Product Information

D-Link DSA-3100 Wireless Service Gateway

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September 01, 2004
Website:

http://www.d-link.com

Price

$499

RATING BREAKDOWN

  • Features:
    starstarstarstar
  • Ease of Use:
    starstarstarstar
  • Performance:
    starstarstar
  • Documentation:
    starstar
  • Support:
    starstarstarstar
  • Value for Money:
    starstarstarstarstar
  • Overall Rating:
    starstarstarstar

QUICK READ

  • Strengths:

    Very competitively priced gateway with impressive security functionality.

  • Weaknesses:

    Documentation not great, but adequate to get up and running.

  • Verdict:

    A good choice for departmental or branch office-level security, and a cost effective way of deploying small-scale WiFi hotspots.

D-Link's latest wireless security offering, the DSA-3100 Wireless Service Gateway, is a network access control system designed to manage authentication, authorization and accounting for all wired and wireless users accessing a corporate or public access WiFi network through the device. Features include IP plug and play, station isolation, traffic management and network policy enforcement.

D-Link is promoting it as a corporate tool and a device that can be installed in a commercial network to provide services such as a wireless hot spot. Given the rapid increase in WLAN areas, it is reasonable to expect that there will be a growing market for inexpensive, departmental-scale devices such as the DSA-3100 that can support and secure small-scale hot spots. With the DSA-3100, it is possible to create a pay-as-you-go public WiFi access service.

Out of the box, the gateway seemed surprisingly lightweight, but its pressed steel casing should make it resilient enough to cope with the trials of an office or café.

Installation was reasonably straightforward, but we welcomed the supporting quick set-up guide with its step-by-step instructions, photos, and even its slightly idiosyncratic English. This guide was not comprehensive, but did help us to get the device up and running.

Following the directions, we simply used the supplied cables to connect the managed network to the DSA-3100's Authentication port and plugged our trusted network into the device's Local Network Port. In this way, we set up a wireless access point on the authenticated side of the network.

After this, we needed to configure the system to authenticate any wireless clients tying to access this access point across the DSA-3100. The set up software for this is well-designed and allows administrators using the supplied web browser-based management interface to set up authenticated user lists and to access their rights once logged onto the network through the device.

The device can also be managed directly via a terminal session from a PC attached directly using the DSA-3100's console port.

On the support side, D-Link has a clear website which lists documentation for its products. For the DSA-3100, the quick-install guide ships as a hard copy with the device and there is a more detailed manual. The site also lists patch updates and downloads.

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