What is an Access Point | Part 1

What is an Access Point | Part 1

What is an Access Point

An Access Point (AP) is a device that allows mobile users to connect to a wireless network. The access point is connected physically to a wired network (or via radio to another access point) receives and sends a radio signal to the user, allowing the connection.

You can connect multiple access points to the same wired network and / or with each other in this way to create a larger network that would enable the handover.

Low-cost wireless networks have become widely popular in the late ’90s and early 2000s because it can minimize the wiring of the network cables used in traditional Ethernet networks, dramatically reducing installation costs. Wireless networks also allow greater mobility to users, freeing them from the constraint of use of the terminal near a power outlet: in industry and commerce, for example, laptops or handheld wireless terminals allow users greater operational, such as the possibility to perform operations or correction of records of data, loading and unloading of goods, directly and in real time in the archives of mainframes. In the supermarket industry, wireless terminals assigned to the customer allowing recording of purchases and the subsequent payment of reduced or no interaction with the staff of case.

An 802.11 access point can communicate normally with about 30 clients within a radius of about 100 m. The bandwidth of communication can vary greatly depending on several variables such as internal or external placement, the height above the ground, the presence of nearby obstacles, the type of antenna, the current weather conditions, the radio frequency on which it operates and the power output of the device.

The band access point can be extended through the use of signal repeaters and reflectors, which can bounce or amplify radio signals that ordinarily could not otherwise be received. Some experiments have been performed in this direction in order to allow the extension of the scope of wireless networks at distances of several kilometers.

The typical use of an access point is to connect to a LAN and thus enables users with wireless devices to use the services of the LAN with the advantage of mobility. In this configuration, the Access Point acts as a gateway for wireless clients. Another use is to connect two separate LAN, for example, if a company’s two offices are separated by a highway, may be economically more advantageous to exploit the ether via two access points (one for each location), instead of bringing the underground cables (with possible problems of municipal permits). In this case the Access Point will be configured as defined bridge (bridge)

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