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I would like to be able to serve a local webpage (on a LAN) when someone connects to a WiFi network. This happens quite often in libraries, cafes etc, so i'm sure it can be done, but I have no idea how and can't seem to find much through searching the web. That, and my very limited networking knowledge means I'm hoping you guys can point me in the right direction. Many thanks!

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migrated from superuser.com May 12 '10 at 0:58

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3 Answers

The term you want to search for is captive portal.

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This would be better suited as a comment. –  heavyd May 11 '10 at 18:56
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You can use m0n0wall to create a captive portal/walled garden. It's free to download and has a good amount of documentation for setup. (http://m0n0.ch/wall)

If you need some more advanced routing (like redirecting outbound SMTP connections) you can use pfSense which is a fork of the m0n0wall project. (http://www.pfsense.com)

And of course if you want to drop some cash you could use a Nomadix appliance. (http://www.nomadix.com)

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This can be achieved via combination of the following:

  1. Deny/refuse/interrupt all connections to non-whitelisted IP's (your web server)
  2. Intercept and respond to all HTTP/HTTPS requests with a redirect to your web server

Your webserver should include some action to authorize the user, at which point the user is no longer subject to the above behavior.

There are several commercial products to achieve this behavior, but you can also roll your own. I'm not aware of any free, OTS solutions, but I bet you can find one.

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