ZyXEL ZyAIR G-2000 Plus 802.11g Wireless 4-port Router


ZyXEL ZyAIR G-2000 Plus 802.11g Wireless 4-port Router

ZyXEL ZyAIR G-2000 Plus 802.11g Wireless 4-port Router
Summary802.11g router with built-in PEAP / RADIUS authentication
Pros• Supports WPA, WPA2 with PEAP / RADIUS authentication
• Rich feature set with many user-settable options
• Configurable via web and Telnet command line interfaces
Cons• Relatively slow routing throughput
• Web interface needs polish
• Firewall configuration harder than it should be

A few months ago, ZyXEL released an updated version of its G-2000 wireless router. The new product, labeled the ZyXEL G-2000 Plus, replaces the earlier G-2000 model we reviewed last year. The Plus' main claim to fame is the addition of a built-in Protected Extensible Authentication Protocol (PEAP) Remote Authentication Dial-In User Service (RADIUS) server. What makes this special? To quote the press release:

"The ZyAIR G-2000 Plus with built-in PEAP RADIUS server enables companies to implement WPA-Enterprise providing each user their own unique username and password. ... With WPA-Enterprise, the ZyAIR G-2000 Plus strengthens security and simplifies administration so now awarding or revoking access to users is effortless. In addition, ZyAIR G-2000 Plus can act as a PEAP RADIUS server for other APs on the network."

What this basically means is that the G-2000 Plus can perform secure user authentication as well as encryption of wireless traffic. I'll go into a bit more detail on this later.

Other than its PEAP RADIUS server, the G-2000 Plus is like many other wireless routers these days. It's a four port 10/100 switch (Figure 2), an 802.11b/g wireless access point, and a firewall / router all rolled into one. It features the usual web-driven configuration interface, along with a few niceties such as simple content filtering and remote logging.

Included with the product is a printed "Quick Start Guide" and "User's Guide" on CD. It's easy to see why a printed version of the user's guide isn't included with the product as it's 430 pages long and quite detailed.