[Cu-wireless] Ideas about a bootp server

Ralph Johnson johnson at cs.uiuc.edu
Thu Mar 20 17:10:37 CST 2003

Mdhur Nigam and I have been thinking about how to give a router a private
key so that it could set up a VPN to a distant site.  Our current solution
is to have one or more of the machines in the house running a bootp server,
and for the router to ask it for its "boot" and to get the private key in
return.  This is not a perfect solution.  The biggest problem is that
someone can break into your house, stick a machine with a bootp client on it
on your network, and steal your private key.  But otherwise it is pretty
good.  In general, the only time the router will need a private key is if
one of the machines in your house is working.  It won't need a key if all it
is going do to is to pass the message on.  So, if you turn off your bootp
server and go on vacation and a power surge resets your router, it won't
harm anything.

I am wondering what else could be handled this way.  Could we provide an IP
address with a bootp server?  The radio channel to use?  My current thought
is that IP address is OK, but radio channel is not, because a router always
needs to know its radio channel, but not its IP address unless traffic is
directed to it.  Or will other routers need to know its IP address to route
traffic through it?

-Ralph Johnson

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