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scrottie (4167)

scrottie
  scott@slowass.net
http://slowass.net/

My email address is scott@slowass.net. Spam me harder! *moan*

Journal of scrottie (4167)

Wednesday May 18, 2005
09:27 PM

DSL meets Linux - or, the nifty Actiontec router

[ #24763 ]
Girlfriend ordered DSL (I have Voicestream's $20/mo unlimited GPRS and their HotSpot service). This thing apparently replaces the Cisco 675/678's Qwest used to deploy. At first I was anxious when I saw the packaging - the antistatic bag had a big "Before connecting the cables... Do not connect any cables to this modem until instructed to do so. Please begin by inserting the Installation CD into your CD-ROM drive". You're supposed to connect the thing to your computer using USB and run a configurator program on your computer before attaching it to the 'net, apparently. This made me nervous. It posed a few problems: the Linux install on my laptop probably won't run the software, even under emulation, and my Panasonic Toughbook CF-R1 doesn't even have a CD-ROM drive (actually, that's not entirely true - said girlfriend has a USB drive I often use, but just imagine for a moment that I didn't have such a cool girlfriend). Okay, screw the instructions. I plug the device into power and then Ethernet and hit it with my Web browser - it attempts HTTP Basic Auth - that's a good sign. I don't have the password and I don't guess it so I call Qwest. The technition I get doesn't bawk when I explain I've thrown the instructions out the window and I want the password to the HTTP Auth interface but the password he gives me doesn't work so he has me do a hard reset (ram a small object into the little hole for thirty seconds... hrm, kind of suggestive, actually) and then it won't even talk to me. The tech asks if there's a switch in the way - I reply "yes" as I bypass it and plug the machine directly into the router and set a static IP of 192.168.0.2 to go along with the router's IP of 192.168.0.1. It lets me in without authorization. The Web based interface is complete, logical, and friendly and I quickly get the settings plugged in - but not before noticing a telnet admin option. Telneting to the thing, I'm greeted by Busybox! The thing runs Linux! And it's running thttpd! I love thttpd! And it has a tftp utility so I could load more software onto it! Woo... go Actiontec! The cgi-bin programs are compiled binaries. I was half expecting to see Perl or somethin'. And the ISP, fastq.com, is Unix-friendly. They're a little local outfit - they never thank you for calling or any of that garbage - but morons don't answer the phone there. So I'm shocked - a neatly designed, user friendly, OS-neutral DSL modem and a helpful, knowledgeable Qwest tech made my day. Weee!

-scott
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  • Dear goodness, man, throw in a paragraph break or two.
    • Every time I enable comments, I wonder why I've enabled comments. Read the damn thing if you want to, but don't bitch about it if you change your mind later.

      -scott