How to get Open Source software onto your WLAN access point

by Guy Kewney | posted on 09 March 2002

What is OpenAP? OpenAP is the complete distribution of open-source software that is required to produce a fully 802.11b (WiFi) compliant wireless access point. One cool feature of OpenAP access points is their ability to do multipoint to multipoint wireless bridging, while simultaneously serving 802.11b stations.

Guy Kewney

The idea works like this.

You start with any access points based on the Eumitcom WL11000SA-N board. These are resold as: US Robotics (USR 2450) (tested) or SMC 2652W EZconnect Wireless AP (tested) or Addtron AWS-100 (not tested). There may be others.

Then you load OpenAP into the flash memory on the AP card. The basic recipe is this: Create a programming image and write it to a PCMCIA SRAM card.

Open the access point, replace the internal 802.11 PCMCIA card with the SRAM card you created above.

Power on the AP. Short a jumper. It will boot from the SRAM card and reprogram the onboard flash.

Wait a few minutes, you can watch what happens on the serial port (9600N8) if you like. Replace the 802.11 card, put the box back together and you are done.

Not for the beginner; but a vital resource for the skilled.