A timid question...

Discussion in 'iPhone' started by Phitz, Jun 22, 2007.

  1. Phitz macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 21, 2007
    #1
    OK so I'm rather embarassed that I am asking this, but I live in a smaller town 70,000 people and there is very little Wi-Fi here. I am off to college where the campus is completely wireless, but secure.

    So here is the question that I have been holding back because I'm actually confident in my computer skills here:
    Will I be able to connect over a secure network, because my understanding is that wi-fi is unsecured? Someone help me out, minimal flaming would be nice, this is embarassing, people usually come to me for computer help.
     
  2. drinkmilk15 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    #2
    yes you should be able to connect to their wireless network. usually your school will give you a 'username' and you pick a password. this is probably the same username/password you'll use to register for classes, view grades, etc...you use this username and pass to gain access to the secured wireless network. thats how it worked on my campus when i was in college and is probably the same for yours.
     
  3. Deanster macrumors regular

    Joined:
    Jun 6, 2005
    #3
    There are several ways to secure networks - the first is by encrypting the transmission between the phone/laptop and the base station (WPA2/WPA/WEP are the protocols most often used for personal wireless), but since these require you to have a password up front, they're less common in institutional settings.

    Most universities and other 'public' places allow you to get onto the unencrypted wireless network directly, and then you must open a browser and log in with username and password, and then they will actually let you access network features beyond the original access point.

    This approach should work just fine with the iPhone, as it doesn't require the phone to do anything special - just connect to the network, and then open a browser.

    The browser will use SSL for the username/password exchange, so that's secure, and most institutions using this kind of setup require you to use SSL/TLS for e-mail, so that's also secure. Be aware, though, that this kind of setup can leave you and your transmitted data a bit more open than you'd prefer, so be cautious about what you transmit, and have a good firewall on your laptop. We don't know yet how the iPhone works in a WiFi environment, but it's hopefully not a sophisticated enough network node to even respond to external stimuli, so it's essentially its own firewall. I hope.
     
  4. Grimace macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    Feb 17, 2003
    Location:
    with Hamburglar.
    #4
    Hey Phitz, welcome to the forums and thanks for posting! There are a lot of really helpful folks here who are glad to help out -- especially when you ask a question so politely.

    You should be fine on your college network :)
     
  5. maccam macrumors 6502a

    maccam

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    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #5
    I was going to ask if I can use the iPhone on my wireless router :confused:
     
  6. maccam macrumors 6502a

    maccam

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    #6
    Sorry to go off topic but thats a small town? :eek: My nearest town is 7 miles away and theres about 3,000 people :rolleyes:
     
  7. drinkmilk15 macrumors newbie

    Joined:
    Jun 22, 2007
    #7
    yes that should work fine too
     
  8. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

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    Mar 19, 2006
    Location:
    PA
    #8
    Yep. As long as your router is not wireless N. (Which we believe the iPhone doesn't support) Ahem, which we don't know if it supports.

    See below for better information regarding backwards compatibility with Wireless N.
     
  9. Grimace macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #9
    Hmm...given that Apple's routers and cards are all N now, I find it hard to believe that it wouldn't support N.
     
  10. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

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    #10
    It very well could support N, I believe someone found in the FCC papers though it was tested on G. In that case, it would be backwards compatible so you'd have no problems with your router.
     
  11. drinkmilk15 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 22, 2007
    #11
    isn't 802.11n backwards compatible with a/b/g?
     
  12. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

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    #12
    Is it? I know G is backwards compatible I thought for some reason draft N wasn't. Wow, I'm throwing wrong answers out left and right tonight.
     
  13. drinkmilk15 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 22, 2007
    #13
    i'm not totally sure myself. but i believe so.
     
  14. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

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    #14
    Yeah, with further inspection you are correct.

    According to this site..

     
  15. maccam macrumors 6502a

    maccam

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    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #15
    Say guys since you are so friendly tonight i'll ask another question :p

    Am I going to be able to buy the iPhone and not use the phone part (without paying any money)? It says there's a two year contract, but is that only when it's activated?
     
