Chapter Summary

Wireless LAN components include radio NICs, access points, routers, repeaters, and antennae that enable wireless applications in buildings and campus areas. These components are building blocks for implementing wireless LANs in homes, small offices, enterprises, and public hotspots. These networks can range from having a single access point in a home or small office to hundreds of access points covering a large facility. Or, the wireless LAN might include only two users communicating directly with each other using ad hoc mode.

802.11 is by far the most prominent standard worldwide, with data rates up to 54 Mbps and operation in either the 2.4-GHz or 5-GHz frequency bands. Wi-Fi offers assurance of interoperability among manufacturers of 802.11-compliant wireless LAN components, and HiperLAN/2 is a European-based standard that is unlikely to compete heavily with 802.11.