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-   -   Does Linux (Ubuntu 10.04) work with Verizon DSL? (Verizon reps don't know...) (

morgothaod 09-28-2010 11:41 AM

Does Linux (Ubuntu 10.04) work with Verizon DSL? (Verizon reps don't know...)
1 told me yes, 1 told me no, and 1 told me she thought so. I don't know who to believe. I have Ubuntu 10.04.

The Verizon DSL that I want to get is the 1 mb (cheapest one). I have 2 computers (1 with Ubuntu and 1 with Windows 95) that I would like to share the internet. They are in 2 different buildings that are next to each other. Could I use a router and a cable to make them both get internet? The rep told me "No." But I think she was lying. She said it was not possible because of the phone jack.

If it is possible, what router will work with these 2 operating systems?

linus72 09-28-2010 11:51 AM

I have Verizon DSL and no Windows
I only run multiple linux installs incl 10.04

I have the Verizon Modem hooked to my old Linksys wireless/wired router
and only use wired connection

so, from phone jack, using dual-jack, it goes to modem, then to router, then to my 2 PC's

its a always-on connection, 3mb,
it autoconnects at boot

MensaWater 09-28-2010 12:05 PM

1) Most ISPs won't talk to you about anything other than direct connection from the modem (cable or DSL) to a Windows system. All their documentation is geared towards that. Most of the folks answering the phone at the ISP don't actually known anything but rather read from a script when doing setup. If you found someone that said Linux works you're ahead of the game.
2) Despite that most of these WILL work with Linux or any other system that does ethernet TCP/IP. The connection from the ISP is to the modem not to your PC - the modem in turn connects to your PC. However often they use software on your PC to configure the connection from your end and THAT is usually Windows software so you might need a Windows system for initial setup.
3) Routers connect to the modem where the PC would normally connect so yes you can use them because it has nothing to do with the ISP connection. This is done so often these days that Best Buy, Target, Wallyworld and others sell the routers.
4) The phone line is RJ11 which is 4 pins whereas most network connections use RJ45 which is 8 pins. They're correct you can't use the phone line for the connection from the router to your other PC. You would have to run category 5 cables from from where the router is to where the other PC is. OR assuming it is close enough you can simply get a wireless router and connect via wi-fi from the other PC to the router. (Most desktops don't include wi-fi but most laptops do. The same places that sell the wireless routers sell USB wireless keys that can be put in the desktop to connect to wireless routers.)

So if it were me I'd put the DSL modem closest to the Windows box so I could hook it directly to it when I got a script reading moron at the ISP. I'd then get a wireless router and setup wireless to the Linux box (which might require the USB key mentioned above).

You might also look to see if there are other options in your area. There are third party ISPs in many of the large cities that use the existing phone lines to provide DSL but are more knowledgeable about Linux connections and routers. Also of course you can use Cable instead of DSL in many locations. The cable companies typically have the same script reading mentality but you might prefer the service. (I won't get into the "which is better" argument - if you want to hear all the BS people use to support what boil down to OPINIONS you simply need to do a Google search for that argument.)

snowpine 09-28-2010 12:17 PM

Verizon will not help you do this (at least not if you purchase the cheapest possible plan) but if you are knowledgeable about networking anything is possible. :)

An inexpensive wireless router sounds like the best solution to your situation, assuming the two buildings are close enough together.

bigrigdriver 09-28-2010 12:26 PM

My experience has been just as MensaWater describes in 2) above. My ISP doesn't "officially" support Linux; only Windows. Their support couldn't help me. I had little trouble getting connected using the software in YaST (OpenSuse). All I needed from the ISP was a bit of information (ports, gateway URL, authentication method, etc) which I entered manually.

ISP's don't "need" to install anything on your computer; it just makes things easier for them. The tech who comes out to hook you up will probably have a laptop with all the software he needs to complete the job. He can/should also provide you with an information sheet with all the information you will need to set up your Linux software to use the connection.

morgothaod 09-28-2010 12:31 PM

Lets assume that I set up Verizon DSL on the Windows 95 system. If I plug in the cable from the router to the Ubuntu PC, will it automatically get internet (That is what happens on cable)? Or must I install things to get the internet to work with DSL?

The buildings are about 15 feet from each other, so will I have trouble getting a reliable wireless signal? Also, what USB wireless keys are compatible with Ubuntu? Will I have any difficulty installing a router to the Windows 95 system (Such as the installation disk not supporting my operating system, if it comes with a disk. I'm not computer savvy.)?

Is this the correct setup?

convert the single phone jack to two phone jacks using the device Verizon gives me
put phone line back into phone jack
use other phone jack and connect it to modem
cable #1 connects to the modem and router
cable #2 connects to the router and to the Windows 95 PC
cable #3 connects to the router and the Ubuntu machine

snowpine 09-28-2010 12:45 PM


Originally Posted by morgothaod (Post 4111596)
convert the single phone jack to two phone jacks using the device Verizon gives me
put phone line back into phone jack
use other phone jack and connect it to modem
cable #1 connects to the modem and router
cable #2 connects to the router and to the Windows 95 PC
cable #3 connects to the router and the Ubuntu machine

This is exactly how I do it at my house (except that I have Fairpoint instead of Verizon, and XP instead of 95).