  16. drinkmilk15 macrumors newbie

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    Jun 22, 2007
    #16
    thats pre-n though. i think pre-n is different than n. iono. doesn't matter i guess. :D
     
  17. SMM macrumors 65816

    SMM

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    Sep 22, 2006
    Location:
    Tiger Mountain - WA State
    #17
    Phitz,

    The members here are not ogres, or committed 'flamers'. They are helpful, considerate and will go to great lengths to solve problems. I am probably one of the biggest 'flamers' here. But, my targets are the people I perceive to be trollers and spreaders of disinformation. There is an active anti-Apple campaign being waged. I usually take exception to it.

    With that being said, you will enjoy this site. There is a wealth of direct feedback. There is also a vast amount of useful information already accumulated. Sometimes people post questions, before attempting to search for the information. The members are usually much more tolerant of this, than on other forums I frequent.

    Enjoy your stay!
     
  18. Aperture macrumors 68000

    Aperture

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    PA
    #18
    No one knows. Apple/AT&T haven't released any information regarding what you are asking however you may be required to sign up for a 2 year contract when you purchase it. Terminating your contract for $175 is a possibility but we don't know if it will render the phone useless (as in it asks you for a SIM card and you can't get past there). Another option is to buy it off eBay from someone who terminated their contract. With this route, expect to pay a premium and you also risk what I explained earlier.
     
  19. The Viking macrumors member

    Joined:
    Jun 18, 2007
    #19
    Not if it's set to N only, like my home Airport.

    In answer to the OP's question, there are 2 layers of security.

    The first layer is the wireless network itself. If it's got a password, all the traffic is encrypted on one level or another. If not, everything's sent in the clear.

    The second layer is the Internet itself. Using SSL, your traffic on secure pages is encrypted as well, even if you're over an open wireless connection. I'll expect the iPhone to have the standard lock icon for secure pages.
     
  20. Grimace macrumors 68040

    Grimace

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    #20
    It may be *severely* limited in it's use without activation by AT&T.

    This has not been widely discussed but the patent on the non-removeable battery allows you to call AT&T in the event of theft and have them deactivate the phone so that it WILL NOT RECHARGE!! That's a pretty sweet security measure.

    It may need to be activated with AT&T in the first charge cycle - or at an AT&T store if it runs out. We just don't know yet how this technology will be used in practice.

    Overall, we don't know if buying the iPhone requires you to pony up for the contract at the very same time or if you can buy the phone then go to AT&T to activate the (entire or partial) unit. There are conflicting reports so we'll just have to see.
     
  21. Furgster macrumors 6502

    Furgster

    Joined:
    Jun 16, 2007
    #21
    thats actually a really good question. my school does not allow computers onto their network that do not have their MAC address registered. yours might be the same way so be aware of that, where are you going to school?
     
  22. applehero macrumors 6502

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    Jun 12, 2007
    Location:
    29º 25' 26"N, 95º 29' 36"W
    #22
    You're one of the first people I've seen from WI on here. Are you going to be getting iPhone? Where are you going to go?
     
  23. maccam macrumors 6502a

    maccam

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    Feb 18, 2007
    Location:
    Wisconsin
    #23
    Yeah I'm buying an iPhone and I won't be using the phone part for like 2 or 3 years. I do hope that I can get mobile internet right away though.
     
  24. applehero macrumors 6502

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    Jun 12, 2007
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    29º 25' 26"N, 95º 29' 36"W
    #24
    What part of WI?? I'm going to be in the Sheboygan area hoping to get one. Trying to figure out the best place to go. Not sure what demand will be like in Milwaukee???
     
  25. maccam macrumors 6502a

    maccam

    Joined:
    Feb 18, 2007
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    Wisconsin
    #25
    I live around Rice lake, WI. And one day i'll go to the apple store in the Mall of America and get the iPhone :) (about 2.25 hours away from where I live) Or keep my fingers crossed and get it from www.apple.com
     

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