1 1 Requirements for the internet connection

Название1 1 Requirements for the internet connection
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The numerical aperture of the fiber – The numerical aperture of a core is the range of angles of incident light rays entering the fiber that will be completely reflected.

  • Modes – The paths which a light ray can follow when traveling down a fiber.

    By controlling both conditions, the fiber run will have total internal reflection. This gives a light wave guide that can be used for data communications.

    3.2.6 Multimode fiber

    The part of an optical fiber through which light rays travel is called the core of the fiber. Light rays can only enter the core if their angle is inside the numerical aperture of the fiber. Likewise, once the rays have entered the core of the fiber, there are a limited number of optical paths that a light ray can follow through the fiber. These optical paths are called modes. If the diameter of the core of the fiber is large enough so that there are many paths that light can take through the fiber, the fiber is called “multimode” fiber. Single-mode fiber has a much smaller core that only allows light rays to travel along one mode inside the fiber.

    Every fiber-optic cable used for networking consists of two glass fibers encased in separate sheaths. One fiber carries transmitted data from device A to device B. The second fiber carries data from device B to device A. The fibers are similar to two one-way streets going in opposite directions. This provides a full-duplex communication link. Just as copper twisted-pair uses separate wire pairs to transmit and receive, fiber-optic circuits use one fiber strand to transmit and one to receive. Typically, these two fiber cables will be in a single outer jacket until they reach the point at which connectors are attached.

    Until the connectors are attached, there is no need for twisting or shielding, because no light escapes when it is inside a fiber. This means there are no crosstalk issues with fiber. It is very common to see multiple fiber pairs encased in the same cable. This allows a single cable to be run between data closets, floors, or buildings. One cable can contain 2 to 48 or more separate fibers. With copper, one UTP cable would have to be pulled for each circuit. Fiber can carry many more bits per second and carry them farther than copper can.

    Usually, five parts make up each fiber-optic cable. The parts are the core, the cladding, a buffer, a strength material, and an outer jacket.

    The core is the light transmission element at the center of the optical fiber. All the light signals travel through the core. A core is typically glass made from a combination of silicon dioxide (silica) and other elements. Multimode uses a type of glass, called graded index glass for its core. This glass has a lower index of refraction towards the outer edge of the core. Therefore, the outer area of the core is less optically dense than the center and light can go faster in the outer part of the core. This design is used because a light ray following a mode that goes straight down the center of the core does not have as far to travel as a ray following a mode that bounces around in the fiber. All rays should arrive at the end of the fiber together. Then the receiver at the end of the fiber receives a strong flash of light rather than a long, dim pulse.

    Surrounding the core is the cladding. Cladding is also made of silica but with a lower index of refraction than the core. Light rays traveling through the fiber core reflect off this core-to-cladding interface as they move through the fiber by total internal reflection. Standard multimode fiber-optic cable is the most common type of fiber-optic cable used in LANs. A standard multimode fiber-optic cable uses an optical fiber with either a 62.5 or a 50-micron core and a 125-micron diameter cladding. This is commonly designated as 62.5/125 or 50/125 micron optical fiber. A micron is one millionth of a meter (1µ).

    Surrounding the cladding is a buffer material that is usually plastic. The buffer material helps shield the core and cladding from damage. There are two basic cable designs. They are the loose-tube and the tight-buffered cable designs. Depending on the structural composition of the location in which the AP is installed and the size and gain of the antennae, the size of the cell could greatly vary. Most commonly, the range will be from 91.44 to 152.4 meters (300 to 500 feet). To service larger areas, multiple access points may be installed with a degree of overlap. The overlap permits "roaming" between cells. This is very similar to the services provided by cellular phone companies. Overlap, on multiple AP networks, is critical to allow for movement of devices within the WLAN. Although not addressed in the IEEE standards, a 20-30% overlap is desirable. This rate of overlap will permit roaming between cells, allowing for the disconnect and reconnect activity to occur seamlessly without service interruption.

    When a client is activated within the WLAN, it will start "listening" for a compatible device with which to "associate". This is referred to as "scanning" and may be active or passive.

