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The IEEE 8021x is a nationally-approved standard that became first accepted on October 25 2001 as IEEE Std 8021X-2001 It is a method of port-based network access control that provides an authentication mechanism for devices connecting to either a Local Area Network LAN or Wireless Local Area Network WLAN A key characteristic to using 8021x is that without proper authorization no traffic is allowed through that port of a switch or no connection will be made with the wireless device Since the time of the initial release there have been two other versions 8021X-2004 and 8021X-2010 which have come out adding new features 8021X-2010 is the latest version and this standard is still in practice todayOne of the main points of why 8021x was first created was to keep unwanted host computers off the wired and wireless networks of an organization If 8021x is implemented onto either youre wired andor wireless network it affects everyone who is connected Basically everyone who wants to connect to the network has to first authenticate themselves and there is a particular process for authenticating First things we are going to cover how a wired user or supplicant would connect to the network When a supplicant first powers on their computer and logs in the switching device or authenticator that they are connected are previously configured to use 8021x authentication in order to gain access to the port so at this moment the port is only accepting what is known as Extensible Authentication Protocol EAP traffic which is the encapsulation that is used by 8021x When the switch port detects any sort of traffic it will enter the initialization phase of the authentication process which only accepts the EAP traffic and everything else is automatically dropped After that the switch enters the initiation phase where it periodically transmits what are called EAP-Request Identity frames These frames are picked up by
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