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2001 Dec 30 17:07

The following is an archive of a post made to our 'vox-tech mailing list' by one of its subscribers.

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Re: [vox-tech] Getting around the Winmodem
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Re: [vox-tech] Getting around the Winmodem



On Sat, 14 Jul 2001, Larry Ozeran wrote:
> I knew I could count on ME (you?) for some alternatives. A PC Card 56K
> modem may be the simplest answer, but I have heard that the (software
> based?) winmodem sometimes precludes an addin card from working. I'll look
> over and try some of the (many) other suggestions.

Ah, this can sometimes be the case. If you have a good laptop vendor, they
would have enabled support in BIOS for you to disable the on-board modem
and even serial ports if you wish. When these resources are freeded (IRQ
and IO) you can often go to windows and delete the modem and serial port
"devices" in the Device Manager* of windows. (Win 95/98/ME: System control
panel, devices tab, Windows 2k in hardware tab (memory nad?) half way down
the page as a button "Device Manager") When these devices are deleted, you
should be able to shut down your machine. Then you can insert your new
pcmcia (PC card) modem/modme+ethernet/etc, into the machine and turn it
on. Windows 95/98/Me should auto detect it and ask for drivers if the
drivers are not available i the CABs of the box. Windows NT 3.51/4.0
has/had bad pcmcia card support and will likely not auto detect the
hardware unless you tell it to scan for new hardware. Windows 2K has
better chance of the serial ports and modem being auto-detected.

* -(Device Manager or possibley another name like it)

Once you have the hardware loaded on your windows side, see what you can
do to "disable windows from changing resources of this device" It may
complain and tell you that it is a bad idea to do it, and claim fire an
locusts will cover the earth, but read further for some reasonsing on
this.... (Disabling windows from managing that device should be part of
the device manager if you decide to go that route.)

After you have it set up to not change the device resources, read the
resourced used by the modem. Better" modems will use the "standard" serial
port IOs and IRQs. Examples include:
COM1: IO:0x03f8 IRQ:4
COM2: IO:0x02f8 IRQ:3
COM3: IO:0x03e8 IRQ:4 (If IRQ4 in-use by other serial port or device, then
thisserial port should use some other IRQ that is "free")
COM4: IO:0x02e8 IRQ:3 (If IRQ3 in-use by other serial port or device, then
this serial port should use some other IRQ that is "free")

PCMCIA modem cards that use IO ports not in those ranges may be more
difficult to use in Linux, but YMMV.

If you have chosen to diable all of your on-board serial ports and the
on-board modem, and any IR serial ports too (no need to disable USB-type
serial devices for this test unless you have a special reason outside of
this test to disable them) then you can try to boot into Linux.

Things to do after linux starts with your PCMCIA mode card:
as root:
# dmesg |less -i
page through the list of kernel messages from the boot. Look for
"serial" or "Serial" and see if you can find any reference. If it shows
you the same IO/IRQ used in windows for a "serial port" or maybe
"modem" it is very likely that you can have the new modem work. If it is
not listed you have other tools and things to try...

as root:
# setserial /dev/ttyS0
(The above would assume your modem was on Winodws "COM1" while /dev/ttyS1
woudl be windows COM2, and /dev/ttyS2 would be windows COM3 and /dev/ttyS3
would be Windows COM4. You can insert the appropriate /dev/ttyS[0-3] to
the resource settings used by the device)
If you see something like:

laptop:~# setserial /dev/ttyS2
/dev/ttyS2, UART: unknown, Port: 0x03e8, IRQ: 4

Then you have serial port enabled in your kernel. (good)

You can then play with something like minicom (or your favorite linux
termianl application) and configure it to use your expected modem
resources for talking to a modem. Then you can try to send it
ATH
and see if it gives back "OK" or a number. If it gives nothing, then try
another serial port until you have tried all ports /dev/ttyS0 through
/dev/ttyS3.

If your pcmcia car uses weird or wacky resources, you may also want to
check out the /etc/pcmcia directory (at least on my distro) and play with
the settings in the seriqal script/files.

Now, the big advantage of having windows not change the resources of a
pcmcia card as it would normally be expected to change them is to be able
to do some static mods in linux to the card and not have to worry about
things changing on you. This was more of an issue with PnP based PCMCIA
cards and the early Linux 2.0 kernels. Resources changing is better in
2.2. and 2.4 kernels, but I prefer the static settings when possible.

I know many more people that do not do this, and get along just geat with
their systems, so you may not even need to do this at all. I am just a
control fanatic on some of my systems. ;-)

One thing to do is beg/borrow someone else's pcmcia card modem and see how
well it works for you in windows/linux. If it works geat, then try to buy
their model.

If you still have problems with the pcmcia card modem being detected, then
try a newer release of the pcmcia card services from sourceforge, compile
it and install it.

> >If the webserver is Win NT/2K, Uhh. :-P   (heh)
> FYI: The site is hosted on a shared Linux box, but I am limited in the
> methods I can use for access by the hosting company.

They may have sshd installed on their server right now. If this is the
case, then you can examine using scp or possibly a zmodem upload over an
ssh-based shell connection.

Back to the con,

-ME

-----BEGIN GEEK CODE BLOCK-----
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------END GEEK CODE BLOCK------
decode: http://www.ebb.org/ungeek/ about: http://www.geekcode.com/geek.html
     Systems Department Operating Systems Analyst for the SSU Library


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