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Networking in GNU/Linux

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michuk's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-20

I've been working on a new page in the "First steps" section of PolishLinux.org that is supposed to cover the networking in GNU/Linux. I want it presented in a way that can be understood by a person who has always used Windows before.

I wrote this introductory page: http://polishlinux.org/first-steps/networking/ but I'm stuck on the pages specific to each technology. I'd like to have a single page for each network connection type (like grps, wifi, modems, cable or dsl) that tells the user a few crucial things about the technology itself, ways of using it in Linux, pointing to a few external resources where the problem is adressed in detail.

Do you think this approach is reasonable? I'd like to hear your feedback both about the main page and the technology-specific pages (of which only the WiFi page is kind of ready: http://polishlinux.org/first-steps/networking/wifi/).

Borys

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04
Well I am using an usb EDGE

Well I am using an usb EDGE modem (EDGE is based on GPRS) provided by my ISP and it works fine under GNU/Linux. The modem may be provided by other ISPs around Europe or even world. It is produced by Zadacom which has its picture and specifications on the site.

It is usually recognized by the system and the device node for it is created on /dev/ttyUSB0 .

All you need then is a proper chat script in /etc/ppp/chatscripts/edge and a proper peers file in /etc/ppp/peers/edge upon which you can connect using the command: pppd call edge as root (or sudo).

The chat script I use is as follows:

TIMEOUT 20
ABORT BUSY
ABORT "NO CARRIER"
ABORT VOICE
ABORT "NO DIALTONE"
""
ATZ OK
at+cgdcont=1,"ip","data.vip.hr" OK
"ATD*99#" CONNECT

The "data.vip.hr" is an access point. I doubt if you put the exact same info as above that you'll be able to connect. You'll need to set it up with infos provided by your ISP.

The peers script is:

/dev/ttyUSB0 230400
crtscts
user "29545"
password "29545"
debug
noauth
connect '/usr/sbin/chat -v -f /etc/ppp/chatscripts/edge'
nodetach
noipx
usepeerdns
ipcp-accept-local
local
novj
novjccomp
nobsdcomp
disconnect '/usr/sbin/chat -v -f /etc/ppp/chatscripts/edge-hang'
defaultroute
usepeerdns

The user and password above are the same and not really secret. Those numbers will also depend on your ISP.

The edge modem has a SIM card in it which is your unique SIM card and basically the only unique thing identifying your connection account to the ISP. This is why there are no unique passwords in these scripts. It is, of course, connected via USB. The kernel module for this modem is ftdi_sio.

The infos can be found on wikipedia for GPRS and EDGE. It's basically wireless, but it's not the same thing as wifi. These kinds of connections are vaguely broadband, though not necessarily very high speed. My ISP charges per megabyte so it is not really cheap either. It is good though if you're in an area where there is no other broadband alternative to use in combination with satellite DSL.

Satellite DSL is one-way, only download, and can be quite high speed, but with a rather high lag. It goes over a satellite dish hooked to a DVB card. DVB cards are also supported by GNU/Linux. One of the most popular cards is SkyStar2 which I use. The device node is usually under /dev/dvb. With this kind of card you can watch satellite television OR download from the net. Both wont work at the same time. I use it for download.

Since it is only one-way, it is used in combination with a main connection, which can be anything two-way from a plain dial up modem to the EDGE USB modem described above. You connect with that and then use a proxy to direct download traffic over satellite at greater speeds. The proxy used is called tqrecv and I downloaded from some place I can't remember right now (search engine should help with that). I can provide it to anyone who needs it. It comes in binary form and without a license so it appears mostly like an abandonware. (The situation is probably different on windows because the DVB card comes with a CD with required software.)

In any case it works. The modules used for a SkyStar card are b2c2_flexcop and b2c2_flexcop_pci. Of course it also uses dvbtune and dvbnet software and needs appropriate DVB support modules as well (dvb_core, dvb_pll AFAIK).

Anyway, hopefully some of this info helps.

michuk's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-20
GPRS
libervisco wrote:

Well I am using an usb EDGE modem (EDGE is based on GPRS) provided by my ISP and it works fine under GNU/Linux. The modem may be provided by other ISPs around Europe or even world. It is produced by Zadacom which has its picture and specifications on the site.

I just configured GRPS via USB during the weekend Smiling
What you write is cool and if you don't mind I may use it for the article about GPRS/EDGE.

What I'm wondering however is what is the exact level of detail we would like to have in this First steps section. I feel kind of uneasy with putting there all the configuration scripts for different purposes, like connecting to mobile pohones' modems via bluetooth, usb or irda, etc. Perhaps it would be enough to point the main things one needs to know about configuring these kind of connections and just link to full articles that describe it in detail. I may write an article about using GPRS/EDGE in Ubuntu, so this could be the kind of detailed article we would like to link to.

And one more thing about the copying form Wikipedia thing. I don't feel this is a good idea in general, since lots of Wikipedia content is very technical, e.g. the description of ISDN is. I guess that it may be too technical and complicated to put it directly on PolishLinux.org. What do others think?

libervisco's picture
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Joined: 2006-05-04
I don't mind at all. I

I don't mind at all. I agree with you.. best to make it just a basic introduction with links to more details. It's basically just important to let them know it is supported, example of hardware that is supported and the way they can get it, just putting them in the right direction.

About wikipedia articles, they could simply be used as a source of information in general to help you put something together, but you can extract only the more important basic things from it, not necessarily much of the technical detail.

free-zombie's picture
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Joined: 2006-03-08
be sure to note that if you

be sure to note that if you are using a DSL/cable/whatever router via ethernet, you probably won't need any configuration as most use DHCP.

michuk's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-20
WiFi article updated

I updated the article about WiFi. Added some info about WEP and WPA support, general info on configuring WiFi in the command line and some links to external articles.

http://polishlinux.org/first-steps/networking/wifi/

michuk's picture
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Joined: 2006-08-20
cable connection in Linux

I wrote another part of the Networking HOWTO, about cable connection: http://polishlinux.org/first-steps/networking/cable/
Any comments how to enhence it are welcome!

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