Learn about wireless network security in Windows® Vista
Discuss about the network security features in Windows Vista. What are the techniques to secure a wireless network on Windows Vista?
Windows Vista is the successor to Windows XP systems. The Windows Vista systems are recommended for the users who are concerned more about the network security with the computers. The system provides much better security options for the users who are connecting the systems to the network. The Windows Vista offers better security through the introduction of various features like User Account Control, support for authentication methods like WPA, WEP and 802.1X authentication, security options provided along with the Internet Explorer 7 software etc. Anti-spyware software called Windows Defender is also included with the Windows Vista systems as a precaution against the network security attacks. Another concept provided as a network security feature along with the Windows Vista systems is the Microsoft’s Trustworthy Computing Initiative.
Discussed below are methods to secure a wireless network on Windows Vista PC:
- Wi-Fi Protected Access
- 802.1X authentication
- Wired Equivalent Privacy
Wi-Fi Protected Access
The Wi-Fi Protected Access or WPA is the wireless network security method used by the Windows Vista Operating System users for the purpose of encrypting information. The modification of the network security key is monitored using the Wi-Fi Protected Access. Thus authentication of users while accessing the system through the network can be ensured using the WPA method. WPA and WPA2 are the two types of WPA authentication methods. Among them, WPA2 is more secure and provides much better security than WPA. But some of the network adapters and router devices do not work with the authentication method since the technology is a new one.
The security for the 802.11 wireless networks and systems are provided with the 802.1X authentication method. The security measures can be enhanced with the help of the 802.1x authentication. As the name indicates, the 802.1X authentication method uses the authentication server for the purpose of validating the users while trying to access the network. The authentication method can work along with the WPA keys and WEP encryption standards.
Users can use Wired Equivalent Privacy or WEP. This network security standard is more suited for older routers and adapters. The enabling or installation of the Wired Equivalent Privacy method upon the systems would setup a network key for the security purpose. The data communicated between the computers in the network would be encrypted using the WEP method. Since the technology is older, users are not recommended to use the method.
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