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Windows XP Unwired by Wei-Meng Lee

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Connecting to a Wireless Network

Up to this point, I have discussed the various standards in wireless networks, in particular the IEEE 802.11 specifications. All the theoretical discussions are not very exciting unless you get your hands dirty and try to set up a wireless network yourself. In the following sections, I show you how to connect to a wireless network using three different wireless cards and adapters.

Although I demonstrate each example using different hardware from Cisco, D-Link, and Linksys, wireless hardware vendors use the same or similar chipsets in their equipment. So, the installation and configuration procedures will be somewhat similar across different vendors and different product lines from the same vendor. You should still consult the documentation that comes with your hardware before installing anything.

Most wireless cards in the market today use the following chipsets:

  • Atmel

  • Broadcom

  • Lucent Hermes

  • Intersil PRISM-II and Intersil PRISM-2.5

  • Symbol Spectrum24

  • TI wireless

Some newer 802.11g wireless products (such as those from Linksys) use the Broadcom chipset.

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