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 Forum index » Advanced Topics » Hardware » Networking » Dialup
The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems
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aahhaaa


Joined: 06 Oct 2005
Posts: 341
Location: Lower Michigan, North America

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 11:18    Post subject:  The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

While trying to setup a DUM with the Puppy Wizard, I got a screen which told me I had a SMARTPCI11562 56K Rev 3 then I was supposed to download the Smartlink modem package from ibiblio.org , and install it with PupGet ...

Broadband addicts seem unaware what a stumper this can be.

First, there is no apparent link to such a package at ibiblio. Second, if a newbie could download directly, they wouldn't need to download it. Third, even experienced home computer users might have installed a modem once every 3 years or so.

In which case, there should be some instructions for transferring it during a Live CD session.

This is not Puppy's fault- the entire Linux community snobs at dial-up folks.
Some people you might not expect are stuck with it- like most of those who grow the food you eat . Believe it or not, we really need computers in the boonies too, for stuff like weather predictions and crop spraying.

Why isn't there a website or forum devoted to solving Linux dial-up probs? It could query the modem just like Puppy does- I got a hex string and ID from the wizard- that could launch a detailed HOWTO customized for the specific computer. Or even just say 'Known not to work' & give a couple models that would.

This part of things shouldn't still be such an uphill struggle, guys... Wink
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11068
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 11:29    Post subject:  

Amen to that, brother.
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puppian


Joined: 18 Jul 2005
Posts: 538
Location: PuppyLand

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 15:10    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

aahhaaa wrote:
First, there is no apparent link to such a package at ibiblio. Second, if a newbie could download directly, they wouldn't need to download it.

Agree. It's neccessary to tell newbie which file to download. It would be great too if the needed package can come with puppy (not really that large in size Smile). Asking someone who doesn't have a connection to download something can be annoying...

aahhaaa wrote:
Why isn't there a website or forum devoted to solving Linux dial-up probs? It could query the modem just like Puppy does- I got a hex string and ID from the wizard- that could launch a detailed HOWTO customized for the specific computer. Or even just say 'Known not to work' & give a couple models that would.

We have something here:
http://www.goosee.com/puppy/wikka/PuppyHardware
I think "a detailed HOWTO customized for the specific computer" would be cool, thou I have no idea how to implement it.

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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11068
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 16:30    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

puppian wrote:
...I think "a detailed HOWTO customized for the specific computer" would be cool, thou I have no idea how to implement it.

Perhaps something like the Symantec website that inspects your computer for viruses, or the Microsoft update website that inspects your computer for stolen Microsoft software? Twisted Evil The computer would already need to be connected to the internet in order for the website to inspect it, which would make such an 'online wizard' redundant, wouldn't it?
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rarsa


Joined: 29 May 2005
Posts: 3053
Location: Kitchener, Ontario, Canada

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 17:22    Post subject:  

Quote:
It would be great too if the needed package can come with puppy (not really that large in size ). Asking someone who doesn't have a connection to download something can be annoying

While agreeing with the idea that it should be as easy as possible for a new user to set-up a connection, I have some personal comments:

- "There is no such thing as a free lunch": There needs to be a tradeoff between functionality and size. This is as true buying a car or house as it is selecting an operating system/Distro.
Puppy strives to keep it's size small. Making it an "easy" download for dialup users. It includes the most commonly used drivers for networking and dialup.
- "Not really that large in size" for each of the aditional packages adds up really quick.

I understand your frustration but I think that you can understand the conundrum.

I think that in your case there is a way for helping the next guy after you: Advise Barry about the missing package. It's most likelly an oversight.

Quote:
Broadband addicts seem unaware what a stumper this can be.
This issue is no different regardless of the connection: Dialup, broadband, wireless, etc, will face the same issue. If your device is not supported 'out of the box' by puppy you will need to download the appropriate driver. Actually Here the connundrum materializes perfectly:
Broadband users would not mind downloading a big ISO that includes as many drivers as possible. It is the dialup users who would suffer downloading something that includes all kinds of drivers required by hardware they don't own. You cannot have all the drivers in a small download. I think that now you'll agree that it's better to include an acceptable minimum and have additional packages downloaded.

