Posted at Jun 21/2005 03:06PM:

Session on

Integration of wireless and wired networks

Some notes

what are key differences between wired and wireless networks?

physical medium:
WIRED: (some sort of) wire, physically contained/fixed
WIRELESS: no medium! not physically contained

WIRED: a lot! :)
WIRELESS: not a lot ... :)

distance you can practically reach:
WIRED: quite limited (within the scope of our possibilities)
WIRELESS: you can go quite far (... 100 km, within today's limits)

WIRED: rather inflexible
WIRELESS: rather flexible - also means: expect a lot of technical change within the network

number of (potential) users:
WIRED: usually known quite well
WIRELESS: not neccessarily known or predictable

identity of users:
WIRED: usually known, controllable
WIRELESS: might be unknown, difficult to control

WIRED: secure
WIRELESS: unsecure
PLS NOTE: this was input discussed quite lively. the author of these lines does not agree! discuss!

was argued lively .... ultimately no easy answer found. --


There a re many fundamental differences between wired and wireless networks.

Therefore, it is a good idea to separate/segment networks on TCP/IP level. We went through this for the example of a campus network.

Keywords are: subnetting, NAT, VLAN, Routing, Firewalls, etc

(The talk on IP routing (by Chaudhari) will give more detail on this!)

Note that subnetting and logical separation of networks is a very good idea in general, not just for wireless/wired scenarios.

Good logical design is a prerequisite for good management and troubleshooting.
E.g. avoid totally flat networks, where one DHCP server serves everybody.

Possible separation structures include: Internal/external, public/restricted, structuring by faculty or department, etc

We further discussed
Bandwidth control and shaping, prioritization of traffic,
the limited bandwidth of wireless networks as a possible 'natural' bandwidth control.
Port restrictions - e.g. maybe you only allow port 80 on a public open network.

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