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1. Introduction

1.1. Purpose of the howto

If you've got a Rockwell or Conexant chipset based modem and you can't seem to get the modem to work with Linux, then you've come to the right place. Chances are that you've got a Software modem (also known as a "winmodem") and you'll need a driver to get the modem working under Linux.

If you've got a Software modem whose chipset is not made by Conexant or Rockwell then you should see the linmodem howto.

Note that this guide has no information about using Conexant/Rockwell modems for operating systems other then Linux except for the following: There are no known drivers for FreeBSD or BeOS, Windows drivers can be obtained from Conexant.

1.2. About the howto

This HOWTO originally started out as a website about installing Conexant HSF modems under linux, but after several months of being online the number of hits on the website was rapidly growing (100 hits/day at time of writing this HOWTO) and so were the number of requests for information about Rockwell/Conexant modems that were being posted to the linmodem mailing list, usenet and various web based forums. This lead me to decide that the information needed another distribution medium which would be more accessible to users. The result of this was this HOWTO which has expanded to include a far larger range of information then the original website had, in order to cover all the questions being asked on the internet.

At the same time as the increase in demand for information about Rockwell/Conexant modems under linux a number of non-english webpages appeared explaining how to setup the drivers in languages as diverse as Portuguese and Japanese, these webpages often lacked all the current information which was available making it harder for users to get their modems to work. I decided to release this HOWTO under the GNU Free Documentation License, so that native speakers of other language can translate this document into their own language and redistribute it freely, thus ensuring that all users get all the information regardless of what language they speak. If you're interested in making a translation of this HOWTO please contact me.

The HOWTO assumes a basic knowledge of Linux, you should be familiar with the basics of how to use a console/terminal, how to use common commands like less and be familiar with a text editor.When the howto needs you to type something in at the console, the console prompt will look like this: '[user@localhost]$ '

Some parts of the howto rely upon a greater knowledge of Linux, but those section will mainly apply if you have a non-standard Linux distribution.

1.3. Feedback

If you have any feedback on how I can improve this HOWTO or are interested in translating this HOWTO into another language please contact me via email at ImranG@btinternet.com(if you don't get a reply within a week resend the message to imran@bits.bris.ac.uk).

If you need some help in getting your modem to work, rather then contacting me for help directly see the Getting Help section as you are more likely to be able to get a faster answer from the places indicated then if you email me direct.

1.5. Acknowledgments

Thanks to:

  • Olitec for distributing and Conexant for producing the original HSF driver

  • Marc Boucher for writing a wrapper for 2.4.* kernels

  • Denis Havlik for bringing the Olitec driver to the attention of the rest of the Linmodem community

  • Thomas Iversen for mirroring the drivers

1.6. Getting Help

If after following this HOWTO you still can't get your modem to work and you haven't already done so, check the troubleshooting section at the end of this HOWTO as it covers the most common problems. If you are still stuck then there are three main places where you can get help,

Linmodem mailing list

The Linmodem mailing list is the main place on the internet for discussion of the use of Software modems under Linux. If someone else has had the same problem as you chances are that someone on the Linmodem mailing list knows about it. To join the mailing list send a blank email to discuss-subscribe@linmodems.org, the mailing lists homepage is at www.linmodems.org.

SoftModems IRC channel

If you want to talk to someone real time your best bet is the #SoftModems channel on the OpenProject's IRC network. See www.openprojects.org for details or connect to eu.opirc.nu on port 6667.

Newsgroups

The newsgroups comp.os.linux.hardware and comp.os.linux.setup often have people familiar with software modems. If you speak Italian the newsgroup it.comp.os.linux.iniziare has people familiar with Conexant/Rockwell neewsgroups.

Remember when asking for help to include your modems Device ID, Vendor ID and any error message you got.