Quote:
This is not Puppy's fault- the entire Linux community snobs at dial-up folks.
Smile This is quite unfair. An unfortunate characterization. On the one hand Linux supports a wide array of devices, even without the vendor support. It is the dial-up modem vendors who snob Linux. On the other hand, you are now part of the linux community (gotcha!). Even Barry (Puppy's creator) is a dial-up user.

Windows 'solved' the problem by sheer market forces: If the HW vendors do not provide a driver, people will not buy it. The "linux community" is still not large enough to have that clout, but if people buys Linux supported hardware (when possible) and complains to the rest of the vendors about lack of linux support, the situation will improve (it is currently improving).

Quote:
Why isn't there a website or forum devoted to solving Linux dial-up probs?
Do you mean something like the linux documentation project? -->http://www.tldp.org/HOWTO/Hardware-HOWTO/modems.html.

There are many more resources like that one.

As I said, I understand your frustration, I just think that the blame was missplaced.
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bobwal


Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 7
Location: Queensland Australia

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 19:19    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

I agree with aahhaaa completely about the frustrations of trying to set up some internal modems for linux distros. I am a pensioner who is very cost concious and live in the fastest growing provincial city in Australia - but some of us still "aint got broadband".

I am promoting linux, especially Puppy now that I have found it, to some 50 "oldies" at the local 60 & Better who are all dedicated computer users, so I have a strong motive to find answers.

This is not just Puppy but all distros - I have tried to setup my D-Link Controllerless card (which I was told "runs linux") on Red Hat, Fedora, Mandriva, Ubuntu, SUSE and now Puppy. They all tell me to get the intel 536 or Smartlink driver and it will run. It dont. Sad

I have just today worked through the link on Barry's Download Link to ftp://ibiblio.org/pub/linux/distributions/puppylinux/ and downloaded the file slmodem-2.9.10-k2.6.11.11.tar and will shortly boot back into Puppy and see if this is the driver I need. If it does, I'll post.

I agree with rarsa - linux aint easy sometimes but we have to try to find answers for other newbies if linux, and particularly Puppy, is to be accepted by general users of that other OS.

If any of you more experienced users have anything other to offer on this, eg is this the correct Smartlink tar or not, please let us know.
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BarryK
Puppy Master


Joined: 09 May 2005
Posts: 7047
Location: Perth, Western Australia

PostPosted: Mon 17 Oct 2005, 21:25    Post subject:  

Quote:
I have just today worked through the link on Barry's Download Link to ftp://ibiblio.org/pub/linux/distributions/puppylinux/ and downloaded the file slmodem-2.9.10-k2.6.11.11.tar and will shortly boot back into Puppy and see if this is the driver I need. If it does, I'll post.


No it won't work.
In the filename you see k2.6.11.11 meaning it is for the 2.6.11.11 Linux
kernel.
There is another with k2.4.29 in the filename, which is the right one.
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bobwal


Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 7
Location: Queensland Australia

PostPosted: Tue 18 Oct 2005, 00:50    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

You're right of course - it didn't work.

Thanks for the post - I'll get the right one and try again.
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bobwal


Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 7
Location: Queensland Australia

PostPosted: Tue 18 Oct 2005, 03:27    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

OK a little progress - Have got slmodem k2.4.29 downloaded and installed with country set and the dialup icon on the desktop. The setup accepted ttySL0 as a successful test.

I should probably say that this modem is working fine with Win98 SE.

I have tried dialing withGK Dial Xeznet and Wvdial - the first two report connection lost or unsuccessful and wxdial reports no modem detected.

I have 9 entries in dmesg ¨slamr: SmartLink AMRMO modem.

On running / usr/sbin/slmodemd I get the error mdm setup: cannot open dev ´dev/slamr0´ : no such device
cannot setup device ´/dev/slamr0´

Anybody got any ideas or do I have to spend out on an expensive external modem?

