14 Replies Latest reply: Oct 15, 2007 11:00 AM by Duane
oscarhobson Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
I'm trying to set up an airport extreme base and a powerbook g4 with an airport extreme card to use wpa2. The base's wireless security setting is set to WPA2 Personal, but when I try to access the base from the powerbook, the only wireless security setting choice is WPA Personal. If I use this choice and type in the password, I can connect to the base just fine. I'm wondering 1) How can I connect via WPA if the base is set to WPA2? and 2) How come the powerbook won't show a choice for WPA2?
I'm new to wireless so please forgive my ignorance.
The base station firmware is 7.1. I'm using Windows XP SP2 with Airport Utility 5.1 to set up the base.
The powerbook is running 10.3.9, and the card firmware is 404.2

Thanks for any help you can give.

powerbook g4, Mac OS X (10.3.9)
  • 1. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (48,245 points)
    Hello oscarhobson. Welcome to the Apple Discussions!


    Here are the minimum requirements for WPA2...
    o 802.11g AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBS) w/firmware 5.7, or
    o 802.11n AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBSn) w/firmware 7.0, or
    o AirPort Express Base Station (AX) w/firmware 6.3
    o AirPort Extreme clients running Mac OS X 10.3 or later
    o AirPort for Mac or AirPort for Windows 4.2 or AirPort Utility 5.0


    Only the PowerBook G4s with 1 MHz or greater processors use 802.11g AirPort Extreme cards. Versions before then used the original 802.11b AirPort card which does not support WPA2.
  • 2. Re: not getting wpa2?
    oscarhobson Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Thanks for the reply. It would seem I meet all the requirements you gave save one - I have
    an 802.11n AirPort Extreme Base Station (AEBSn) w/firmware 7.1 (MA073LL/A Model No A1143),
    an AirPort Extreme client (powerbook G4)running Mac OS X 10.3.9,
    and I have an 802.11g Airport Extreme card (M8881LL/A Model No A1026) in the Powerbook. However, the Powerbook has only an 867MHz processor.
    Is the powerbook only using the card in 802.11b "mode" or something? Is there some place I can look that would tell me that?
    How come the Powerbook can connect to the base using WPA when the base is set to WPA2 personal?

    Thanks for the help.
  • 3. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (48,245 points)
    However, the Powerbook has only an 867MHz processor.



    Then it is only capable of working with the 802.11b AirPort card that doesn't support WPA2.


    Is the powerbook only using the card in 802.11b "mode" or something?



    It is ONLY capable of 802.11b mode.


    Is there some place I can look that would tell me that?



    First, here are the PowerBook G4 specifications. You can look up your exact model, by entering your G4's serial number.


    I'm not as familiar with OS X 10.3.9, but like the 10.4 versions, it has the System Profiler utility, you can use that utility to verify which AirPort card is installed.
  • 4. Re: not getting wpa2?
    oscarhobson Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Sorry to be a pain, but I guess that's why I'm confused. The card is in fact an Airport Extreme 802.11g card. The Powerbook G4 specifications for my serial # state:

    Built-in antennas and expansion slot for optional 54-Mbps AirPort Extreme Card2 (based on 802.11g draft specification; IEEE 802.11b Wi-Fi certified)

    so shouldn't this be capable of WPA2?
  • 5. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (48,245 points)
    No problem at all. Actually, I missed that there is a particular model of the PowerBook G4 w/the 867 MHz processor that is AirPort Extreme card compatible...the M8760LL/A.


    Yes, if you have verified that you have an AirPort Extreme card installed, then it SHOULD support WPA2. The only thing I can think of is the firmware version of your AirPort Extreme card. I just looked at mine, and it was 1.1.9.3 when I looked in the System Profiler...but I am running OS X 10.4.10. Yours may well be different with your version of the OS.
  • 6. Re: not getting wpa2?
    oscarhobson Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    The card is definitely an Airport Extreme - I just bought it and installed it. The firmware of the card was 404.2 when I started on this quest. I did software update and it's now saying 405.1

    Is there a list somewhere of the firmware versions for the card ? I have struggled to find something comprehensive on the Apple site.

    Any other suggestions?

    Thanks for your help.
  • 7. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Tesserax Level 8 Level 8 (48,245 points)
    I believe you have the latest firmware update before you would have to update the OS X version. I didn't find a list specifically for AirPort cards, but for AirPort software and AirPort base station firmware.
  • 8. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Duane Level 10 Level 10 (117,955 points)
    Is there a list somewhere of the firmware versions for the card ?


    No. The firmware is automagically updated and there is no user notice nor intervention.
  • 9. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Jonathan Pool Level 1 Level 1 (40 points)
    So, is the Network utility in System Preferences ignorant of whether the PowerBook supports WPA2? It offers Personal and Enterprise WPA2 as options and then appears to try to connect to the Airport Extreme Base Station for about 30 seconds, before finally displaying the message "The wireless network "..." does not support the requested encryption method." Why wouldn't the utility refuse to offer these options in the first place when run on hosts that don't allow them to work?
  • 10. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Duane Level 10 Level 10 (117,955 points)
    That isn't really a utility. It is merely a way to change the settings. Therefore all the options supported by your Mac are listed regardless of the network capability.
  • 11. Re: not getting wpa2?
    pbshoe Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Ok, I followed this thread to the end, but never saw a resolution. I am running into the same problem on my network: I recently purchased the new Airport extreme base station (to get that .n support), and have it working fine with my Windows, MacBook, and MacBook Pro machines (I haven't tried my new iMac, but it should be fine as well). However, trying to get it onto my son's lampshade iMac has been a problem. Since I installed this new base station, I haven't been able to get it to connect to the network. He has an airport extreme card, he has 10.3.9, but just not able to connect with WPA2. When I used Transitional it was fine, but I can't use that protocol right now (having to do with some Roku problems).

    So, how exactly do I upgrade the firmware of the card? if you say "automagically", I'll have to say "well, why hasn't it automagically updated it yet?"...
  • 12. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Duane Level 10 Level 10 (117,955 points)
    If he has installed all of the updates recommend in Software Update, then his card has all the latest firmware updates (if there were any to be had).

    Are you certain that his iMac G4 has an AirPort Extreme card? If the iMac has a processor speed of 700 or 800 MHz it does not. Those have the older 802.11b AirPort card and are NOT capable of WPA2.
  • 13. Re: not getting wpa2?
    pbshoe Level 1 Level 1 (0 points)
    Yes, I looked at System Info and it specifically says AirPort Extreme. His computer is the iMac 17-inch 1GHz, so that is compatible, right? I would presume if I shoved the extreme card into a computer that wouldn't accept it, it wouldn't accept it (or work), right?
  • 14. Re: not getting wpa2?
    Duane Level 10 Level 10 (117,955 points)
    Other than OS 10.3, the only other requirement is that the AirPort SW version is 3.2 or higher.

    That iMac is compatible with the AirPort Extreme card.

    I would presume if I shoved the extreme card into a computer that wouldn't accept it, it wouldn't accept it (or work), right?


    You would think so but many people have succeeded and as a result experienced motherboard damage.