Re: 56k questions

On Tue, 2008-08-05 at 19:38 -0400, Darren Albers wrote:
> On Tue, Aug 5, 2008 at 7:12 PM, Jess Bermudes <jbermudes gmail com> wrote:
> > First of all, I'd like to thank everyone for their hard work on this
> > project, NM is an awesome tool. This post isn't so much a complaint as
> > it is feedback and an inquiry, so sorry if it comes off harsh.
> >
> > I'm an Ubuntu 8.04 user and occasionally I need to use my Dell
> > laptop's modem because I am not near any wireless or wired
> > connections. After finally getting the drivers up and running, I
> > noticed that using a modem in nm is a little awkward. I have two
> > options: connect to ppp0 and disconnect from ppp0. I'm trying to
> > figure out what was the design decision behind having it that way. I
> > feel like I have no real control over my modem when using nm because I
> > get no feedback about what my modem is doing. As a recent convert to
> > Linux, here's my experience using nm for dialup for the first time:
> >
> > 1. I press connect to ppp0, nothing happens, so I press it again. I'm
> > wondering "hmm, how do I know if it's dialing?" after trying again, a
> > few seconds it starts to dial. I think to myself "that was weird, but
> > oh well, it's working now"
> > 2. After the dialing process and all those classic beeps and boops and
> > screeches that we've all come to love have finished, nothing happens.
> > The icon of nm stays in the disconnected state (two computers with a
> > red [X]) I'm thinking "wait, did it connect or what?"
> > 3. I go to the dialup connections menu in nm and see that my 2 choices
> > are still "connect to ppp0" and "disconnect from ppp0". I open my
> > browser to discover that I do in fact have a connection, but I'm still
> > confused.
> > 4. When I have concluded the use of the internet, I go to "disconnect
> > from ppp0", and once again, I find no indication that it has
> > successfully disconnected.
> >
> > Now, as a little background, I'm a computer science student in
> > college, so if it confused me, I'd hate to be in the situation of
> > other users. And while some of you may suggest that there are other
> > programs out there instead of nm, if nm is the default manager for a
> > distro like ubuntu, then making it as transparent to users as possible
> > is probably a goal.
> >
> > I guess what I'd like to see is some sort of feedback from nm during
> > the use of dialup connections. Are there technical limitations that
> > prevent this, or is it more of a lack of manpower? If I can learn
> > about the situation, then perhaps I may be able to contribute to make
> > nm just as amazing for dialup as it is for wired/wireless connections.
> >
> >  - Jess Bermudes
> > _______________________________________________
> > NetworkManager-list mailing list
> > NetworkManager-list gnome org
> >
> >
> Ubuntu 8.04 ships with 0.6.6 which does not have dial-up support so I
> think you are seeing some Ubuntu specific additions.  If I remember
> right what you are seeing is that it just calls the Gnome dialup tools
> rather than network manager doing anything which is why NM shows you
> as disconnected.  I think version 0.7 of Network Manager will have
> much better integrated for modems

To be fair, 0.6.x does have _some_ support for modems, but that
basically just has menu items that call out to ifup.  Since, of course,
ifup is usually a binary or shellscript, you don't get any feedback
because ifup wasn't mean to give feedback in any way except on the
command line.  That's the whole problem with the badly integrated
dial-up support in 0.6.x.

We've got a much better PPP framework in 0.7.  To support dial-up, we'd
need to create some settings for modems that might include "modem
scripts" and such that we pass to pppd for use with chat.  We've got
most of the infrastructure, but the problems are mainly user-interface
issues and how to integrate random modem scripts, since the world of
dial-up is a lot more varied than GSM or CDMA.

Dial-up won't hit 0.7 and it's further back than Bluetooth support, but
I don't think it would be too hard if somebody wanted to pick it up.


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