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Does anybody know what extensible means in the sense of Wireless Lans? How is the system extensible?

Cisco Employee

Re: Extensible??

Extensibility, in terms of:

“Enterprise authentication and security architecture based on the in progress Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) 802.1x and Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) standard”


“delivers scalable, centralized security management and supports dynamic single-session, single-user encryption keys integrated with network logon. This security solution dramatically simplifies the administration and management of the network by eliminating the deficiencies of static Wired Equivalent Privacy (WEP) key management"

RFC2284 PPP Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP)

"EAP does not select a specific authentication mechanism at Link Control phase, but rather postpones this until the Authentication Phase. This allows the authenticator to request more information before determining the specific authentication mechanism. This also permits the use of a "back-end" server which actually implements the various mechanisms while the PPP authenticator merely passes through the authentication exchange."

Community Member

Re: Extensible??

Gee - this sounds like a homework question! To me, extensible, when referring to wireless LANs, means that I can extend wireless connectivity across my entire enterprise. You can have literally thousands of devices connected into a wireless LAN if you have a well designed network with enough access points and wireless bridges. Of course, using CSMA/CA for access control means that you probably want to consider using good network design concepts to include wired switches/routers as appropriate given the traffic flows needed in any given environment. 802.11b is extensible in that all the components necessary for building a large and robust network are present. Multivendor support, solid standards, connectivity into the wired world (and other forms of wireless like fixed broadband and Bluetooth), etc..

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