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Using an airport express in a hotel room

Discussion in 'Non-audio related DIY' started by inthefade, Feb 13, 2017.

  1. inthefade

    inthefade AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    451
    Location:
    Cleveland Ohio
    hopefully this is the right forum.


    I'm trying to set this up at home first to make sure it works.

    I want to use a Airport Express to connect to the wireless network and the plug it into a AirPort Extreme to create my own protected network.

    I think I have the express configured right as the light is green. I just password protected it and didn't use any security. I'll use the security on my extreme. As of now the light is green on the express and flashing amber on the extreme.

    Any tips for making this work?
     
  2. devnull

    devnull AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,339
    Location:
    NYC
    ok, I'll bite. Sorry, don't bounce around this forum too often. You've probably already made your trip.

    You're going to use a WIFI network to gain access to the internet. The WIFI network at the hotel is probably WPA2 protected. If not, don't use it.

    You're going to use a device to connect to the hotel WIFI network, and then connect that to another device that provides you a WIFI connection within your room.

    Is that correct?

    I don't see an advantage.

    Once the traffic leaves the Airport Express, and goes to the hotel WIFI network it's no different than it would be if you didn't connect the Airport Express and the Airport Extreme to it. and only used your laptop (or whatever) Unless you're using an encrypted communication from the source (probably your laptop, or whatever) to the destination (https or an encrypted communication depending on what you're attempting to do) it won't matter as once it leaves the Airport Express the traffic will be accessible to anyone that has access to the hotel WIFI.

    If your Airport Express provides a better connection to the hotel WIFI, then that might be a reason to go that way.

    Perhaps I don't understand. Let me know if I'm not understanding this correctly.
     
  3. inthefade

    inthefade AK Member Subscriber

    Messages:
    451
    Location:
    Cleveland Ohio

    Yes I think you have it right. I read that if I connected a airport express to the unsecured wifi then connected the extreme with encryption then my traffic would be encrypted.

    Your saying that even if I create my own network using the express to connect to the wifi then use the extreme for encryption that in the end nothing will be encrypted?
     
  4. devnull

    devnull AK Subscriber Subscriber

    Messages:
    1,339
    Location:
    NYC

    The traffic would be encrypted up to Airport Express, but after that probably not. HOWEVER I will fully admit that I don't anything about Apple products and they might do some things of which I am not aware. Perhaps the Airport Express forwards encrypted traffic to a proxy somewhere? I have no idea and am just speculating on that.

    Although I'd expect the WIFI connection to the hotel's network to be encrypted too, but since a number of people are using it, you're on the same network and they would be able to intercept your traffic. Anyone not on the hotel WIFI wouldn't have access to it. There is always risk involved, and it's a matter of you determining what is acceptable. There are plugins for browsers where they force https connections to web services/sites whenever they're available that could help.

    Here is one (out of perhaps many, haven't really researched them):

    https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/HTTPS_Everywhere

    It's from the EFF and Tor, which are organizations I respect and trust.

    There are also browser based vpn services that could be of value in protecting your traffic. I don't use these as I have a VPN solution for my personal stuff that connects me to a few proxy servers I run. That's an extreme and not easily set up so it's not really a good solution for more casual activity.

    There are some examples of browser based VPN tunnels here:

    http://www.makeuseof.com/tag/7-completely-free-vpn-services-protect-privacy/

    I can't vouch for any of them, but that's the concept I mentioned. You could do some searching and perhaps come up with something you found functional yet not too difficult to set up. The free services I would always scrutinize more than a paid service, although I wouldn't assume the paid service wasn't being invasive. A paid service will probably forgo ads, but could still use your browsing history to sell to other ad related companies.

    Good luck!
     
  5. Johnny 007

    Johnny 007 Active Member

    Messages:
    258
    One time, over in Thailand, I was staying at a guesthouse that had only wired internet. If you wanted the Internet you had to plug an ethernet cable into their outlet. Anyway, that was too restricting, so I went to the local computer store and bought an airport express for around $100. I hooked that up to the ethernet outlet and set up my own Wi-Fi network using the AirPort Utility on my laptop. It worked great.
     

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