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Aircard 775 not supported in SUSE linux 10

Novell Cool Solutions: Feature
By Clifford Weinmann, Steve Berry

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Posted: 24 Apr 2006
 

PROBLEM: Aircard 775 not supported in SUSE linux 10

Applies to:

  • SUSE Linux 10.0

SOLUTION: Sierra Aircard 775 installation on Novell SUSE 10

Background

I recently aquired a Sierra Aircard 775, which we wanted to use under Novell SUSE 10.0 on an Intel Pentium laptop. We could not find any documentation on how to do this. Although Sierra does not support Linux, they do have a document on how to configure the Aircard 710/750 under older versions Linux using cardmgr. As far as we can tell, the 775 is compatible with the 710/750. SUSE 10 now uses hotplug/udev. We managed to figure out how to configure this, and decided to document the findings in the hope that it might be useful to someone else. This was done on a 2.6.13-15-default kernel, on the MTN South Africa network, but should be equally applicable elsewhere. It worked for us, but we can't guarantee that it would work for anyone else.

Installation steps

  1. First we need the Card Information Structure (CIS) file for this card, which is available from Sierra.
  2. This Aircard uses the serial_cs module. We need to modify serial_cs to tell it about the CIS file.
    • a. Install kernel source.

      b. update /usr/src/linux/drivers/serial/serial_cs.c:

      in "static struct pcmcia_device_id serial_ids", insert:

            "PCMCIA_DEVICE_CIS_MANF_CARD(0x0192, 0x0710, "SW_7xx_SER.cis"), /* Sierra Wireless AC710/AC750 GPRS Network Adapter R1 */
      

      After line:

            "PCMCIA_MFC_DEVICE_CIS_MANF_CARD(1, 0x0101, 0x003d, "3CXEM556.cis"),
            

      c. Compile your own kernel by running the following commands as root:

        1. cd /usr/src/linux

        2. make oldconfig

        3. make

        4. make install

        5. make module_install

        6. mkinitrd

  3. Now we need to tell modprobe to load the serial_cs module for the Aircard. Create a file called /etc/modprobe.d/sierra containing the following line:

      alias pcmcia:m0192c0710f06fn00pfn00paD85F6206pb0BA21128pc07D22D0DpdD9533FEC serial_cs
      

  4. Reboot system.

  5. Insert the aircard. /var/log/messages should now have an entry like:
    • Dec 27 13:49:28 rafiki kernel: ttyS0 at I/O 0x3f8 (irq = 5) is a 16550A
      

    If this does not work, turn on debugging by runnnig "udevcontrol log_priority=debug", then insert the card again and look at what /var/log/messages says.

  6. Now the driver is loaded. Next step is to configure the modem and provider in YAST.
    • a. Start YAST and go to "Network Devices" / "Modem".

      b. Add a new modem. The device name is found in /var/log/messages, and wass /dev/ttyS0 in the example above.

      c. Go to "Details", and change "Init 2" from the default to:

      AT+cgdcont= 1,"IP","<APN>"

      Replace <APN> with the APN for your network.

      d. On the ISP screen, add a new provider, providing a provider name. The phone number to use is *99#. Provider the username and password for your network.

      e. This creates a new modem device (modem1 in my case).

  7. Test it using cinternet/kinternet. My connection fails on first attempt, with /var/log/messages saying "wvdial[8622]: Modem not responding". On second attempt it works, though. We still need to figure this out.

References

1. Guide to Sierra Wireless AirCard 7X0 for Linux - http://www.sierrawireless.com/SupportDownload/ac7x0_linux.asp

2. Sierra Wireless CIS - http://lists.infradead.org/pipermail/linux-pcmcia/2005-September/002667.html


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