Wireless Products
Intel® Wi-Fi Products
What Is a Certificate and How Does It Apply to Me?

Certificate: As it relates to Wi-Fi network security, a certificate is a digital identifier used to authenticate a machine or user to a network. Both may be required for some authentication methods. A certificate contains information about who owns the certificate, certificate issuer, a unique serial number or other unique identification, expiration dates, and encrypted information that can be used to verify the information held within the certificate. Such authentication is more secure than a username/password combination.

Certificate authority: A certificate authority (CA) is an authority (security server) in a network, or a third-party entity, that issues and manages security credentials and public keys for message encryption and decryption. As part of a public key infrastructure (PKI), a CA checks with a registration authority (RA) to verify information provided by the requestor of a digital certificate. If the RA verifies the requestor's information, the CA can then issue a certificate.

What does all of this mean to me as a home or small-office user?

Certificates are most commonly employed in corporate environments or other large institutions possessing a large network infrastructure. Home or small-office users typically use manually configured pre-shared keys or passphrases, instead of certificates, to authenticate and associate with access points (APs) or broadband Wi-Fi routers. APs and routers then connect to the Internet via a DSL, cable or other types of modems.

This applies to:

Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N + WiMAX 6250
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6200
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6205
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6205 For Desktop
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6230
Intel® Centrino® Advanced-N 6235
Intel® Centrino® Ultimate-N 6300
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N + WiMAX 6150
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 100
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 1000
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 1030
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 105
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 130
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 135
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2200
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2200 For Desktop
Intel® Centrino® Wireless-N 2230
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 3160
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-AC 7260 for Desktop
Intel® Dual Band Wireless-N 7260
Intel® PRO/Wireless 2200BG Network Connection
Intel® PRO/Wireless 2915ABG Network Connection
Intel® PRO/Wireless 3945ABG Network Connection
Intel® WiFi Link 1000
Intel® WiFi Link 5300 and Intel® WiFi Link 5100 products
Intel® WiMAX/WiFi Link 5350 and Intel® WiMAX/WiFi Link 5150 products
Intel® Wireless WiFi Link 4965AGN
Intel® Wireless-N 7260

Solution ID: CS-025319
Last Modified: 01-Oct-2014
Date Created: 27-Dec-2006
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