Sunday, September 26, 2010

Using Micromax BSNL 3G Modem on Ubuntu 10.04.

While doing my new job at Jharsuguda I am also introducing people to Ubuntu Linux and many people are using it booting from USB stick. BSNL provides Micromax USB modem for net connection and I had specific request from one person yesterday to help him set it up on Ubuntu. I brought his modem home and tested it as following.

While googling for this modem I discovered that usb_modeswitch was necessary to detect it as modem instead of mass storage device. I downloaded the latest version of usb-modeswitch and usb-modeswitch-data from Debian repositories. Then I proceeded as  follows:

When I plugged in the Modem it got mounted as a CD. I got its vendor and product ID (thro lsusb) and unmounted it:

$ lsusb
Bus 002 Device 004: ID 1c9e:f000
$ eject /dev/sr1

I found the configuration file for ID 1c9e:f000 in /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/
Since I did not want the configuration on my machine I simply used it:
$ sudo usb_modeswitch -c /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/1c9e:f000

The modeswitch reported success I got the new ID for the device:
$ lsusb
Bus 002 Device 005: ID 1c9e:9605

I inserted the driver thro:
sudo modprobe usbserial vendor=0x1c9e product=0x9605

and the Network Manager detected it as BSNL Mobile Broadband device using the same set up which I use for the Mobile.

There is a wonderful script Sakis 3G for doing all this automatically.

Update on 12th May 2012: I have posted today about using this modem on Ubuntu 12.04 and it is entirely different. Click here to read.
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