    Active scanning causes a probe request to be sent from the wireless node seeking to join the network. The probe request will contain the Service Set Identifier (SSID) of the network it wishes to join. When an AP with the same SSID is found, the AP will issue a probe response. The authentication and association steps are completed.

    Passive scanning nodes listen for beacon management frames (beacons), which are transmitted by the AP (infrastructure mode) or peer nodes (ad hoc). When a node receives a beacon that contains the SSID of the network it is trying to join, an attempt is made to join the network. Passive scanning is a continuous process and nodes may associate or disassociate with APs as signal strength changes.

    3.3.3 How wireless LANs communicate

    After establishing connectivity to the WLAN, a node will pass frames in the same manner as on any other 802.x network. WLANs do not use a standard 802.3 frame. Therefore, using the term wireless Ethernet is misleading. There are three types of frames: control, management, and data. Only the data frame type is similar to 802.3 frames. The payload of wireless and 802.3 frames is 1500 bytes; however, an Ether frame may not exceed 1518 bytes whereas a wireless frame could be as large as 2346 bytes. Usually the WLAN frame size will be limited to 1518 bytes as it is most commonly connected to a wired Ethernet network.

    Since radio frequency (RF) is a shared medium, collisions can occur just as they do on wired shared medium. The major difference is that there is no method by which the source node is able to detect that a collision occurred. For that reason WLANs use Carrier Sense Multiple Access/Collision Avoidance (CSMA/CA). This is somewhat like Ethernet CSMA/CD.

    When a source node sends a frame, the receiving node returns a positive acknowledgment (ACK). This can cause consumption of 50% of the available bandwidth. This overhead when combined with the collision avoidance protocol overhead reduces the actual data throughput to a maximum of 5.0 to 5.5 Mbps on an 802.11b wireless LAN rated at 11 Mbps.

    Performance of the network will also be affected by signal strength and degradation in signal quality due to distance or interference. As the signal becomes weaker, Adaptive Rate Selection (ARS) may be invoked. The transmitting unit will drop the data rate from 11 Mbps to 5.5 Mbps, from 5.5 Mbps to 2 Mbps or 2 Mbps to 1 Mbps.

    3.3.4 Authentication and association

    WLAN authentication occurs at Layer 2. It is the process of authenticating the device not the user. This is a critical point to remember when considering WLAN security, troubleshooting and overall management.

    Authentication may be a null process, as in the case of a new AP and NIC with default configurations in place. The client will send an authentication request frame to the AP and the frame will be accepted or rejected by the AP. The client is notified of the response via an authentication response frame. The AP may also be configured to hand off the authentication task to an authentication server, which would perform a more thorough credentialing process.

    Association, performed after authentication, is the state that permits a client to use the services of the AP to transfer data.

    Authentication and Association types

    • Unauthenticated and unassociated

    • The node is disconnected from the network and not associated to an access point.

    • Authenticated and unassociated

    • The node has been authenticated on the network but has not yet associated with the access point.

    • Authenticated and associated

    • The node is connected to the network and able to transmit and receive data through the access point.

    Methods of authentication
    IEEE 802.11 lists two types of authentication processes.

    The first authentication process is the open system. This is an open connectivity standard in which only the SSID must match. This may be used in a secure or non-secure environment although the ability of low level network ‘sniffers’ to discover the SSID of the WLAN is high.

    The second process is the shared key. This process requires the use of Wireless Equivalency Protocol (WEP) encryption. WEP is a fairly simple algorithm using 64 and 128 bit keys. The AP is configured with an encrypted key and nodes attempting to access the network through the AP must have a matching key. Statically assigned WEP keys provide a higher level of security than the open system but are definitely not hack proof.

    The problem of unauthorized entry into WLANs is being addressed by a number of new security solution technologies.