Whenever I have a problem and need to call Fairpoint tech support, they make me disconnect everything except the Windows computer plugged directly into the cable modem, before they will help me. "We do not support it" means "we cannot help you," not "it is impossible." :)

MensaWater 09-28-2010 01:05 PM


Verizon DSL on the Windows 95 system
Oops - Missed that it is Windows 95 earlier. You might want to verify with Verizon that Windows that old meets their requirements.

morgothaod 09-28-2010 01:30 PM

Is the router plug and play or do I need to configure it? I'm not knowledgeable about computers, so will I have a hard time setting it up? Maybe I should call the Geek Squad?

GrapefruiTgirl 09-28-2010 01:38 PM

If I may advise: Do Not Call Geek Squad!

At the very least, search the 'net a bit about them before doing so; you should find enough info to justify not calling them.

Routers are "basically" plug+play; generally speaking, they should perform their basic functions as a router, with little or no configuration. Something like whether or not to use DHCP for connected clients, is usually set to "YES, Use DHCP" by default.

However, routers may have features (firewall, Type-Of-Service controls, DeMilitarized Zones, WPA encryption, etc..) that you want to turn on or off, or configure, which are beyond the very basic service that a router provides, so if you wanted to use anything beyond normal router offerings (share internet between router ports or antenna) you'd want to log into the router and configure it.

If the router has been previously configured by someone, and/or you don't know how to un-configure it, or you lost the password, or you want to set it to the factory defaults, you will find a tiny pin-hole on the router's back or bottom, into which you stick a paperclip or similar object to press the button inside the hole; while pressing that button, unplug the router from the wall power socket, wait a few seconds, and re-plug the router into the wall. After a few more seconds, release the pinhole-button.

I haven't read this entire thread, but I reckon if you remain patient and stick with those trying to help you, you will get a good result in the end, if it is possible, and without calling the Wrecking Crew.

morgothaod 09-28-2010 01:46 PM

Alright, I just fear that I'm going to buy the router and not be able to set it up. Then when I try to return it, they won't refund me.

snowpine 09-28-2010 01:49 PM

Most of the under-$100-at-Best-Buy routers work the same way: You connect your computer, and then type a series of numbers (such as into your web browser's address bar (the place where you type as detailed in the instruction manual.

This connects you to the router's control panel. Usually there is a default username and/or password that you can find in the router's instruction manual.

Once you are logged in, you can change a lot of settings. The most important is to set up a password for your wireless network so other people can't leech off of you. For many users, that is all that's necessary. Most home-market routers have "DHCP" activated by default, which means you don't need to change any settings on your computer, just plug it in (or connect wirelessly).

morgothaod 09-29-2010 05:54 PM

Update: I tried the Ubuntu computer on Verizon DSL and it worked. My friend uses Verizon with a modem and all I did was unplug the ethernet cable from his computer and put it in mine. I didn't have to do configuring anything. The internet started up when I clicked on Firefox.

I want to know if/how much a router will slow down my internet speed if 2 people are on the internet. I plan on getting Verizon's 1 Mbps option.

I talked to someone at best buy and he suggested that I buy a $150 router (To connect the 2 computers wirelessly because they are 20 feet apart) or buy 2 routers. He also said that I need to buy a USB adapter (like you all told me). My second option is to buy a wire and run it to the other computer. If I do that, the guy told me any router will do.

GrapefruiTgirl 09-29-2010 06:27 PM

As far as 2 people sharing the internet and the router slowing down the connection, do not worry about it. It won't slow down the connection in any noticeable fashion. If you were sharing a dialup connection, then I'd be concerned (I've been there) but any sort of broadband, and you'll be fine. 1 Mbit is plenty to share between two people/computers.

As for cost: to some degree, you get what you pay for. You can get cheap junk, or expensive junk; don't get a 19.99 Walmart router if you want it to be decent and not cook itself in a relatively short time. Get a lowish-end to middle-end router of a popular name like Belkin or Linksys.

Some routers may appear to have better signal strength than others if/once you have had the opportunity to experience a few different ones, but chances are, 2 computers in one home should have no trouble receiving a good signal.

Finally, whether you're running a wire from the router to the second machine, or connecting the second machine wirelessly, I don't think which router you get will make any difference, as long as you get a router with LAN ports on it if you want to use a wire, and most have them, usually 4.

If you're going to get a USB adapter for one machine (or both) check that the router and the USB thing both have channels/frequencies in common; for example, if your USB thing does wireless B,G, and N, get a router that supports the one you want (many routers and USB things support several or all of these). Check for Linux driver compatibility before buying a USB wireless gadget. Some are easier than others to get working.

Good luck!

verndog 09-29-2010 06:31 PM

I don't even have a router, I'm using just a hub and it works fine. I use a crossover cable from Westell dsl modem to hub and from hub to any of my pc's. Been using it that way for several years.

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