I am looking to see if it is possible to build a software only public WiFi application. A lot of WiFi router providers allow multiple people to use a single WiFi connection and provide services to allow billing etc. There are hardware solutions in this space (e.g. [url removed, login to view]) and we want to see if we can develop a software only solution that would run on the suppliers PC, but work with a regular router (e.g. Linksys 54g for example.) The router can of course be setup how we like, short of burning in a new ROM.
The simplest solution would be as follows:
PC + Router of supplier: Running some software app (Proxy server?) on PC and router configured in any way we like.
User1 tries to use WiFi signal from router. Proxy server sees User1 logging in. prompts them for password (via browser when they try and surf the web) and allows User1 to utilize the WiFi freely after the password is confirmed. The password confirmation can happen in the proxy server alone to start. If User1 enters the wrong password, they are not allowed to surf or use the internet.
To do this I believe that a combination of port forwarding (on the router) and a proxy server running on the local PC may be able to accomplish the job.
I am looking for someone with a hacker mentality would can think creatively to see if this is possible to do from a technical standpoint.
Do you think this is feasible. What overall approach would you take.