WPA2 PSK AES available on my zyxel modem?

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mehmeh12

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Hi Im currently using this zyxel modem found here
http://www.zyxel.com/web/product_fa...yGroupNo=AC5783AE-9475-41AD-BDA5-0997187F44AA
to connect to my wireless network. The zyxel page says that it supports WPA PSK with TKIP but under the configuration settings it allows for WPA2 PSK with AES. Im now using WPA2 PSK with AES as the encryption for my home network.

My questions are: am i using the wrong settings for my home encryption type? Why is WPA2 PSK with AES not mentioned on the modem specifications section on the zyxel website? Should i use WPA PSK with TKIP instead?
 

TerryNet

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WPA PSK with TKIP is perfectly good and safe, but WPA2 PSK with AES is even stronger. If it's working, don't worry about it.

When they revised the router's hardware for WPA2 or developed a new model with that feature either the tech writer or the web site administrator messed up or the engineering department forgot to notify all interested parties. No company is perfect. :)
 

mehmeh12

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Well this is the reason i am unsure if i am using WPA2 PSK with AES: I set my modem back to default which is WPA PSK with TKIP. Both my xp and vista laptop connect fine with this. Then using a direct ethernet connection i change the modem wireless security settings to WPA2 PSK with AES, as this setting is available in the drop down list. I then input a totally random 63 letter, number, symbol pass phrase as the new password for WPA2 PSK with AES. I then configure the wireless adapters in both my xp and vista laptop to the settings of WPA2 PSK with AES and the right pass phrase.

This is where the problem arises. When i turn on the SSID to broadcast both xp and vista connect fine. But when i set the SSID to not broadcast, my vista picks up a 'unnamed network' using WEP. This unnamed network is identical to my own network in terms of signal strength and radio type. Is my modem using WEP behind my back?? has someone hacked in using WEP?
 

TerryNet

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Just some kind of weirdness and annoyance from having the SSID broadcast disabled. Don't give yourself extra grief by disabling it. If you heard somewhere that it is a "security" feature, forget it. The only wireless security is encryption.
 

mehmeh12

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Yes oddly enough my xp laptop never finds a unnamed network using WEP and even when the SSID is set to not broadcast, xp can still connect fine.

So is this unnamed network using WEP some sort of vista OS error?

And does turning off the SSID and using my vista to connect to my proper network using WPA2 PSK with AES while having that unnamed network using WEP in the background present a security risk?
 

TerryNet

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If you are trying to secure your network by disabling SSID broadcast that is a large security risk because you may believe the myth that you have somehow increased security. If your network is already secured (encrypted) then disabling SSID broadcast is not a security risk.

You may be interested in reading about other wireless security myths.
 

mehmeh12

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Ok that was a very informative article you sent me :)

Im no longer hiding my SSID as this provides no real security at all. Though it still remains be be answered:why did my vista detect a unnamed WEP network when i had the SSID hidden> can you answer me this?
 

TerryNet

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why did my vista detect a unnamed WEP network when i had the SSID hidden> can you answer me this?
My best guess for this is as above: "Just some kind of weirdness and annoyance from having the SSID broadcast disabled."

My little testing of disabled SSID broadcast some time ago with XP showed that with some adapters/utilities there would be no mention of the "hidden" network while others would show everything about it except for the SSID would say (Hidden).
 

mehmeh12

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Im not sure if i follow on what your saying...are you saying that xp wireless adapters will detect either valid networks only or every single signal whatsoever?
 
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