Why do we use "WEP" so broadly?

General wireless news

10 posts • Page 1 of 1

Postby Brian Jame » Sat Sep 02, 2006 5:50 am

Hi,

Could someone please explain why wireless encryption--such as WEP or WPA, or whatever--continues to be referred to in some cases simply as "WEP"?

For example, in the main stats page, it just makes reference to APs secured with WEP, but I understand it also includes APs secured with WPA, or whatever else. I've also seen some drivers that refer to WEP when they really mean WPA.

Basically this isn't really a technical question, I'm just curious why WEP caught on to be a general term for "any wireless encryption scheme."

Postby Dutch » Sat Sep 02, 2006 7:28 am

Hi,

Could someone please explain why wireless encryption--such as WEP or WPA, or whatever--continues to be referred to in some cases simply as "WEP"?

For example, in the main stats page, it just makes reference to APs secured with WEP, but I understand it also includes APs secured with WPA, or whatever else. I've also seen some drivers that refer to WEP when they really mean WPA.

Basically this isn't really a technical question, I'm just curious why WEP caught on to be a general term for "any wireless encryption scheme."
Why do people continue to refer to a desktopcomputer as "the CPU" ?
Why do Politicians allways state that they are telling the thruth, when they lie ?
What's the airspeed of a unladen swallow ?

<Commandant Lassard>
There are many many many many questions that will go unanswered in life.
Yours is one of the them...
</Commandant Lassard>

Dutch
[url=http://www.wigle.net/gps/gps/StatGroup/listusers?groupid=20041206-00006][img]http://home19.inet.tele.dk/dutch/netstumblerwigle.gif[/img][/url]

Postby i_do_dew » Sun Sep 03, 2006 2:42 am

Why are all PC's assumed to be IBM compatabable?

Why do people use PCMCIA and CARDBUS interchangablely when they are not?

why ask why.....try bud dry.

Postby themacuser » Sat Sep 09, 2006 1:55 am

I think NetStumbler on some (rather, most) cards misdetects WPA as WEP. I know because I've seen it.

Postby i_do_dew » Sat Sep 09, 2006 4:44 am

I think NetStumbler on some (rather, most) cards misdetects WPA as WEP. I know because I've seen it.

welll since My card doesnt support WPA I cant see it detecting it. As it is Netstumbler doesnt have an entry for WPA at all so it sure cant report it. and alas, not every one is using netstumber.

Postby themacuser » Sat Sep 09, 2006 5:49 am

According to my friend, when he uses it, about half the time Netstumbler sees a WEP network, it thinks it is WPA.

Postby Dutch » Sat Sep 09, 2006 8:05 am

According to my friend, when he uses it, about half the time Netstumbler sees a WEP network, it thinks it is WPA.
Tell your friend that he is full of BS.
NetStumbler was programmed when WPA was just but a glimmer in the eyes of the members of the IEEE802.11 committee, and knows nothing about WPA. Therefore NetStumbler cannot discertain whether a network is encrypted with WEP or with WPA.

Just like Kismet, Kismac and all the other WiFi network scanning programs out there, NetStumbler checks whether the Privacy/encryption bit is set in the capabilities mask, and then identifies the network as using WEP.

Newer incarnations of Kismet (later than March 2005) and Kismac(AFAIR Oct 2005) does more dissectation of the data in the WPA header, thereby being able to disclose what encryptions the network are able to use, and therefore reporting whether a network uses WPA or not.

NetStumbler is not able to do this, in its current incarnation. When NetStumbler reports a network as using WEP, look at it as being reported as an Encrypted network instead.


Dutch
[url=http://www.wigle.net/gps/gps/StatGroup/listusers?groupid=20041206-00006][img]http://home19.inet.tele.dk/dutch/netstumblerwigle.gif[/img][/url]

Postby themacuser » Sat Sep 09, 2006 12:51 pm

According to my friend, when he uses it, about half the time Netstumbler sees a WEP network, it thinks it is WPA.
Tell your friend that he is full of BS.
NetStumbler was programmed when WPA was just but a glimmer in the eyes of the members of the IEEE802.11 committee, and knows nothing about WPA. Therefore NetStumbler cannot discertain whether a network is encrypted with WEP or with WPA.

Just like Kismet, Kismac and all the other WiFi network scanning programs out there, NetStumbler checks whether the Privacy/encryption bit is set in the capabilities mask, and then identifies the network as using WEP.

Newer incarnations of Kismet (later than March 2005) and Kismac(AFAIR Oct 2005) does more dissectation of the data in the WPA header, thereby being able to disclose what encryptions the network are able to use, and therefore reporting whether a network uses WPA or not.

NetStumbler is not able to do this, in its current incarnation. When NetStumbler reports a network as using WEP, look at it as being reported as an Encrypted network instead.

Dutch
I have seen Netstumbler see a network as "WPA". I think it gets the encryption scheme from the card driver (all it does is poll the driver) and some no-name-brand cards with drivers do actually send "WPA" back, as far as I know.

KisMac in active mode can see that a network IS WPA though, every time. And that's because the Apple driver says it is, when it scans.

The point at hand is though, that Netstumbler does see any encrypted network as WEP. I just asked my friend if he's ever seen it actually detect it as WPA, and he told me "about half the time". I haven't actually used Netstumbler much (kismac 99.5% of the time) though, I've only seen others use it, but I have seen it find a WEP network as WPA, and I have seen it actually say "WPA" for the encryption scheme.

Postby Dutch » Sat Sep 09, 2006 4:32 pm

I have seen Netstumbler see a network as "WPA". I think it gets the encryption scheme from the card driver (all it does is poll the driver) and some no-name-brand cards with drivers do actually send "WPA" back, as far as I know.

KisMac in active mode can see that a network IS WPA though, every time. And that's because the Apple driver says it is, when it scans.

The point at hand is though, that Netstumbler does see any encrypted network as WEP. I just asked my friend if he's ever seen it actually detect it as WPA, and he told me "about half the time". I haven't actually used Netstumbler much (kismac 99.5% of the time) though, I've only seen others use it, but I have seen it find a WEP network as WPA, and I have seen it actually say "WPA" for the encryption scheme.
I think Marius will be very surprised about anybody having seen WPA reported by NetStumbler, since NS does not "poll the driver for that information as a textstring.". NS follows the 802.11 specs, and looks at the privacy bit, and if that is reported as set, it displays WEP in the network list for that network. It is hardcoded to do so...

Dutch
[url=http://www.wigle.net/gps/gps/StatGroup/listusers?groupid=20041206-00006][img]http://home19.inet.tele.dk/dutch/netstumblerwigle.gif[/img][/url]

Postby themacuser » Sun Sep 10, 2006 2:08 am

OK, maybe my friend was mistaken. I'm kind-of going on my personal understanding here, and his word, as I stumble with KisMac. (which detects WPA nicely :) )

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