Apple Airport Hotspot Authentication Using Radius

I am interested in creating a wireless network using Apple airport

base stations (the new ones that support RADIUS and 128 WEP – 2.1.1 I

believe). I would like to have these hotspots only connected to a

high-speed connection (i.e. DSL or Cable Modem) and not a computer.

These are *not* going to be connected to one another via lan or any

other device, just throught the ISP's internet connection. I am

interested in creating accounts whereby people can pay a very small

fee to use the network from any hotspot. My questions are these:

1) Do I need to have a computer on-site to do this sort of

authentication or is the airport base station enough?

2) Will a RADIUS server connected to the net somewhere else provide

the type of authentication/time tracking ability I am looking for

without being directly connected to the hotspots – in other words, are

the base stations 'smart' enough to query a server out on the net and

authenticate the user and provide the appropriate access, while only

being plugged into the cable/dsl modem.

3) If this is indeed possible, are there any *cheap* RADIUS server

packages/AAA software that will accomplish the task of allowing

certain users (ideally identified by username and password, not MAC)

to have access for the amount of time alloted.

4) If there are any other suggestions to achieve this result cheaply

(with or without Apple hardware), please let me know.

Thanks,

Northsider



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