broadband connectivity advice

Scott Berry scott at
Mon Jan 5 20:12:47 EST 2004

Hi Chuck and Jacob,

When I went with ccable here I just had to set my dhcp.  Unfortunately
there are no config tools in Debian to run the dhcp so I had to do it
all by hand.  The only problem I ran in to is that my new ip address was
not found so I had to unhash one line in dhcp for this.  Chuck if you
write me off list I can send you a copy of the cable modem howto I have
all the howtos on my system.

On Mon, 5 Jan 2004, Jacob Schmude wrote:

> Hash: SHA1
> On Mon, 5 Jan 2004 18:44:20 -0500 (EST), Chuck Hallenbeck wrote:
> >1. What part of the setup must be done by my provider, and what
> >part by me? My provider advertises that they only support Windows
> >and Mac OS, but that's what Verizon said too.
> You hook the cable modem up in to your computer and your TV cable line, and your computer connects through it. However, activation is done on the
> provider's end and you can't use it until they activate you, in the case of adelphia (my provider) they activate you based on the mac address of your cable
> modem so even if you move you're still activated as long as you stay in the area where they provide service.
> >>2. With DSL, I used the Roaring Penguin PPP-O-E scripts and
> >configuring, starting, and stopping my connection was a snap. Is
> >there any analogous tool for handling cable modem DHCP
> >connections?
> No, you don't need it. The cable modem will appear as a standard ethernet device if you plug it in via USB, and if you plug it in via ethernet, you just use it
> through your NIC. Either way, only thing you need is standard network tools such as dhcpcd and ifconfig. In general, you don't "stop" a cable connection,
> it's always on.
> NOTE on USB connectivity: Linux supports cable modems based on the CDC standard, which most are. If yours is not, you may have to connect via
> ethernet. This means, that if you already use your ethernet card for home networking, you're gonna need another NIC. If your modem isn't detected by the
> hotplug subsystem, it may still be supported. Try loading the CDCEther module in 2.4 kernels, or the usbnet module in 2.6 kernels. The cable modem I use is
> a motorola surfboard sb-5100, which works fine with USB, though it isn't acknowledged as being supported in the driver, the only slight quirk being that after
> fedora's kudzu tool got done with it, it needed to be unplugged and reset--turning on safe probing in kudzu fixed that. Same applies if switching from a 2.4 to
> a 2.6 kernel, cable modem needs a reset.
> >3. I found lots of stuff to read about DSL, but precious little
> >about cable modem in Linux. Anyone know something useful I can
> >sink my teeth into?
> There used to be a cable-modem howto at the LDP, I think it's still there. It's a bit dated (for instance it doesn't acknowledge that linux can use most USB
> cable modems), but it may still be useful. In general there's precious little to read because all standard networking configuration applies, so there's really
> nothing special that needs to be done in most cases. If it works with mac os x then it's a 99% chance that it works with linux as well, I've found this to be the
> general rule for services and devices alike.
> >My system is a Slackware 9.1 distro with lots of bells and
> >whistles. But I have tasted a high speed connection and can
> >hardly bear to use a 56K dialup ISP again.
> Yeah, I know what ya mean.
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Scott Berry
Email: scott at

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