Saturday, May 17, 2008

Creating a Wireless 3G Network Connection on Fedora 9 With a Novatel Ovation U727

One of my favourite features of Fedora 9 is NetworkManager's new support for wireless 3G modems. I just recently got a Novatel Ovation U727 EVDO Rev A USB Modem for Sprint's network because this modem explicitly supports Linux. Sprint provides instructions for using the U727 on Linux from its Web site. But, since Fedora 9 makes this process much easier, here is how to do it:

  1. Have your laptop always load the proper drivers for the modem by adding the following lines to /etc/rc.local:
    #load driver for Sprint Novatel u727 wireless modem
    rmmod usbserial
    modprobe -v usbserial vendor=0x1410 product=0x4100
  2. Insert your U727 into your laptop.

  3. The U727 has built-in flash storage for which Fedora will mount on your machine, launch a file browser, and show a link on your desktop. Close the file browser, and right-click the link to your flash storage and select to eject the device (note that unless you eject the flash storage, your modem won't work).

  4. Right-click on NetworkManager and select Edit Connections.

  5. Click on the Add button to create a new connection for your U727.
  6. Fill in the new dialog box with the name of your modem's connection and the number to dial. In my case, I named the connection Sprint Novatel U727. Type in #777 for the number to dial.

  7. Hit OK and then close the dialog box
  8. Now, click on NetworkManager, and you should see your new USB modem connection show up as a connection option.
  9. Select your new connection, and you'll be online!
Here are instructions for using your modem in the future now that it's setup:
  1. Insert your U727 into your laptop
  2. Eject the mounted flash storage device in your modem (unless you eject the flash storage, your modem won't work)
  3. Go to NetworkManager to select your U727 connection

I'm currently writing this post while online with my Sprint U727 modem. As a side-note, I selected Sprint's 3G service for mobile broadband even though I don't use Sprint for my cell phone service because Sprint has truly unlimited data usage (Verizon and AT&T cap at 5GB/month) with good terms of service (Verizon restricts things like streaming media), and its EVDO rev A network is fairly fast. Here are the results of a speed test that I just ran:

Update 5/19/2008:

Sprint is updating its Terms of Service to cap data usage at 5GB/month too. Given that, I will likely switch from Sprint to Verizon, which I prefer for cell phone service. Verizon also sells a U727 modem, so these instructions will work for Verizon too


Unknown said...

Bryan - Thank you very much for these instructions. I have often been frustrated with the Sprint MiFi 2200 battery failing well before my laptop does. Now I make use of the remaining available power in my laptop to use the MiFi.

I added the connection (under Ubuntu-Jaunty Jackalope) to the Mobile Broadband section of the configuration display. I also had to add my password (leaving the username blank) to make the connection.

I haven't rebooted yet, but I tried running
sudo modprobe -v usbserial vendor=0x1410 product=0x4100
from a terminal and got several warnings. Do you know whether this command has been superseded in ubuntu?

Unknown said...

I didn't need the wifi password after all. From right clicking on the Network Manager in Ubuntu, and choosing to Add a connection to Mobile Broadband, a list of carriers is provided. Selecting Sprint sets up the connection. I also did not need to edit /etc/rc.local. The connection manager in ubuntu 9.04 does everything for me.

Anonymous said...

Fedora will mount on your machine, launch a file browser, andD3 cd key show a link on your desktop. Close the file browser, and right-click the link to your flash storage and select to eject the device (note that unlessGuild Wars 2 Gems you eject the flash storage,

nongfu380 said...

Love this specific! Sure makes biking seem exciting! :)I like this idea, the whole one piece cosplay costumes getting pregnant of creating overlooked cable connections aesthetically.