If that is the case - which one is guaranteed to run with linux? I really do need to get a sollution for those of us without broadband access. Otherwise we are all stuck with that other OS.

Your help is greatly appreciated.
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Sage

Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 4784
Location: GB

PostPosted: Tue 18 Oct 2005, 04:40    Post subject:  

Very early in my Web forays, a cousin working in networking advised purchase of a standard external DUN modem, even though they were expensive at the time. This remains a valid recommendation and best advice even for broadband users - no-one should be without one, even if it is the intention to switch to a cheap internal Windows model. You can solve ALL 'doze problems (eventually) with such a device simply because the native 'standard' drivers work with all makes. Furthermore, all Linux distros of all ages have always been able to recognise a standard external modem. Once you can achieve that vital Net connection, apart from bloatware, one is free to download a plethora of interesting looking SW and make all the mistakes under the sun.
Get an external, serial modem, whatever the cost, whatever the intended final configuration.
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puppian


Joined: 18 Jul 2005
Posts: 538
Location: PuppyLand

PostPosted: Tue 18 Oct 2005, 05:44    Post subject:  

rarsa wrote:
I think that in your case there is a way for helping the next guy after you: Advise Barry about the missing package. It's most likelly an oversight.

The packages (slmodomXXX, ltmodemXXX...etc) are there, just that people either can't find the link ftp://ibiblio.org/pub/linux/distributions/puppylinux/ or don't know which file to download (slmodem-???-???????.tar / ltmodem-???-?????.tar? Linux newbie won't know what's lt, sl, or kernel version Smile), just like what bobwal (and me too) has wondered. So it would be nice to have that link mentioned in the Wizard, or in the Help file at least.

Flash wrote:
Perhaps something like the Symantec website that inspects your computer for viruses, or the Microsoft update website that inspects your computer for stolen Microsoft software? Twisted Evil The computer would already need to be connected to the internet in order for the website to inspect it, which would make such an 'online wizard' redundant, wouldn't it?

I prefer an offline one ("a detailed HOWTO customized for the specific computer") actually Smile

bobwal are you using intel 536 modem? I've got it working in Puppy 1.0.3 with the driver downloaded from Intel's site, but can't get it work in 1.0.5 (see this post). In 1.0.5, insmod gives:
Code:
# insmod -f Intel536.o
Warning: kernel-module version mismatch
        Intel536.o was compiled for kernel version 2.4.20-8
        while this kernel is version 2.4.29

The module is still loaded, but gkdial and eznet won't connect. In their readme they said "This release supports 2.4.x and 2.6.x kernels. It is not compatible to 2.2.x kernels." Hey, I think 2.4.29 is one of 2.4.X? Confused

Does the line "Intel536.o was compiled for kernel version 2.4.20-8" mean recompling Intel536.o would help? Sorry if this is a dumb question Embarassed
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bobwal


Joined: 04 Oct 2005
Posts: 7
Location: Queensland Australia

PostPosted: Tue 18 Oct 2005, 20:31    Post subject: Re: The LINUX BARRIER: Dial Up Modems  

puppian wrote
Quote:
bobwal are you using intel 536 modem? I've got it working in Puppy 1.0.3 with the driver downloaded from Intel's site, but can't get it work in 1.0.5


I have previously BP (Before Puppy) downloaded the information sheet and tarball for the intel 536 modem and tried with the other distros - with no luck.

I got to the bit about troubleshooting and Hamregistry and my limited tech knowledge gave out. Embarassed I've a lot to learn yet.

I think I will take the advice from Sage and advise my friends at our CUG to invest in an external modem for dialup. Me - I've just had a great new offer of broadband from aapt so I think I'll move on to more interesting things, like learning all about Puppy.

Anybody want a D-link internal modem - for use with the Other OS only??

