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Wifi Router networking configurations with Auto and Mixed Mode revisited

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by Mountain Computers Inc., Publication Date: Saturday, June 26, 2021

View Count: 651, Keywords: Wifi, WPA, WPA2, Auto, Mixed Mode, Hashtags: #Wifi #WPA #WPA2 #Auto #MixedMode

Over the last year, new WIFI routers coming from the factory are in WPA2 mode and not allowing mixed or auto mode to step down and allow pre-gen wifi devices. Well, the security at WPA is strong, WPA2 stronger, yet then again, most folks in the household have computers 3-5 years old and getting new routers and these configurations need to be updated.
I prefer turning on AUTO and MIXED MODE to allow non-WPA2 compatible devices to connect.
If you can get into your ISP provided router, which they now let you do, look at the settings. In the past the west coast broadband providers like CenturyLink, Comcat, Charter/Spectrum,  they did not let you get into the router, yet now they let you into the router and make configuration changes as needed.
The caveat is we are not running a bank or a trading company, yet all the transactions and tcp/ip activity is usually encrypted at the source to the client. If you are running super high risk applications and transactions, stay on WPA2.
If you are in a moderate density residential environment, then you are relatively safe to be on WPA, yet if you are in a concentrated high density zone like a college, university, business park, then definitely get on WPA2.
Range, speed, strength, auto-signal tuning and the like are in play here, so 4 to six antenna's keep them all at a little different angle to improve overall connectivity for even infrequent traffic, versus sustained and burst mode.
Let me explain something funny about WIFI configurations on your routers, that I almost don't have to explain anymore.
1. WEP - crackable in 3-8 seconds
2. WPA - more secure
3. WPA2 - very secure
* TKIP - not as advanced and one step down from AES
* AES - advanced government level encryption
2.4Ghz - like AM Radio, long range (2500+ ft or less), good bandwidth, not necessarily line of sight requirement but helps for the longer range,
5.0Ghz - like FM Radio, short range (100+ ft or less, excellent bandwidth, line of sight required
and there is one more that I won't disclose above 5.0Ghz that is like Satellite Radio / XM Sirius that is crazy fast and yet crazy touchy.
* location of the antenna/router is important, usually near the ceiling is best yet not on the ceiling, or even just inside the false roof of a cubicle area, and then again, the signal shape / envelope is like an apple shape/heart shape, 90' off angle of the antenna position orientation (straight up angle at 0' or off angle at 45' or 90' at 3 o'clock). Remember, 4-6 antenna's all in the shape orientation is not necessarily good. Canter a few of them off being straight up. you will notice the difference.
* wifi extenders are bogus, at least the residential consumer grade - don't waste your time and money
REF: https://community.cisco.com/t5/wireless-mobility-documents/what-is-wpa-mixed-mode-operation-and-how-do-i-configure-it-in-my/ta-p/3131404
more to come...

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