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-   -   Setup of NTL cable with Mandriva LE 2005 (

Conch├║r 09-13-2005 02:23 PM

Setup of NTL cable with Mandriva LE 2005
Hi there,

A friend's Windows 98 computer's PSU and HDD recently blew, meaning that I had to replace those componenets. I am going to install Mandriva LE 2005 for them, and my only concern is their NTL (UK ISP) Cable modem (which has an Ethernet port).

NTL provides a CD for setup with Windows, in which I believe you have to enter the username and password they provide. This has been done a couple of times through Windows.

When I connect the modem to the computer with Linux, should it automagically setup the Internet, or will I have to set it up through Mandrake Control Center?

If anyone has any experience of Mandriva and NTL, I would be glad to hear it. :)

Thanks for all your help,



XavierP 09-13-2005 02:35 PM

If the pc has connected once, it's not a problem. Just install Mandriva and set it to DHCP, that always worked for me.

And yes, I am on NTL cable. With a wireless router, no less.

Conch├║r 09-13-2005 02:41 PM

Hi XavierP,

Thanks for your reply. I know how to get Windows to retreive an IP address automatically, but not Mandriva.... :pengy:

Thanks again,


reddazz 09-13-2005 03:17 PM

I use NTL with Mandriva and all you need to do is set it to use dhcp during the installation. You can also do this when you have finished the installation, by using the network config tool in MCC.

Conch├║r 09-13-2005 03:36 PM

So once I enable DHCP, and insert the Ethernet cable, I can launch Firefox, and type in, find this thread, and express my sincere thanks? ;)

XavierP 09-13-2005 03:51 PM

You certainly can. Go to it, tiger! :D

poochdog 09-13-2005 05:52 PM

I'm another succesful linux user connected to NTL! So long as your pc has logged into the net before you will have no issues!

tredegar 09-14-2005 10:40 AM


So once I enable DHCP, and insert the Ethernet cable, I can launch Firefox,
If you are at the first-install stage, I strongly recommend you plug in your modem's ethernet cable, and have it turned on & given time to connect and authenticate before you boot from the first Mandriva disk: This way you'll probably find that everything is automatically set up for you. The same goes for your printer, and any other peripherals you'd like to use: Have them plugged in and turned on before you start the install. Later on you are of course free to play with your setup, but this makes for a nice straightforward newbie-setup. Good luck!

Conch├║r 09-16-2005 02:08 PM

Hey there,

I have just (successfully) installed Mandriva onto the computer. I did this in my own house, so I didn't have any access to the Cable.

Would I be correct in thinking that a normal Ethernet cable should work for the connection to the modem? Or will I need a crossover cable?

And - what is the right way to enable DHCP (so I don't make a mess of it) :rolleyes: :p

Thanks (once more ;) ) for all your help


tredegar 09-17-2005 03:25 AM

You just plug the modem into your ethernet port, using the (normal) cable supplied with the modem. As you have been using the modem with windows, it should already be set up with the necessary passwords etc.

Then, as root, issue the following commands:

ifdown eth0 # Bring etho down in case something was already using it
dhclient eth0 # Connect, and get an IP address from the modem

Now you should be able to connect to the net.

If that worked, put those two commands at the end of the file /etc/rc.d/rc.local, and then you will always be connected at boot time.

Now you are connected you need to get the Mandriva updates, and there are a lot of them. Do this with easy urpmi (search this site for instructions).

Hope this helps.

bonsonno 09-27-2005 08:56 AM

On this topic - does anyone know how to go about setting up a linux powered pc to use an ntl cable modem (via the ethernet port) which has never had windows on it and as such hasn't been used before?

Currently there is only one pc in my house which can use the ntl broadband and that is a laptop with XP - I can't seem to get my linux pc (blag if anyone's interested in the distro) to find the ip address and actually connect to the damn thing.

Ntl have been useless so I hope someone can help me!

tredegar 09-27-2005 01:02 PM


Yes, we are interested in your distro: "My LQ" -> "Edit Profile" isn't too difficult to do! And it would do you no harm to tell us the type of DSL modem you are trying to use.
That said, welcome to LQ!

It is also helpful if you can tell us what you have already tried, and what error messages you are receiving, if any.

If you have not used your NTL modem with the laptop, I suggest you do, you can then call NTL's (windows) helpline to get it set up. Once it is set up (See below for the general idea), it does not care whether you are running windows or linux, it will manage the connection to the internet (and if you are lucky, also provide a decent firewall and router / switch (search for my previous posts on this subject)).

Generally broadband modems that connect via ethernet need you to log onto them to get them set up the first time. For mine I do in my linux browser. Your modem may have a different IP address - you should read the manual that came with your modem.

My modem then asks me to login (the manual tells me how). After you have logged in to the modem you need to set up your providers details for the type of connection, for BT it is like this: "Encapsulation = PPPoA VC-Mux", "VPI=0", "VCI=38", "MRU=1492","MTU=1492","MSS=1432", "Authentication=Auto", "username=MyUserName", "Password=MyPassword".
Then I save the changes and reboot the modem and that's it: The "Internet" is at the end of the Ethernet cable so long as the modem is switched on.

Once the modem has connected and authenticated there's usually a pattern of steady lights that tell you all is well.

Then plug it into your linux box (In case you did the [or equivalent, your modem may be different] from windows), and follow the instructions in my post above.

Good luck.

Conch├║r 09-27-2005 01:43 PM

Firstly, thanks to everybody for their help! Everything worked out great!

A seperate query I now have, (more to do with modems than Linux) - do all DSL modems support PPPoA?

bonsonno 09-27-2005 02:27 PM

Right, well the modem itself is an NTL 250 and no instructions were given to us when the broadband was installed - so I don't know the ip address of the unit.

Using the installation cd which the installer guy left I was able to get it up and running on a friends xp powered laptop. I can connect fully on the xp laptop. However, take the cable out of thaty and put it in my linux pc - and nothing!

THe error I get is when I try to activate the eth0 connection:

Determining IP information for etho....

[insert really long pause here]

Determining IP information for etho.... failed.

And that's it.

I just don't understand why it would not connect using my pc but would on windows.

It is important to note that this cable modem is not a router - you can choose whether to connect to the internet via usb or ethernet as they are the only two outputs on this little thing. So I've taken the ethernet from that and run it into a small little router box (literally 6 ethernet sockets on the side of a small box) and then split cables off from that to go to all the machines in the house.

I think that better explains the problem, sorry for being not as descriptive as I could be and I really appreciate your help!

Oh one more thing, I've tried running the xp laptop (that does get the internet) with a slax live cd and lo and behold the internet works...

Not really sure what that means though...

tredegar 09-28-2005 03:44 AM


Oh one more thing, I've tried running the xp laptop (that does get the internet) with a slax live cd and lo and behold the internet works...
Not really sure what that means though...
When you think about it, this must mean that:

Your modem is working correctly and connecting to your ISP.
There is nothing wrong with your ethernet cable or connectors.
Linux (slax) has no problem communicating with your ISP, and vice versa.
... And so the problem must lie with blag linux not recognising or configuring or loading the module(s) for your eithernet port. There may be some helpful error messages in /var/log/messages and the outputs from lspci, lsmod, and ifconfig eth0 might be useful in tracking down the problem.

Have you tried searching / asking in the blag forums?


Edit: Conch├║r, glad you got it working, thanks for the positive feedback. Your other question is unanswerable (Perhaps there is a single DSL modem made in Timbuktoo that does not).

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