Server Fault is a question and answer site for system and network administrators. Join them; it only takes a minute:

Sign up
Here's how it works:
  1. Anybody can ask a question
  2. Anybody can answer
  3. The best answers are voted up and rise to the top

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!

share|improve this question

migrated from May 12 '10 at 0:58

This question came from our site for computer enthusiasts and power users.

The term you want to search for is captive portal.

share|improve this answer
This would be better suited as a comment. – heavyd May 11 '10 at 18:56

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. (

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

And of course if you want to drop some cash you could use a Nomadix appliance. (

share|improve this answer

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.

share|improve this answer

Your Answer


By posting your answer, you agree to the privacy policy and terms of service.