[clug] Phone / USB Modems

Ian Munsie darkstarsword at gmail.com
Sun Aug 23 00:14:52 MDT 2009

>>> Very curious that you got BlueTooth working, but *not* USB?  At least it
>>> works, which is great news.
>> I think the non-usb bit for the phone comes down to having a Optus USB thing.

Q: What was the USB mode on the phone set to? It should be "PC Suite"
to use it as a modem and should appear as /dev/ttyACM0 when plugged
in. If it's set to any of the other options (Data transfer, Image
print, Media player) it won't work. The only difference between my
/etc/ppp/peers/optus-n95usb and /etc/ppp/peers/optus-bluetooth is
specifying /dev/ttyACM0 instead of /dev/rfcomm0

>> I used this (mostly) to get the bluetooth working:
>>   http://davesource.com/Solutions/20070520.T-Mobile-Nokia-E65-Ubuntu-Linux.html
>> It does work out "of the box" to browse the phone contents.
> Looks a little complicated :-(  at least success has been reported and I presume once set up it's fairly easy to use.

I just looked at the page and I suspect it's been over-complicated:
* Get internet on the phone working
You can skip this if you want, using it as a modem is independent of
the APN settings on the phone (which can be confusing).

* Get bluetooth working
Chances are that this will already work on your linux box, but I can't
guarantee that and neither could the author which is why the section
is in there.

* Setup networking
I did this differently, you only need one chat script under
/etc/chatscripts/blah referenced from /etc/networking/peers/blah and
'pon blah' and 'poff blah' (may be Debian specific) will control the
connection. I can provide both scripts that I use to connect to Optus
with a Nokia N95, both over USB and bluetooth. There are some subtle
differences required for Three - from memory the authentication is
slightly different (PAP vs CHAP or something) and the APN will be

Alternatively, wvdial can be used to simplify this step (and replace
the last step), but my experience indicates that it doesn't always
work and when it doesn't it's easier to just go back to the
traditional ppp and chatscripts.

* Pair the phone
Skip this bit (Not sure why he is attempting to pair it with hidd
A.K.A. Bluetooth Human Interface Device Daemon) - it should pair when
you first attempt to bring up the connection, then just set the phone
to trust the computer. If something fails delete the pairing from the
phone and try again.

* Bind bluetooth to an rfcomm device
Uhh, check if your distro has a /etc/bluetooth/rfcomm.conf - it's much
easier to set it up through that then always doing it manually by
adding a section that looks similar to this:
rfcomm0 {
  bind yes;

  # Replace this line with your phone's *bluetooth address* found by
  # entering *#2920# on the phone or reading the label under/near
  # the battery and interleaving colons between every second digit:
  device 11:22:33:44:55:66;

  # This WILL be channel 2, ignore his instructions to search for
  # this unless you want to educate yourself in the wonders of
  # serial over bluetooth
  channel 2;
  comment "Nokia N95 Modem";
Then restart the bluetooth stack (Reboot if you don't know how to do
that) to reload the file and be amazed by the appearance of

* Start pppd to connect.
If you can, use the pon and poff commands instead of what the article
says (non Debian derived distros may be different - the article should
work in all cases). Also, the "better way" to handle the routing is an
option in the /etc/ppp/peers/blah file, as in "defaultroute" and
"replacedefaultroute". Finally, ignore the bit about releasing the
rfcomm binding - that simply isn't necessary, the bluetooth link is
only used when something accesses /dev/rfcomm0 so it doesn't hurt to
leave it there.

>> How reliable is the BlueTooth connection and modem connection?  Difficult to
>> set up?
> Reasonable, not as stable as the USB version.  Perhaps I should pull
> my finger out and try the USB version.  Stay tuned..

I have found the same thing here. The bluetooth connection sometimes
drops out inexplicably. Sometimes the phone has to be rebooted to make
it work again (I warm reboot mine with nStarter because it's faster
than cold rebooting, but occasionally a cold reboot is required).
Also, if you are using p2p software just swap to USB first to avoid a
lot of pain as the phone's bluetooth stack tends to crash under those

Again, I am happy to provide further assistance, including providing
my ppp and chatscript files.


On the day *I* go to work for Microsoft, faint oinking sounds will be
heard from far overhead, the moon will not merely turn blue but
develop polkadots, and hell will freeze over so solid the brimstone
will go superconductive.
     -- Eric S. Raymond, 2005
Please avoid sending me Word or PowerPoint attachments.
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