7.05.2008

Better broadband in *ubuntu


Having used linux for a long time now, I also do my part in persuading interested friends to switch over to Linux. And the distro I recommend? Kubuntu. Well I dont want flame-comments by die hard GNOME users, I'm only supporting the ubuntu family of distros(Ubuntu/Kubuntu/Xubuntu etc) and you will agree that the community suppoert for the ubuntu family is HUGE. Huge as in overwhelming. This applies to the whole ubuntu family. If you're a KDE fan, go for Kubuntu, GNOME fans reach out for ubuntu and if you are sticking to an outdated config, simply shut your eyes and get Xubuntu.

Back to the point... most newbies are stuck over a very commonplace question --> How do you set up your broadband connection on this damn thing? If you already know, skip the instructions and read the rest of the post. And in case you have come to this blog searching for an answer to the same, well here goes a n00b version:

0. make sure your modem is on and properly connected.
1. Open your command-line (terminal, konsole, xterm, whatever).
2a. At the prompt, type sudo pppoeconf
sudo is an ubuntu adaptation of 'su' (SuperUser) command in other distros. This allows you to assure the computer that you are root. And in case you are curious, PPPoE stands for Point to Point Protocol over Ethernet.
2b. When asked for your password, yield.
3. You will get a primitive-ish user interface that automatically configures the modem at eth0 and asks you some questions. Dont lose your head if these make no sense; the default/recommended options are fine.
4. Type your username and password for the connection when asked.
5. Follow what it says after that and set it to start at boot time if you prefer it that way. (For data/volume-based billing this is fine)
6. As it says, you can use the command pon dsl-provider to start it, plog to see the status, and poff to terminate the connection.
7. Bingo!

Less hassles for better broadband.. my efforts :)
I've been learning linux shell sripting(BASH) and some javascript to keep myself busy these days, and the disappointed attitude of a friend over the connection ("look at all these commands") prompted me to write my first practical shell script. Well for those who dont know, a shell script is the linux/unix version of batch-files in DOS. Only, infinitely more powerful that those .bat files!

My shell script is a tiny bit of code that gives you a menu based user interface(text based, however... I'm still not into graphics programming) that you can run from your terminal. You can connect, disconnect, view logs, save them etc. Nothing much actually. But quite useful... I use it now :)

You can download the file as 'dsl.tar.gz' by clicking here

Download and save it somewhere. From linux, extract it to your home directory. Follow the instructions in the README.exe file provided with it (if you are a n00b, follow them carefully!). I'm working on better features like terminating the connection at a set time, and stuff. Comments and suggestions on this first little venture always welcome :)

13 comments:

g-man said...

pppoeconf didn't work with my asianet connection last time around. i configured it somehow without using the terminal. i don't exactly recall how, i just went through all the options and did something or the other :D

Vrij said...

Buddy can u tell me how Ic an migrate to Ubuntu and still retain all my files, photos, music and folders intact. Thats the biggest issue I'm facing in migrating.

I've tried Ubuntu with the Wubi installation within windows and its indeed good.

Sriram said...

@g-man: Ah.. the fun is in tweaking!
@ vrij: You'll need some free disk space for
1. root partition (/) --> around 8-10 GB is more than enough (min 4GB though)
2. swap (akin to virtual memory) --> twice the size of ur RAM recommended
try moving files from one partiion to another till you get this much space freed. Use the partition editor (gparted) on the live CD to get things done. After that, select custom partitioning during install and select the partition to be used for root and swap. In case you dont understand the sda1, hda1, etc lingo which designates the hard disk partitions, just drop me a mail and I'll be gald to tell you.

And within the partition selector during install, just change the 'mount point' of the drives you wish to access(windows drives) to "/media/C", "/media/D", etc for C, D, and the rest.

Hari Shanker said...

Someone's going pro these days...

I too had a bad time with Ubuntu. Guess it's all alright now! :-)

Sidhusaaheb said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Sidhusaaheb said...

Ubuntu, Kubuntu, Xubuntu? Reminds me of Xanadu, where good ol' Mandrake, the magician, used to live, or at least that's what I read in Indrajal Comics.

:D

To put it plainly, it all sounds like Greek to me, on account of my being 'technologically challenged', mainly.

:P

Sriram said...

@hari: amen!

@sidhusaaheb: ha.. xanadu reminds me of Kubla Khan, the poem by Colerige. In the class, I was one of the only three admirers the poem had!

rantravereflect/ jane said...

:(
it all sounds liek zulu to me :)

silverine said...

I feel like a stripper at a Mormon convention :|

Zip..went over my head! :p

Sriram said...

@jane: well ubuntu is an african word, roughly translated as "humanity to others"!

@silverine: The good lord shall enlighten you in due course of time.. you have come empty handed to the convention, and shalt not return so.
:p

Nitesh said...

Thanks man.....looking forward to your better feature.....that starting and terminating at a set time

Vincent B Mathew said...

nice post on how to configure a broadband connection.... worked for me(i m using bsnl connection in u.p west.) but having problems using poff and pon (vincent@ubuntu:~$ pon
Error: only members of the 'dip' group can use this command.)
somehow i will figure that out too.

Sriram said...

@vincent: simply prefix 'sudo' before the commands :)