Strategies for resolving security and interference issues in 802.11 wireless computer networking : a thesis presented in partial fulfilment of the requirements for the degree of Masters in Engineering in Computer Systems Engineering at Massey University, Palmerston North, New Zealand
This thesis presents the outcomes of the research and development of strategies to improve 802.11 wireless networking security, reduce interference, and investigation into the trends of home users in the city limits of Palmerston North, New Zealand. The main contributions of the research are several types of improvement strategies that reduce interference, add additional layers of security to 802.11, and reports on wireless trends. The thesis begins with an overview of the current 802.11 security protocols and related issues. The current state of the 802.11 security is presented along with an assessment of efficacy of 802.11. Lastly, the motivations for improving security and reducing interference are explained. The main improvement presented within the thesis is that of client filtering. The operation of filtering is explained. Using methods from other filtering protocols its shown that how an additional layer of security can be added to 802.11. Following this, more improvements are shown that can be used with or without client filtering. The use of smart aerials, wizards and frequency selective materials is discussed and the advantages and disadvantages of each are highlighted, as well as the aspects and issues of implementing the strategies on a home personal computer based platform are presented. This is followed by a description of the experiments conducted into attenuation and direction sensing. The results of the experiments are presented along with the discussion. Finally, conclusions about the improvements are detailed and the results shown, in addition to research conducted on the trends of 802.11 users to further highlight the need for this research.