Product Updates

New wifi integration replaces RADIUS

Feb 17, 2013

We recently released the next generation of our wifi integration. The feature formerly known as RADIUS allows coworking spaces to restrict access to their wifi by requiring members to log in in order to get internet access. In addition it automatically checks people in on Cobot which generates statics about attendance and uses up day passes.

While our old RADIUS implementation worked okay we were never really happy with it. First of all, the technical implementation was much more complex than we would have liked, requiring the use of an OpenVPN gateway, us running our own RADIUS server etc. This resulted in a less than optimal experience for our customers, i.e. they had to contact us to get activated and the process on their side involved filling out 5 screens of forms. In addition, development on this feature was rather difficult, resulting in only a few improvements over time. One annoyance for example that we were never able to fix was the lack of specific error messages — when members were unable to log in the error message would not tell them why — it could be a system error, missing day passes, a not-yet-confirmed membership — you never knew.

Our second generation solution to the problem we simply call wifi integration — we are getting rid of RADIUS as well as OpenVPN. Instead we have developed our own version of the Pfsense captive portal software that now talks directly to our API. This also means that anyone not wanting to use a Pfsense router can write their own/adapt an existing captive portal to work with Cobot.

This feature is now open to everyone without contacting us. Setup has become simpler, we need to support less infrastructure, resulting in fewer errors and we can finally give users specific error messages should there be a problem.

If you are using our old RADIUS feature: we will leave it running for a while but plan to shut it down at some point in the future. Please upgrade to the new system whenever is convenient for you. Your coworkers will thank you. If you have any questions about the migration please contact support.

You can read about our wifi integration in our guides section.


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