Page 1 of 1

Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel netwo

Posted: Wed Jul 24, 2013 2:58 pm
by K9EZ
I go from hotel to hotel. Some of them only give you one MAC address that can log in. I typically use my Mac if there is a wired network where I can share the wired part out to the wireless. But I would love to find a smaller, less expensive box that will allow me to log in to a hotel network through a browser. Is there such a thing?

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Sat Jul 27, 2013 11:35 am
by Baylink
You're looking for a "AP Client" or "Wireless Bridge".

You can buy those for, say, $100ish, or you can grab a WRT54G and install DD-WRT on it (if you're that kinda guy) cause it will not only repeat, it will repeat to wireless.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 11:45 am
by Deep Thought
Biggest problem is most hotel systems have a login page where you have to accept their TOS to get past the wall and there are no "standard" units that can be configured to do that automagically. I've had some success cloning the MAC address of my laptop into a portable router so the system thinks the lappy is still hooked in but you have to go through that process every time you change locations and also every 24 hours or whatever the system timeout for the login is.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 12:08 pm
by Baylink
Crap; yeah. Hadn't thought about that. It's not going to know, though, is it, that you're behind your own router, as long as the router is proxying DNS to wherever DHCP tells it to -- that being how most such walled gardens are constructed...?

You would just need to pick as your "hijack me to login" page something you don't mind being cached to a whacky IP behind the router...

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:00 pm
by Deep Thought
Baylink wrote:Crap; yeah. Hadn't thought about that. It's not going to know, though, is it, that you're behind your own router, as long as the router is proxying DNS to wherever DHCP tells it to -- that being how most such walled gardens are constructed...?
My experience has been that they tend to filter by MAC address so it doesn't matter what you do with DNS or proxies--you're going to hit the wall with any sort of request (that includes email, which just barfs on its shoes when that happens) until the MAC is validated through the sign-in page and the router allows traffic to pass through. It's pretty much the same way parental controls work on a home router...nothing particularly complicated. They just add an automated page which effectively puts that computer on the exception list when you agree to the terms. Some do rudimentary validation via room number and guest name or a random code.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 2:30 pm
by Baylink
Oh sure. My point was that there isn't anything that precludes that being done by *one of the devices behind an AP client/bridge*; the bridge *itself* needn't be the device which does it, as long as it gets done.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 4:17 pm
by techboywi
Just to re-iterate whats already been said, and as speaking as one who works for a company that builds and supports guest Internet in hotels. Our company, and others I'm familiar with do some kind of filtering by MAC address. We use firewall rules to do it. One firewall chain for pre-auth and one for post. I've not heard of hotels limiting you to just one device, and it doesn't make much sense to me to limit people in that way. Some of our hotels would make you pay per device (for those that charge you), while others will charge you a set price for a specified number of devices.

The industry seems to be generally moving away from wired in guest rooms, and onto wireless, since most guests are coming in using mostly wireless devices.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Mon Jul 29, 2013 9:15 pm
by Deep Thought
techboywi wrote:I've not heard of hotels limiting you to just one device, and it doesn't make much sense to me to limit people in that way.
You aren't usually limited to one device, but each one has to authenticate separately. That's where the problem is for devices that don't have a way to do that.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Tue Jul 30, 2013 5:48 am
by Dale H. Cook
Deep Thought wrote:You aren't usually limited to one device, but each one has to authenticate separately.
That is what I generally see, and I normally spend 50+ nights each year in hotel rooms. I normally have both the XP laptop and the Android tablet authenticated (the tablet is handy for a quick browse while watching TV in bed.) I haven't yet stayed any place where I could not run both devices at the same time. In some places, though, I have to re-authenticate more often than I prefer because the lease time is rather short.
Deep Thought wrote:Some do rudimentary validation via room number and guest name or a random code.
The hotel I am in at the moment is part of a chain that uses authentication of the form "LLLnnnn," where "LLL" is an abbreviation of the hotel name and "nnnn" is a four-digit code that changes weekly. The chain in which I spend most of my other road-warrior nights uses "nnnLLLL," where "nnn" is the room number and "LLLL" are the first four letters of the guest's surname. In either chain I can authenticate multiple devices.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Sat Jun 21, 2014 12:38 am
by dbuckley
K9EZ wrote:But I would love to find a smaller, less expensive box that will allow me to log in to a hotel network through a browser. Is there such a thing?
There is indeed, what you want is a TP Link TL-WR702N.

Plug it in, and on your wireless device, surf to the login page. You'll authentivcate as the MAC address of the little access point, and all your devices behind it will be hidden behind the access point MAC.

Image

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Sat Jun 21, 2014 7:35 am
by Baylink
I have, queued up, a project to build a battery powered portable wifi natrouter with onboard storage, out of this spiffy Raspberry Pi I bought.

You'd associate all your mobile devices to *it*, phone, tablet, laptops, whathaveyou, and then use it to attach to the local WLAN when you go places. This allows you to share the attached storage, probably a small SSD (128GB is "small", now :-) amongst your personal devices, without exposing whatever files are on the drive to the people on the WLAN you're visiting. You will be double-NATted to the outside world, but in this context that will rarely matter.

As noted above, once you've associated the widget to an access point with a walled garden, you'd authenticate yourself to the walled garden from any convenient and compatible device, and then all your devices should be able to get out.

[ And no, I have no illusion this idea is original, but none of the commercial wireless storage modules do the NAT routing; they just attach to the WLAN with you, which seems useless to me for the Road Warrior use case. ]

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Sun Jun 22, 2014 3:22 pm
by Deep Thought
Pretty sure that TP-Link device does what you described plus a bunch of other things too...for about $20.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Tue Jun 24, 2014 5:18 pm
by Baylink
I've just looked at TP-Link's website, and nothing in that category springs instantly to eye; did someone mention a model number and I missed it?

[ Edit: Sorry; that post came in while I wasn't looking. ]

And now that I have looked: no; that won't do what I suggested. It has no storage server, and no battery. It probably *will* solve the OPs problem, of course.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 10:26 pm
by Deep Thought
Why do you need shared NAS on a temporary hotel link? Seems unnecessarily complex.

Re: Wireless Internet access point that can log into Hotel n

Posted: Thu Jun 26, 2014 10:31 pm
by Baylink
I want my files available to all my devices (at least 4) everywhere I go; it's the hotel part that's the red herring here.

Sent from my SPH-L720