to share technology. Ionic will provide access point software (soon to be ported for 802.11b usage) for Conexant's line of home networking processors, while Ionic will be creating a Bluetooth access point/router built around Conexant's home networking processor line.

DoBox, a home gateway software maker for OEMs, is partnering with National Semiconductor to develop "family-focused" gateways that would use DoBox's firewall technologies.

Finnish company Patria Ailon is entering the U.S. marketplace (to OEMs at least) with its Ailonet, a base station that supports 802.11a, 802.11b, Bluetooth, and even GSM.

Antenna maker Galtronics launched its PEAR Wireless 802.11b products at Comdex, including access points made to mount on the wall ($659), ceiling ($965), and desktop ($299, as well as a USB ($149.95) and PC Card ($129.95) adapters. Read details at 80211 Planet.

Wednesday, 14 November 2001

At the end of the month at the Western Cable Show, 802.11a chipset developer Magis Networks will demonstrate a wireless 5GHz transmitting high-definition television. Read more about it at 80211 Planet.

Symbol Technologies has a Wi-Fi developer kit for OEMs who want to embed WLAN functions into low cost devices. Details at 80211 Planet.

Tuesday, 13 November 2001

TROY Wireless has released new 802.11b and Bluetooth products. They include the $299 EtherWind 802.11b print server, the $129 EtherSync 802.11b PC Card, a WindConnect Bluetooth device for printers, and a WindPort PC Card for laptops needing Bluetooth connectivity.

It's official: the Wireless Ethernet Compatibility Alliance (WECA) will be calling all 54Mbps 802.11a certified products by the name Wi-Fi5. The five indicates the 5 GHz band used by 802.11a.

Agere Systems is releasing WEPplus, a software security enhancement for ORiNOCO Wireless LANs and OEM products. It will prevent hacker programs like AirSnort from taking advantage of the "weak key" in the Wireless Equivalent Privacy (WEP) protocol that encrypts 802.11b transmissions. WEPplus should be available for download on November 23. Check details at 80211 Planet.

The Home Phoneline Networking Alliance (HomePNA) has announced an extension of the 2.0 specification to include Voice-over-HomePNA, a framework for building voice services into Phoneline networks. They also introduced a document to guide members into the 3.0 specification. It will include more broadband entertainment such as video-on-demand, as well as voice, file and Internet sharing without disruption to regular phone service.

Cisco is expanding its WLAN service and security, embracing 802.11b as a wireless standard and enhancing current equipment like its Aironet 350 with a new security upgrade that should be available next month. Read about it at 80211 Planet.

Yankee Group says that broadband cable modem or DSL connections will be available to fully three quarters of the population of the United States by the end of 2001, up from 60% at the end of 2000. They also say cable companies will save millions by making most cable modems self-installed by customers.

Proxim's Harmony and SkyLine 802.11a CardBus cards are reported by the company to be fully XP compatible. More at 80211 Planet.

Intel has introduced 802.11a 54Mbps wireless products into its PRO/Wireless 5000 LAN family. The access point, CardBus adapter, and PCI adapter will be priced at $449, $179, and $229 respectively. They'll include PROset software for configuration as well as profile switching for clients. Read about them at 80211 Planet.

Netgear is showing live demonstrations this week at Comdex of its new Powerline technology, including for the first time a router for sharing Internet access over existing 110V outlets in the home.

Linksys has five new Wi-Fi certified products showing at Comdex this week including a Wireless Presentation Gateway (WPG11) for remote project control in corporate meetings, a Compact Flash card (WCF11) for Pocket PCs, a Wireless to Ethernet Adapter (WET11) for Ethernet equipped products like PCs or printers, and others. Read detail at 80211 Planet.

Apple Computer has released AirPort 2.0 software, providing support for America Online to the Airport Base Station, 128-bit WEP encryption, RADIUS authentication, and support for 50 simultaneous users (up from 10). Read about it at 80211 Planet.

Statistical Research and Knowledge Networks have finished a joint study that shows adoption of "advanced media technologies," such as broadband Internet access, has leveled off in the United States since this time last year -- it's reported at still only 9% of the population.

Saturday, 10 November 2001

Maxgate.net appears to be back up and running as of right now, but the company's phone numbers have still all been disconnected. Download any firmware or driver updates you need for your Ugate products now so you'll have them handy.

Mediabolic, which earlier this week announced UPnP support for its Mediabolic ONE platform, is teaming with Pioneer to integrated the ONE platfom in to new entertainment products

Toshiba America Business Solutions will be showing a new document controller at Comdex 2001 that builds in Wi-Fi support for ad hoc and infrastructure mode printing. The technology should be available in December in its e-STUDIO28/35/45 digital MFP series of workgroup copier/printers. 80211 Planet has details.

Ricoh's RDC-i700 Internet Ready Digital Camera for surveillance has built in 802.11 technology for transmitting images in real-time. Read about it at 80211 Planet.

Thursday, 8 November 2001

The Fiber-to-the-Home Council says that America is starving for broadband services and the economy is suffering because of it. FttH hopes the proposed Broadband Internet Access Act of 2001, which has been before the U.S. House of Representatives and Senate since January 2001, will make a difference. Read the story at OpticallyNetworked.com.

Audio over Internet Protocol -- or AoIP -- maybe be pivitol in the broad adoption of wireless networking in the home in the coming years. 80211 Planet investigates one company's take on delivering MP3 over Wi-Fi networks.

3Com, already a maker of 802.11b and Bluetooth connectivity products, has announced support for 802.11a 5GHz high speed WLAN in future products. They should be available in mid-2002.

Atheros Communications, maker of 802.1x chipsets, is the first company to earn the "Designed for Windows XP" logo for it's 802.11a WLAN products, specifically for its AR5000 CardBus. 80211 Planet has details.

Wednesday, 7 November 2001

Netgear has improved its Gigabit over Copper product line for small businesses by releasing the Windows XP-compatible GA302T Copper Gigabit Adapter ($90 street price), the FS309T 8-port Fast Ethernet Switch with Copper Gigabit Uplink ($199) and the FS509T 8-port Fast Ethernet Switch with Copper Gigabit Uplink ($290), all making for affordable 1000Mbps speeds over standard Category 5 UTP cable.

Mediabolic has announced support for Universal Plug and Play (UPnP) in its Mediabolic One Convergence platform to be used in various consumer electronics and set-top boxes which eventually will be able to communicate with your home PCs.

Tuesday, 6 November 2001

Linksys has announced new 14Mbps PowerLine networking products in its Instant PowerLine series: a 10/100 router (PLERT10, $179.99 estimated street price), 10/100 bridge (PLEBR10, $149.99), and a USB adapter (PLUSB10, $149.99). The product are reportedly enhanced for users of cable/DSL modems. All use Intellon's PowerPacket tech. They'll be highlighted at Comdex, and available in December.

BOPS, Inc. has introduced a chip for use in processing the physical layer of the OSI model in 802.11a, 802.11b and other wireless networks. Get the full scoop at 80211 Planet.

Thursday, 1 November 2001

It would appear that Maxgate is out of business. Its site at www.maxgate.net is down, and calls to them bring back reports of the phones being disconnected, except for one number with a recording stating that all support for the Ugate line of products is gone. Ugate product firmware upgrades are still available from Umax.



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