The IP Zone software is the host on your local wireless communication island. In a public place you may be interested in a quick overview of available services at the particular location. Perhaps you want to check your travel route through a local map, or to get up to date with your electronic mail and calendar. You may also need to order some local services – like a taxi or a hotel room.
At hotels, airports and railroads you might want to do some work which requires connection to the Internet or to your enterprise network. Most laptops today are equiped with WLAN cards or have the Centrino processor that provides both LAN and Wireless LAN. Such devices are ready to connect to such hotspots and allow you to do your work.
The IP Zone software consists of three modules, the basic IP Zone Access Controller software, a publication system called the IP Zone Nomadic Portal and the IP Zone Authentication Server software which provides a means for user authentication management and billing management using both internal and external user databases and billing methods.
The IP Zone Server Software Solution
Birdstep IP Zone Server is a low risk, low initial investment, secure and scalable wireless access solution that allows operators and enterprises to deploy and maintain billable wireless access services. The open solution provides a high return on investment to your WLAN deployments. The IP Zone Server software solution contains three modules:
- Birdstep IP Zone Access Controller
- Birdstep IP Zone Authentication Server
- Birdstep Nomadic Portal Server
IP Zone Access Controller
The Access Controller is an easily installed, low-maintenance solution providing out-of-the-box operability, and runs on low-cost hardware. This module is a dynamic firewall and routing engine that controls authentication of potential users through various methods such as HTTP/HTTPS, 802.1x, Mobile IP, etc. It is standards-compliant and is based on widely available, proven software components such as Linux and the Apache web server.
IP Zone Authentication Server
The IP Zone Authentication Server software acts as an authentication and accounting server for a number of Access Controllers. Alternatively, the Authentication Server software may be installed on the same box as the Access Controller, and together they make up the standalone Birdstep IP Zone Server.
IP Zone Nomadic Portal
The IP Zone Nomadic Portal enables device-independent publication of local information by means of XML structured content. Information is always indexed and provides very fast information retrieval. To support a large range of terminal devices, information stored in the IP Zone Nomadic Portal is always transcoded to the terminal so that markup language and graphical content is adapted to each device. As an example, a Palm device will experience graphics easily viewable on a grayscale display, a PocketPC with color screen will receive simple HTML coded data and use icons specially made for a small color screen, and a Laptop will receive graphical-rich information displays with CSS and HTML/XML coded data.