    3.3.5 The radion wave and microwave spectrums

    Computers send data signals electronically. Radio transmitters convert these electrical signals to radio waves. Changing electric currents in the antenna of a transmitter generates the radio waves. These radio waves radiate out in straight lines from the antenna. However, radio waves attenuate as they move out from the transmitting antenna. In a WLAN, a radio signal measured at a distance of just 10 meters (30 feet) from the transmitting antenna would be only 1/100th of its original strength. Like light, radio waves can be absorbed by some materials and reflected by others. When passing from one material, like air, into another material, like a plaster wall, radio waves are refracted. Radio waves are also scattered and absorbed by water droplets in the air.

    These qualities of radio waves are important to remember when a WLAN is being planned for a building or for a campus. The process of evaluating a location for the installation of a WLAN is called making a Site Survey.

    Because radio signals weaken as they travel away from the transmitter, the receiver must also be equipped with an antenna. When radio waves hit the antenna of a receiver, weak electric currents are generated in that antenna. These electric currents, caused by the received radio waves, are equal to the currents that originally generated the radio waves in the antenna of the transmitter. The receiver amplifies the strength of these weak electrical signals.

    In a transmitter, the electrical (data) signals from a computer or a LAN are not sent directly into the antenna of the transmitter. Rather, these data signals are used to alter a second, strong signal called the carrier signal.

    The process of altering the carrier signal that will enter the antenna of the transmitter is called modulation. There are three basic ways in which a radio carrier signal can be modulated. For example, Amplitude Modulated (AM) radio stations modulate the height (amplitude) of the carrier signal. Frequency Modulated (FM) radio stations modulate the frequency of the carrier signal as determined by the electrical signal from the microphone. In WLANs, a third type of modulation called phase modulation is used to superimpose the data signal onto the carrier signal that is broadcast by the transmitter.

    In this type of modulation, the data bits in the electrical signal change the phase of the carrier signal.

    A receiver demodulates the carrier signal that arrives from its antenna. The receiver interprets the phase changes of the carrier signal and reconstructs from it the original electrical data signal.

    3.3.6 Signals and noise on a WLAN

    On a wired Ethernet network, it is usually a simple process to diagnose the cause of interference. When using RF technology many kinds of interference must be taken into consideration.

    Narrowband is the opposite of spread spectrum technology. As the name implies narrowband does not affect the entire frequency spectrum of the wireless signal. One solution to a narrowband interference problem could be simply changing the channel that the AP is using. Actually diagnosing the cause of narrowband interference can be a costly and time-consuming experience. To identify the source requires a spectrum analyzer and even a low cost model is relatively expensive.

    All band interference affects the entire spectrum range. Bluetooth™ technologies hops across the entire 2.4 GHz many times per second and can cause significant interference on an 802.11b network. It is not uncommon to see signs in facilities that use wireless networks requesting that all Bluetooth™ devices be shut down before entering. In homes and offices, a device that is often overlooked as causing interference is the standard microwave oven. Leakage from a microwave of as little as one watt into the RF spectrum can cause major network disruption. Wireless phones operating in the 2.4GHZ spectrum can also cause network disorder.

    Generally the RF signal will not be affected by even the most extreme weather conditions. However, fog or very high moisture conditions can and do affect wireless networks. Lightning can also charge the atmosphere and alter the path of a transmitted signal.

    The first and most obvious source of a signal problem is the transmitting station and antenna type. A higher output station will transmit the signal further and a parabolic dish antenna that concentrates the signal will increase the transmission range.

    In a SOHO environment most access points will utilize twin omnidirectional antennae that transmit the signal in all directions thereby reducing the range of communication.

    3.3.7 Wireless security

    As previously discussed in this chapter, wireless security can be difficult to achieve. Where wireless networks exist there is little security. This has been a problem from the earliest days of WLANs. Currently, many administrators are weak in implementing effective security practices.

    A number of new security solutions and protocols, such as Virtual Private Networking (VPN) and Extensible Authentication Protocol (EAP) are emerging. With EAP, the access point does not provide authentication to the client, but passes the duties to a more sophisticated device, possibly a dedicated server, designed for that purpose. Using an integrated server VPN technology creates a tunnel on top of an existing protocol such as IP. This is a Layer 3 connection as opposed to the Layer 2 connection between the AP and the sending node.

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