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Step-by-Step Guide: How to create a VPN for your wireless network

With wireless networks proliferating it is a good idea to understand what it takes to build a VPN for a wireless gateway. Contributor and Microsoft MVP Brien Posey details the necessary steps in this step-by-step guide.

Although wireless networks have rapidly gained popularity because of the flexibility that they give to users, they...

have created some interesting security challenges for network administrators. What these security challenges all boil down to is that it is dangerous to allow users to connect to your corporate network over the airwaves. After all, how can you really tell for sure whether the person accessing the network is one of your users, or a hacker who's sitting in a van in the parking lot?

One way that you can help to protect resources on your wired network from those who might attempt to access it wirelessly is to implement a wireless gateway VPN (Virtual Private Network). VPNs have traditionally been used to allow users to securely connect to corporate networks over the Internet. However, the same technique can be applied to wireless networks. After all, a wireless network is basically an untrusted, insecure medium, just like the Internet. You can use a VPN as a way of allowing legitimate users to establish a secure, encrypted and, most importantly, authenticated connection between their computers and the wired network. In this article, I will explain how to create this type of VPN.


How to create a VPN for your wireless network

 Home: Introduction
 Step 1: Server requirements
 Step 2: Server placement
 Step 3: Setting up the certificate authority
 Step 4: Configuring the authentication server
 Step 5: Configuring the VPN server
 Step 6: Configuring wireless clients

ABOUT THE AUTHOR:
Brien M. Posey, MCSE, is a Microsoft Most Valuable Professional for his work with Windows 2000 Server and IIS. He has served as CIO for a nationwide chain of hospitals and was once in charge of IT security for Fort Knox. As a freelance technical writer, he has written for Microsoft, TechTarget, CNET, ZDNet, MSD2D, Relevant Technologies and other technology companies. You can visit his personal Web site at www.brienposey.com.
Copyright 2005 TechTarget
This was last published in December 2005

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