Fiber optic access is commonly considered to be the ultimate solution for broadband connectivity. It provides virtual unlimited bandwidth and enables simultaneous delivery of multiple services.

The IEEE 802.1X standard defines a client-server-based access control and authentication protocol that limits unauthorized clients from connecting to a LAN through publicly accessible ports. The authentication server authenticates each client connected to a switch port before making available any services offered by the switch or the LAN.

Until the client is authenticated, 802.1X access control allows only Extensible Authentication Protocol over LAN (EAPOL) traffic through the port to which the client is connected. After authentication is successful, the client can access the network.