802.1x.docx - 802.1x authentication A common network access...

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802.1x authentication A common network access, three-component architecture features a supplicant, access device (switch, access point) and authentication server (RADIUS). This architecture leverages the decentralized access devices to provide scalable, but computationally expensive, encryption to many supplicants while at the same time centralizing the control of access to a few authentication servers. This latter feature makes 802.1x authentication manageable in large installations. When EAP is run over a LAN, EAP packets are encapsulated by EAP over LAN (EAPOL) messages. The format of EAPOL packets is defined in the 802.1x specification. EAPOL communication occurs between the end-user station (supplicant) and the wireless access point (authenticator). The RADIUS protocol is used for communication between the authenticator and the RADIUS server. The authentication process begins when the end user attempts to connect to the WLAN. The authenticator receives the request and creates a virtual port with the supplicant. The authenticator acts
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