Freebsd Access Point

John Nielsen lists at
Wed Oct 25 20:35:15 UTC 2006

On Wednesday 25 October 2006 16:23, Erik Richards wrote:
> This is my first submission to a freebsd mailing list so please bare with
> me. I am relatively new to Freebsd but I have so far set up a box at home
> acting as a gateway, firewall, and webserver with php and I'm really loving
> this OS (my version is 6.0).

Great! Consider following the upgrade instructions in the FreeBSD Handbook to 
bring your system up to 6.2-PRERELEASE or 6.2-RELEASE once it's released.

> Now I would like to create an access point.  
> I have a wireless card (Linksys wmp54gs, Broadcom 4318 chipset) I have read
> that I need to use ndiswrapper and windows xp drivers for it to work under
> Freebsd. And I need to use hostapd when configuring the card to act as an
> access point correct?  I have found documentation on these two separate
> issues but nothing combining them?  My question is, is it possible to use
> my linksys card under freebsd and set it up as an access point, or is it
> only possible with native drivers?

You don't need hostapd to create an access point. If your card and the driver 
it uses support it, you can create an access point using just ifconfig. 
Unfortunately, the ndis driver does not support "hostap" mode so you can not 
create a traditional "infrastructure" access point. However you should be 
able to create an "ad-hoc" network by doing something like this:

ifconfig ndis0 inet netmask ssid your_net mediaopt adhoc

Substitute the device name, IP address, netmask, and your desired ssid above 
as appropriate.

The other wireless stations on your network will also need to be set 
to "ad-hoc" mode using the same ssid.

> I've also set up my gateway and all the 
> computers behind it using static ips so will I still be able to make
> wireless work similarly?

Yep, should be no problem.

> I would also like to use WPA with my wireless setup.

This should be possible using ndis, but I don't remember for sure offhand.

> I almost forgot, I have 2 wired nic cards in my Freebsd box the one 
> I have connected to my inside LAN will I have to bride with my wlan card so
> my wireless connections can get out to the internet?

That's one option (see man 4 if_bridge), but I've found that it's easier just 
to have an external subnet, a wired internal subnet and a wireless internal 
subnet and let the FreeBSD box route between them. Since you've already set 
the box up as a gateway, this should be completely painless (you may not even 
need to do anything other than assign an IP on the new subnet to your 
wireless card).

> Thank you all very much for your help.



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