Wintersemester 03/04

A WLAN access point development platform running under Linux


Wireless networks based on the WLAN standard IEEE 802.11b became very popular . An access point is the bridge between the WLAN to wired networks, especially the Internet. The aim of the HostAP-project is to offer on top of a Linux system the functionality of an access point. This allows great flexibility and the oportunity to exploit various scenarios.

The aim of the work is to setup a test-platform using Linux and the HostAP-software. Of special interest is a scenario with several access points which may communicate with each other over fixed networks (ethernet, powerline, etc.) and wireless networks. The user should be able to seamless roam between several such access points. Here, the difference between layer 2 and 3 bridging is interesting.

The Linux drivers allow to performe some of the layer 2 functionality of the WLAN systems in software. This way, it is possible to integrate in the MAC protocol new algorithms, which has been developed at our laboratory. The objective is a proper interface and a clarification of the available functionality for such integration.

The Linux systems offers the opportunity to add special functionality like DHCP-server, firewall, encryption or self-configuration to the system.

[1] Reyk Flöter, "Radio Free Penguin", c't, Vol. 7, p. 222, 2003
[2] HostAP project
[3] Wireless LAN resources for Linux
[4] Linux-WLAN (AVS)

Subject area WLAN 802.11, Linux, Roaming, MAC-Layer
Type of work 20% theory, 80% software
Student Theus Hossmann
Supervisor Christian Mauz, Dr. Marc Kuhn
Professor Prof. Dr. Armin Wittneben