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A question frequently asked (FAQ) from
marine yacht customers. They
trying to connect an Apple Mac Laptop to a Yacht Wireless (WiFi)
and will get an error and will be unable to connect.
Other laptops will be connecting and receiving local network and
Internet, if available, connectivity. The Microsoft Windows laptops
will typically only have had to enter the Wireless Key (WEP or WPA) and
got on without any problem.
So why don't the Apple Computers work?
I actually discovered, along with a crew member of one of my yacht
I mentioned to him that the WEP key was not a text pass phrase, but was
a WEP hexadecimal numbering system 128-bit key. We had generated that
by hand to make it less difficult to guess and to use the full 128-bit
strength key. Now obviously I've mentioned elsewhere http://www.wifiyacht.net/Wireless-WEP-Keys.html,
not the best protection to use these days, WPA is. But if
you are using it well then you should be able to connect with an Apple
Mac OS X. The trick is that you have to tell the Apple Mac's Airport
Connection gizmo that the code key which you are entering is not a
"Password", meaning a text phrase, but is actually a number string in
the Hexadecimal Numbering System - in other words a 128-bit Hex WEP Key
Code. There should be an option in the Apple Airport Connection menu
exactly for that "128-bit hex" if the network is using WEP encryption.
All you have to do is select that and enter the key code that you have
(The following information has been taken from Apple's web site. I hope
they don't mind? Hey I'm just trying to help Apple Mac Users on Boats!)
There are two common types of wireless password protection, or
encryption, that can be used by wireless base stations. The newer
method is Wi-Fi Protected Access (WPA), but the older Wired Equivalent
Privacy (WEP) method is still more common. This document describes only
WEP. The steps listed here are not necessary if the base station you
are connecting to uses WPA, because all products treat WPA passwords
the same way. AirPort client to third-party base station
For AirPort 2.1 or later software
With AirPort 2.1 software and later, the password can be entered
without certain special treatments required in earlier software
versions. You must select your network from the AirPort menu bar item.
If the AirPort menu bar item (Figure 1) does not appear, you may select
it in the AirPort preference pane.
Figure 1 Opening the AirPort menu bar item
When prompted (Figure 2), you select the specific type of password that
is being used. If you do not know which type, ask your network
administrator. (If you are an Alan Spicer customer then I am your
Figure 2 AirPort password dialog
Tip: If you can't find an administrator, just try all four types. The
following section of this document can also help you make an educated
After making the selection, you may enter the password without the
quotation marks (if ASCII) or without the hex escapes (if hexadecimal).
These options are not available when selecting your AirPort network
from the Internet Connect application.
[That's all for now. If you have any questions on this please contact
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