ath wep confusion

Randy Bush randy at
Fri Dec 14 22:00:32 PST 2007

i know wep sucks caterpillar snot. but, for layer nine reasons, i
am trying to get it going on a soekris 5501 to a winxp machine and
am pretty confused.

first, if i run open, with wep off at both ends, no problem. if i
enable wep, i get what seems line a simplex, one-way, connection.

first, the plan

		     Soekris 5501
		|                       |
		|              b ---ath0|
		|              r        |  LAN
     external   |              i --- vr1|
    ------------|vr0---NAT---- d        |  DHCP
       WAN      |              g --- vr2|
		|              e        |  Clients
		|              0 --- vr3|
		|                       |

    - vr0 gets address via DHCP from external link
    - bridge0 is hard coded as
    - dhcpd runs on bridge0 for the range to feed
      the LAN

this works if ath0 is wepless. turn on wep, and the soekris hears
the winxp machine asking for dhcp, but the winxp machine does not
hear the reply.

the tasty bits of /etc/rc.conf are:

    ifconfig_bridge0=" addm vr1 addm vr2 addm vr3 up addm ath0"
    ifconfig_ath0="channel 4 ssid rgnet-aden wep wepkey 13-characters mediaopt hostap up"

as i said, this fails. the soekris sees incoming dhcp requests, but
the responses (which show in tcpdump on the soekris) are not
received by the wireless winxp host. but if i then

    ifconfig ath0 -wep

at the command line, and then try from winxp, all is fine.

so my assumption is there is something i do not understand about
wep keying betweek a freebsd ath hostap and winxp.

clue bat, please.


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