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Weekend Project: Set Up Safe Guest Wi-Fi with Linux

Dec 11, 2010, 11:03 (0 Talkback[s])
(Other stories by Nathan Willis)

"The holiday season is upon us, and you know what that means: relatives coming over wanting to use your WiFi. If you'd like to find a solution somewhere between "run an open, unsecured AP" and "hand out your WPA2 password to people who write things like that down on sticky notes" then setting up a captive portal is a convenient option.

"There are several open source captive portals to choose from for your Linux box, including NoCat, HotSpotPA, PacketFence, and ChilliSpot. Unless you have time to explore the features and options, however, a simple, actively-developed solution like WiFiDog is probably the best bet. WiFiDog will run on any Linux distribution, and is an optional package on most of the embedded Linux router firmware projects (like OpenWRT and DD-WRT).

"Obviously the task that a captive portal package performs depends on the presence of two (or more) network interfaces on the machine; the portal intercepts connections originating on the restricted interface, performs some sort of authentication, and subsequently begins routing traffic to the unrestricted interface, whether it is also on the LAN or is a WAN port"

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