Radius Improvements: No more captive portal

Nov 09, 2010

Cobot’s Radius feature allows a coworking space to control access to their wireless network. This way they can automatically enforce membership limitations (coworker is only paying for x days per week/month) and the usage of day passes, and this also results in cobot collecting statistics, e.g. about coworker attendance. In short, we think this is pretty useful.

The only downside so far has been that your coworkers now have to log into a captive portal every day. Depending on their tolerance levels this can get pretty annoying, especially when they have more than one wifi device and have to log in with each of them. In our own space we got an increasing amount of complaints to disable the captive portal, but then again we really didn’t want to lose all the benefits.

And here’s the solution: PFSense (the routing software that we recommend) has a little checkbox called Enable RADIUS MAC authentication. After enabling this checkbox your router will try to log your coworkers in using their computer’s MAC address, only showing the captive portal if the MAC address isn’t found. And since yesterday cobot supports exactly that.

When a coworker logs into the captive portal we store her MAC address, and the next time she opens up her laptop it just works. Amazing :)

As usual you can find a step buy step guide in our help section (scroll to the bottom).


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