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How to connect to wireless network if SSID not broadcast?

By Debbie23
May 9, 2009
  1. Was wondering about added security of using MAC filtering and WPA2 encryption, when saw this post here:
    http://www.techspot.com/vb/topic59062.html
    On typical private home network, if set router NOT to broadcast SSID, what are general steps to connect a wireless device (my case, laptop) to the network - since you don't see network names available?

    Then what about each time you connect w/ that wireless device to network?
    In this case, router is Linksys WRT54GL. Laptop uses Vista x32.

    Thanks.
     
  2. lopdog

    lopdog TS Maniac Posts: 378

    In my case, running three computers with Vista/XP and a D-Link DIR300 router, I stopped broadcasting the SSID, and the computers detected an "Unknown network". I then had to type in the exact SSID, and after that I was asked for the password. Later, Windows recognized the network automatically on those computers, and connected without asking any questions (I think I had to select "connect automatically" or something like that.)
     
  3. LookinAround

    LookinAround TechSpot Chancellor Posts: 8,395   +169

    1. Lopdog is spot on. On your computer, you need to configure a wireless profile where you explicitly tell it the SSID you want to connect to (along with its password) vs. connecting to an SSID that's broadcast and appears in a list of broadcast network SSID's

    2. But to be clear... this is NOT a substitute for MAC filtering or WPA2 but an additional layer of security you should do in ADDITION to applying MAC filtering and WPA2
     
  4. account73

    account73 TS Rookie Posts: 65

    I dont really think it's worth hiding your SSID. People say it's added security, but to be honest the people who want and know how to get on your network wont have any problems with this at all. It be just the same to them as it would be if you were broadcasting your SSID. And as for MAC address filtering, well again it's easy enough to get around.
    Dont get me wrong there's nothing wrong with having a hidden SSID and MAC address filtering. For me the added protection it adds is way too minor for me to bother with it.
    Most importantly is that you are using wpa or wpa2 with a strong passkey :)
    ( Random letters and numbers, symbols and a good length long )
     
  5. Debbie23

    Debbie23 TS Rookie Topic Starter Posts: 68

    Thanks all for replies.

    Regardless of security value of hiding SSID, I couldn't get wireless laptop to connect, even typing in the network info ("Manually Connect to a Wireless Network) in Network & Sharing, so gave up on it.

    NOW, have a problem w/ pap2t VOIP adapter, AFTER turning Broadcast SSID back on in WRT54GL. PAP2 gets dial tone when power off / on router, then loses it after ~5 min.

    Router itself has NO prob getting & keeping internet conn for both computers.

    I had this prob a few days ago after get the new WRT54GL. Future Nine support had me change (update, really) a few settings in pap2t, and it worked fine for a couple of days.

    Until I messed around w/ the SSID in router. Now pap2t is back to same old prob of losing dial tone.

    Did restore backup settings for router - no help. Not sure if I'm going to have to reset pap2t to factory settings, then reenter all suggested settings for Future Nine, or what might fix prob.

    If any suggestions, I'd appreciate it. Thanks.
     
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