(?) The Answer Gang (!)

By James T. Dennis, tag@lists.linuxgazette.net
LinuxCare, http://www.linuxcare.com/

(?) No Modem Driver?

From Maenard Martinez on Mon, 04 Sep 2000

Answered by: Jim Dennis, Heather Stern

i have a dual boot pc (linux and win98). i want to use my modem in linux (which has no driver for linux) so that i can connect to my isp. i tried using gnome, i found out that it detects the com# of the modem but it is id as ms-dos.

(!) [JimD] What does "it is id as ms-dos" mean? Does it mean that GNOME identifies the COM# as "MS-DOS?" Which GNOME utility are you using? GNOME is a suite of utilities and a set of programming libraries and interfaces (and CORBA objects). So there are several different programs that you might be running under GNOME in you attempts to configure this modem.

(?) [JimD] i used kppp of kde to dial-out. i configured teh kppp so that it will use the same com the modem is using in win98. the error message is "modem is busy". how do i configure my modem w/o linux driver?

(!) [JimD] It sounds like you TRIED to use KPPP to dial out. Did it actually dial?

(?) thanks, maenard

(!) [JimD] I suspect that you are talking about an internal/winmodem here. In that case, rip it out, throw it away and buy a real modem. How do you know if it's a "real modem?" Basically the easy answer is: spend a little extra money and get an external modem that plugs into your serial port. Eventually USB might be supported as well. If its internal then the chances are good that it is a "winmodem" or a "softmodem" --- which are not supported under Linux.
You could always try waiting for the support to become available. There is a project that may eventually support some win/soft-modems (linmodems.org). However, that is likely to take a long time and is likely to require considerable technical expertise for the foreseeable future. It is not a practical alternative to you.
Search our back issues on the term "winmodem" for discussions about why winmodems are not supported by Linux (or any other decent operating system).
(!) [Heather] Hey, don't forget that winmodems are mentioned in the Linux Gazette FAQ
A couple of things I'd look at before ripping it out in disgust:
  • run lspci and if it is detected and says it's a winmodem, well, junk it. If you feel like tearing your hair a bit more and it's one of the few supported at linmodems.org, more power to you.
  • when you say "same com port as DOS" do you mean com3=ttyS3? If so, you've thought wrong, since in Linux we count from 0 ... the example I gave might be on ttyS2 (because that's the 3rd comport) or ttyS0 (maybe it's the only live one).
  • Install wvdial and see if its config script autodetects your modem. It's fairly configurable for strange conditions on the ISP's end of the connection too.

Copyright © 2000, James T. Dennis
Published in the Linux Gazette Issue 58 October 2000
HTML transformation by Heather Stern of Tuxtops, Inc., http://www.tuxtops.com/

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