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Day 14. Setting Up a Network with Window... > Configuring Authentication Options

Configuring Authentication Options

Authentication, knowing who’s at the other end of the wire, is a critical part of the security setup for a computer. Windows XP provides authentication options on the Authentication tab of the Local Area Connection Properties dialog box. This tab looks relatively simple, but it’s important to know how it works to ensure that you authenticate others before you trust them with access to your system.

Windows XP assumes that you want at least a modicum of authentication to take place, so it always enables the first option on this dialog box, Enable network access control using IEEE 802.1X (http://www.ieee802.org/1/pages/802.1x.html). All this means is that someone needs some form of identification to access your system, which includes a smart card, digital certificate, password, or biometrics. The RFC2284 Extensible Authentication Protocol (http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc2284.html) or EAP field contains entries that determine the type of authentication that Windows XP allows. The default type is using a smart card or other certificate. You can also choose the RFC1994 MD5 challenge mechanism (http://www.faqs.org/rfcs/rfc1994.html), also known as the Point-to-Point Protocol (PPP) Challenge Handshake Authentication Protocol (CHAP).


  

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