Wireless Network Info Card

Like any good geek, I locked down my wireless network a bit after I set it up. I’m running WPA2, and the password/key was generated with pwqgen, for something sufficiently secure but semi-memorable. I disabled SSID broadcast. My router automatically generated a weird name, which I presume to be two random dictionary words mashed together. More for congestion-avoidance than security, I also run the router on 5 GHz instead of 2.4 GHz, which limits me to 802.11a and 802.11n. This seems to work with most everything (except for my HTC Inspire cell phone).

The problem is that when people come over, it’s really tiring to hand them a sheet with the network name and password/key on it, and still have to explain:

  • My network isn’t any of the ones that pop up on your wireless device, because I turned SSID Broadcast off. You have to manually add it.
  • It’s WPA2, not WEP. It’s also Personal, not Enterprise, so there’s no username prompt.
  • The name is weird, because it was auto-generated. Stop asking what it means; it means nothing.
  • It’s only on 5 GHz.

So I decided I wanted something more than a sheet of notebook paper, but also something that people could “get” pretty quickly. I grabbed a photo of the iOS network setup, guessed that Helvetica Neue was a close-enough match for the font, and did a little Photoshop manipulation, ending up with this:

(These values are randomized and not my actual credentials.)

My plan (once I get my printer set up and working) is to print a couple copies of this on thick cardstock like an index card and keep them handy for when guests want to use my network.

Photoshop template here [720KB, .psd], if you’d like.

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