Question about Airport and wireless networks

Magritte

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 14, 2007
91
0
Los Angeles, CA
In our house we have a wireless network that is technically open since it doesn't require a password. It is secure, however, in that it requires the MAC addresses of any computer that wants to go on it so not just anyone passing by can use it.

Even though I have this network in my "preferred" list (it's the only one in there in fact), I always get asked if I want to connect to it since there are no trusted networks. I just changed the setting so that it automatically connects without asking, but is there any way to make our network a trusted one, or does that only work with networks that require a password?
 

devman

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2004
1,235
4
AU
a MAC address filter can be easily defeated. Kismet (for example) will show you the list of attached MAC addresses - they are transmitted in the clear. Now someone has valid MAC address to try and connect with...

Depends on what level of security you care about.
 

gr8tfly

macrumors 603
Oct 29, 2006
5,298
48
~119W 34N
Not sure about whether that would affect the "trusted network" status, as I haven't used MAC filtering.

But, it really isn't secure, outside of login restrictions, since there's no encryption.

If the network requires a password, and you save it to Keychain, the Mac will automatically connect (by default), without asking for it again.
 

Magritte

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 14, 2007
91
0
Los Angeles, CA
Okay, well, regardless of the level of security, the question remains, can my network be considered a "trusted" one or am I just going to have to have it automatically connect to the open one and leave it at that? The network will remain without a password.
 

gr8tfly

macrumors 603
Oct 29, 2006
5,298
48
~119W 34N
Okay, well, regardless of the level of security, the question remains, can my network be considered a "trusted" one or am I just going to have to have it automatically connect to the open one and leave it at that? The network will remain without a password.
I might be missing something, but it sounds like your goal is to not have it ask about connecting to the "trusted network". The end result being the same as when you set it to automatically connect.

"trusted" just means you know the network you are connecting with. You wouldn't want it to automatically connect to an unknown network.
 

devman

macrumors 65816
Apr 19, 2004
1,235
4
AU
don't know. I can't follow exactly what you're doing.

If you go to System Preferences then click on Network , highlight Airport then click configure. Where it says preferred networks , add your current network into there and it should connect automatically after that. This is how I thought things worked - but I've never tired the scenario you are describing.
 

Magritte

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 14, 2007
91
0
Los Angeles, CA
Where it says preferred networks , add your current network into there and it should connect automatically after that.
Right, I have done that, and it still tells me it can't find a trusted network so do I want to connect to the open network. I'm wondering if our network can only be "trusted" if it's password-protected.

There is the option to have it automatically connect to an open network without asking, which I have turned on while I'm using my laptop at home, but I'm going to have to remember to turn that off when I take my laptop somewhere. It would be nice not to be asked every time about the open network, hence it would be nice if I could tell it that the open network "Magritte's Network" is trusted.

Hope that clarifies things, it's late and I'm rambling.
 

inf

macrumors 6502
Nov 22, 2006
275
1
Helsinki, Finland
I think the network cannot be 'trusted' unless it has password set. So as your network has only mac address based authentication / protection OS X won't read it as a trusted network, which it isn't in anyway.

You really should put some encryption for it, can't be so big problem can it?
 

Magritte

macrumors member
Original poster
Jul 14, 2007
91
0
Los Angeles, CA
I think the network cannot be 'trusted' unless it has password set. So as your network has only mac address based authentication / protection OS X won't read it as a trusted network, which it isn't in anyway.
Gotcha. That's what I suspected but I just wanted to verify that this is the case. Oh well, it's a minor annoyance.

You really should put some encryption for it, can't be so big problem can it?
Honestly, Mr. Magritte is the IT guy in the household and I don't fiddle with it. We tend not to have passwords for most stuff in the household and we don't live in an area where anyone's going to be cracking into our network anyway. I'll inquire though.

Thanks to everyone for helping me hammer this out.