[SATLUG] Lenovo IdeaPad with Linux & Sprint Broadband Card

John Pappas j at jvpappas.net
Wed Jun 17 17:33:53 CDT 2009

On Wed, Jun 17, 2009 at 14:26, Jim Wells <jfw5cpa at gmail.com> wrote:

> I received an e-mail asking for help with a Sprint Broadband card to get it
> to run under a Lenovo IdeaPad running LInux.

1st, the card MUST be "activated" by a windows box (can be a VM, as all the
cards use either direct USB or PCMCIA/ExpressCard to USB hardware
configurations).  Once activated, it can be used on Mac/Lin.

Then it depends which card it is and how new the Kernel is.  It will use one
of 3 different drivers, and if the proper IDs are compiled into the drivers
(I had to do this by hand with older kernel/newer card combos.)  You can
also use modprobe options when you load the driver so that it binds to the
device.  IIRC sprint has Linux instructions for how to explicity load the
driver with the proper IDs (Vendor/Model).

Once the driver is loaded and the device file is properly appearing
(/dev/ttyUSBx or similar), the next step is to "dial-up" just like with a
classic modem, but instead of a usual phone number, you use #777 and the
username assigned at activation (Does not seem to matter to sprint, just to
the software doing the connections.

The newer versions of NetworkMangler handle this type of modem automatically
once the driver is configured properly.

> She took it to Geek Squad and they couldn't get them to work together.
>  (Surprise, Surprise)

Politically, they are correct; technically they are not.

>  Do any SATLUGers know of someone who could help her get this working?

Sure.  I have used most of sprint's aircard models with linux at one point
or another.  Pass her contact info along (offline) and I will knock it out.

>  I can't believe that no one has tried and gotten one of these to work.

Agreed.  There was a couple threads a while back about this exact thing and
several of us got different models working on different distros.



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