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I have an old Linksys BEFW11S4 that I am using for LAN file transfers when I am on the road and my phone has a 3G connection. It has an option for WEP security, but it defaults to converting a passphrase into a DeFacto hex key. Is there a way to have the router accept just the passphrase instead of a hex key? And I'm using WEP because it does not have options for WPA1/2

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up vote 2 down vote accepted

According to the manual for your product here:,0.pdf

Instead of manually entering WEP keys, you can enter a passphrase. This passphrase is used to generate one or more WEP keys. It is case-sensitive and should not be longer than 31 alphanumeric characters. (This Passphrase function is compatible with Linksys wireless products only and cannot be used with Windows XP Zero Configuration. If you want to communicate with non-Linksys wireless products or Windows XP Zero Configuration, make a note of the WEP key generated in the Key 1 field, and enter it manually in the wireless client.) After you enter the Passphrase, click the Generate button to create WEP keys.

So apparently passphrase WEP mode is only compatible with Linksys products. The manual also seems to mention WPA security mode though, so I recommend checking if you have the latest firmware on your router.

You can find more information here:

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Yeah, WEP is HEX keys. 10 character or 26 character. What you want is WPA, which may be available in newer/custom firmware. Otherwise you do what the rest of us used to do and keep the WEP key in a text file to copy and paste. – LilCodger Apr 5 '13 at 21:57
I've seen WEP passphrase support on other networks before. Is it just a router limitation? And also I have checked and the latest firmware does not include WPA support. – Wolfizen Apr 6 '13 at 3:20

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