Hi guys,

I'm (obviously) new to these forums. My primary computer runs Vista 64, my work computer dual boots XP and RHEL4.

Anyway.... I wanted to ask about creating a software based wireless access point for my home PC. This is what I've done so far:

Visited this page - https://help.ubuntu.com/community/Wi...essAccessPoint

Checked that my 2 wireless cards (its a long and slightly embarrassing story involving eBay) support master mode - they do (one is a Zydas 1211 and the other is based off the Broadcom 43xx chipset).

Installed Ubuntu Server in a virtual machine (VMWare Player). It installed fine, problem is that in a virtual machine, I have no access to my PCI devices so my Belkin (Broadcom 43xx) card wont work, and although the other is USB, Madwifi (drivers for it) dont work through USB and NDIS Wrappers dont support master mode (needed for an access point).

So a virtual machine isnt an option.

So, my remaining options are:

1. Install a Linux distro on my external 300GB HDD (come to think of it I could even install it directly into my machine, its a PATA drive). One question about this - can Vista read whatever ext3 partitions in case I'd still like to use it for storage? Alternatively I guess I could partition it something like 20GB for linux and the rest for storage in NTFS.
2. Install Ubuntu using Wubi (but what flavours of Ubuntu can I choose?).
3. Repartition my HDD and install a Linux distro there (can I do this without reformatting the whole thing?).

I'd also appreciate any advice as to what distro, or software package, or whatever that anyone might have. I dont mind installing Ubuntu server if it gets the job done, but I would prefer to have a GUI (I've got used to Windows!) in case I ever decide to use Linux for anything other than running my access point.

Why do I need a software access point? Our wireless router at home runs WPA. My Nintendo DS only supports WEP. Now, I'm not so keen to drop my entire household's security to WEP just so I can go online with my DS (I share with other people) so I thought the best thing to do was create my own software AP. If only I had done more research beforehand, I would have bought a cheap router and be done with it.

Anyway, if it makes any difference, my PC has 4GBs of RAM (hence I'd prefer 64 bit distros) and 2 ethernet ports (nforce mobo) and 2 wifi adapters (1 times blunder on eBay and another blunder to attempt to rectify it).

I'm at an intermediate level with Linux - I can install RPMs and (eventually) set Apache2 up, but I need constant reminding as to what the terminal commands are and where all the OS files are stored.

Anyway, thanks in advance, would appreciate any help or advice.