Thanks for all your help - Puppy and the Forum are great Laughing
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aahhaaa


Joined: 06 Oct 2005
Posts: 341
Location: Lower Michigan, North America

PostPosted: Wed 19 Oct 2005, 08:33    Post subject: D-link find Linux link here  

OK, guys, I appreciate the sincere responses a lot. Before responding, here's a link from D-link which might help some people:

Which D-Link wireless adapters have Linux drivers available?
http://support.dlink.com/faq/view.asp?prod_id=357&question=General%20Wireless

I think there is a Linux Barrier- there should be far more users than there are by now. Once you've seen a working Linux machine you know its true. But not everybody is a computer enthusiast, just like not everybody is a car enthusiast, climbing under the hood of their car every weekend. That doesn't mean they are dumb, mebbe only that they use their computer for daily work and are more interested in that work than the computer itself. This is the hold Windows has on the OS market, imho.

The Live CD movement recognizes that, as did the graphical desktop. BUT... if the average uncommitted computer user is can't make Linux communicate in something under an hour of fiddling, I'd submit that 9 out of 10 people will give up with the impression that Linux is too complicated for them.

This 'fail' scenario is hidden in the multitude of distros, machines, and other factors facing the new user; but it is the main hurdle now that a desktop appears automatically. From the desktop, with a connection, they can get work done, while learning the Linux way.

Without a net connection, well.. how many of you would buy a car with a blown trannie? Confused Linux gets back-burnered.

I think a solution for most desktop dial-up users is absurdly simple. PCI modem cards are cheap & easy to install. If the Linux community would focus on one card and get it up to Plug & Play in a generic Linux handshake... the maker would sell a lot of cards- to the average user who'd rather just install a supported card than suffer through hours of decyphering an unknown language. It could even ship with a distro or two! Very Happy (Who's got China's phone number?)

For laptops & wireless folks, perhaps a well-heeled distro like Ubuntu could impliment a real solution.
I was impressed that Puppy's wizard returned the modem hex code; isn't that & the Linux distro version all that's needed to find a driver?

Couldn't there be a page on Distrowatch or somewhere where you input those 2 bits of info, and are taken to an .ISO download? (one that can be dealt with in Windows and/or Linux.)
Puppy doesn't need the CD once it's loaded, so a driver CD could be accessed; or a NTFS file on the HD or thumb could be opened. (I just realized a complication- thumbdrive users can be expected to encounter multiple DUMs.)

I need more coffee... & time to go to work. Shocked
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Flash
Official Dog Handler


Joined: 04 May 2005
Posts: 11068
Location: Arizona USA

PostPosted: Wed 19 Oct 2005, 09:17    Post subject: Re: D-link find Linux link here  

aahhaaa wrote:
...But not everybody is a computer enthusiast, just like not everybody is a car enthusiast, climbing under the hood of their car every weekend. That doesn't mean they are dumb, mebbe only that they use their computer for daily work and are more interested in that work than the computer itself. This is the hold Windows has on the OS market, imho.

Exactly put.

aahhaaa wrote:
...I think a solution for most desktop dial-up users is absurdly simple. PCI modem cards are cheap & easy to install. If the Linux community would focus on one card and get it up to Plug & Play in a generic Linux handshake... the maker would sell a lot of cards- to the average user who'd rather just install a supported card than suffer through hours of decyphering an unknown language. It could even ship with a distro or two! Very Happy (Who's got China's phone number?)

For laptops & wireless folks, perhaps a well-heeled distro like Ubuntu could impliment a real solution...

Hmm, see my post here.

Last edited by Flash on Mon 09 May 2011, 08:23; edited 2 times in total
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aahhaaa


Joined: 06 Oct 2005
Posts: 341
Location: Lower Michigan, North America

PostPosted: Wed 19 Oct 2005, 09:18    Post subject:  

afterthought- if one of you guys that really knows what you are doing would put half-height & full-height PCI winmodem cards on eBay- with a working driver setup disk for Puppy- I'd buy one of each! Very Happy (others would too, I think)

ps the external modem thing works, I know; at least for desktops. But somehow few people have seemed willing to do it. Can you rec a specific model? Be nice if it had a combo firewall like routers do... but mebbe I missed the memo. Wink
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