Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) Troubleshooting

Configuring WEP encryption can be confusing, especially when using multiple WLAN products from different vendors. This article will offer some simple suggestions to aid your WEP configuration. A short description of the methods of WEP Encryption will help to avoid some of this confusion. Note: your airPointPro Outdoor will support both 64- bit and 128 –bit WEP.

There are two levels of WEP Encryption – 64 and 128 bit. You may also have heard the number 40-bit used in conjunction with WEP Encryption. 40- bit WEP and 64-bit WEP are two different names for the same encryption method. This level of WEP encryption has been called 40-bit because it uses a 40- bit secret key along with a 24- bit Initialization Vector (40 + 24 = 64). Because there has been no official standardization of these terms, wireless vendors may use either name.

Some simple troubleshooting tips for WEP configuration…
  1. If possible, before attempting to configure WEP, disable encryption and make sure yourwireless network is functioning.
  2. 128-bit WEP will NOT communicate with 64-bit WEP . 128- bit WEP also uses a 24-bitInitialization Vector (IV), however, it uses a 104-bit secret key. Therefore, make sure that all ofyour wireless devices are using the same encryption level. All smartBridges wireless devices will support 64-bit as well 128-bit WEP, as outlined in the 802.11b standard.
  3. Always use a Hexadecimal key for WEP. Other vendors may use an ASCII based key.Encryption using these two different keys may not communicate with each other. One must be converted.