How to build a secured powerline network
Region : Others
Model : TL-WPA4220
Hardware Version : Not Clear
Firmware Version :
How to build a secured powerline network?
Today, I show something about powerline adapters based on my experience and knowledge. I can tell you something which may help somebody to fix some problems or know a little knowledge on powerline communication. Just be happy!
First, Let us know How to build a powerline network?
There are three methods:
Method 1: As all TP-LINK PLC devices (not including HyFi products like H5 KIT) are plug and play, you don’t need to configure your PLC devices. In other words, your PLC devices will automatically build a powerline network with each other after they have been powered on.
Method 2: You can also use the pair buttons to build a powerline network. The steps are shown as below:
1) Press and hold the Pair button of one PLC device for 1 second, and this PLC device’s Power LED will start flashing.
2) Press and hold the Pair button of the other PLC device for 1 second within 2 minutes, and the other PLC device’s Power LED will start flashing too.
3) About 60 seconds later, the Powerline LED on both PLC devices will light up, which means the powerline network has been successfully built.
4) For more other PLC devices, you can press the pair button on one PLC device which is already in the existing powerline network, then press Pair button on the other PLC device which wants to be joined into the existing powerline network.
5) At last if the powerline LED of the other PLC device is on, then this PLC device has been successfully added into the powerline network.
The power LED and powerline LED are like this:
Method 3: You can also use the TP-LINK powerline utility to build a powerline network. The steps are shown as below:
1) Insert the CD or click here to download the TP-LINK powerline utility from the website, and install it.
2) Connect your computer directly to one PLC device. Then open the Utility and go to Status page. Set the Network Name manually like HomePlug and click Apply button.
3) Connect your computer to another PLC device and repeat the Step 2. The network name should be the same.
4) In this way, all your PLC devices will be in the same powerline network called HomePlug.
Why there are so many methods to build a powerline network?
We need to know the differences among the three methods.
The differences among these three methods are:
1. Use the method 1 to build the powerline network, the network name of this powerline network will be the default one which is HomePlugAV.
2. Use the method 2 to build the powerline network, the network name of this powerline network will be a random one, but not the default one.
The PLC devices will negotiate with each other during pairing operation. At last they will choose a random network name to build a powerline network.
3. Use the method 3 to build the powerline network, the network name of this powerline network will be the one you have set.
In conclusion, the key to build a powerline network is to set all PLC devices with a same network name. And the difference among the three methods to build a powerline network is the way to generate the same network name.
Why should every PLC device have the same network name?
Like I said above, the key to build a powerline network is to set all PLC devices with a same network name. But how does it work?
Based on HomePlug standards, all powerline communications between PLC devices are encrypted by default via 128bits AES encryption algorithm. The Network Name is exactly used to generate the secret key, and the secret key is used to encrypt the powerline communication. In other words, every PLC device has a network name, and every PLC device has the corresponding secret key.
So if PLC devices want to communicate with each other, then they need to own the same secret key to decode information sent from each other. This is why all PLC devices in the same powerline network should and must have the same network name namely the same secret key.
Since all TP-LINK PLC devices are plug and play, what is the meaning of other two methods (Method 2 & Method 3)?
Now we know there are three methods to build a powerline network. But since all TP-LINK PLC devices are plug and play, are the other two methods redundant?
Because HomePlugAV as a default Network Name is known by everyone, some hackers can try to acquire the secret key via this default Network Name. After the hackers have acquired the secret key, they can decode the encrypted powerline communication. So if you want a totally secured powerline network, method 2 and method 3 are absolutely the best way to build your powerline network.
Note: We must say “acquire the secret key via this default Network Name” is almost impossible. Because the Hash algorithm which is used to generate the secret key via network name is unpublished and totally confidential, so there isn’t even a small chance for the hackers to get the secret key.
Normally powerline network will be terminated by your home’s electricity meter. In other words, your powerline network belongs to your home and only your home. Your neighbors and other people can’t access to your powerline network. This will guarantee you a fully private and secured powerline network.
But sometimes some bad electricity meter will not completely end your powerline network, or sometimes there is no electricity meter at all. In this situation, if you and your neighbor’s powerline adapters use the same network name , maybe all powerline adapters will connect together, then your powerline network can be accessed by others.
But no worries, this kind of bad electricity meter I have mentioned above is very rare. Just in case, we suggest you use pair button or utility to change the default network name to make your powerline network more secured.
There are three methods to build a powerline network, and all these three methods are safe. You can use method 2 and method 3 to build a 100 percentage secured powerline network, just in case.
So if you want a simple way to use your TP-LINK PLC devices, you can just use them plug and play. By contrast, if you want a totally secured powerline network, you can use method 2 and method 3 to build your powerline network.
Last edited by Vincent; 04-24-2014 at 07:50.
Thank you for this thread.
I helped me a lot!
UNUNFIED vs CLONE SSID
Vincent, thanks for your thread, was very useful read it, and I have a question related with secure network.
I have several TP-LINK Powerline configurated at my house, and some of them wireless, like WPA281 and WPA2220
My actual configuration is an UNUNIFIED Network, this means, each Powerline device has its own SSID. As a result of this, we have 4 “SSID Networks” at my house. This kind of configuration, in my opinion, has PRO and CONS. The cons, you know, I must connect to different networks inside the house depending where I'm, the PRO: I have visibility in which Network (in consequence in which Powerline device) I’m connected at all times.
As you explained, Powerline has the capability to clone SSID at one-button-touch and voilà, the repeater (Powerline) copy the SSID/password from router. Again, the PRO and CONS are the opposite to my actual configuration (unique Network, but I don’t know in which device I’m connected in specific time (I presume this, if you know how please let me know)
The questions are:
Am I right with my reasoning ?
Exist another consideration (mainly networking performance) to be born in mind when choosing one method or the other one ?
Thanks in advance Vincent!
TL-WPA4220 can not act as a router; this makes it less secure
I maintian a wifi network for an 36-unit apartment. One unit has a cable modem, Linksys router, and TL-PA4010 adapter.
TL-WPA4220 are located in 10 other units. This network has been surprisingly stable, but it would be much more secure
easier to maintain and monitor if the TL-WPA4220 devices could act as routers. As simple access points,
a malicious app on a PC in one unit can bring down the entire network.
I had a perfect connection to a Sky TV box, using a pair of these > http://www.argos.ie/static/Product/p...referrer=COJUN
However, I just bought a second pair to connect a WiFi radio in another room, and I now have no signal at all!
My modem is working perfectly. It has 4 Ethernet ports. 2 computers use two of them just fine. I want to use the adapters in the other two. But, they won't work.
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How to build a secured powerline network
I was going to reply with "put Lucas Walker in it" haha that's how to build a good bracket car.
How to build a secured powerline ne
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