Microsoft's latest operating system, Windows XP, provides support for 802.1x (specifically EAP-TLS and EAP Message Digest 5 [MD5]).
Thus, a variety of EAP authentication protocols can be used to authenticate users in today's WLAN networks.
Appendix B provides instructions for configuring EAP-TLS using demo certificates (for proof of concept testing).
EAP provides a standard mechanism for supporting various authentication methods over wired and wireless networks.
A proposal jointly submitted to the IEEE by Cisco Systems, Microsoft, and other organizations introduced an end-to-end framework using 802.1X and the EAP to provide this enhanced functionality.
Central to this proposal are two main elements: •EAP allows wireless client adapters, which may support different authentication types, to communicate with different back-end servers such as Remote Access Dial-In User Service (RADIUS) •IEEE 802.1X, a standard for port-based network access control To support all popular operating systems, Cisco employees designed and implemented Lightweight Extensible Authentication Protocol (LEAP)—a network-EAP protocol based on 802.1x authentication framework—on Cisco Aironet WLAN products and solutions.
The network access server is aware only of when the EAP authentication process starts and when it ends.