A success with GPRS

neil woolford lists at neilwoolford.plus.com
Wed Nov 30 16:22:06 GMT 2005


I sometimes need to send and receive email, including (large) image file
attachments, without access to my broadband connection.

I use a GPRS PCMCIA card to do this, an Option Globetrotter with
T-Mobile branding and SIM.  (Bright pink, seeing as you ask.)

Up to now I've run it under Windows 98, which gives less than sparkling
performance.  Rather than allow you to simply run it as a modem, the
bundled software is a super, all encompassing 'executive solution' with
plenty of one-click buttons and nice (pink) graphic trim.  Without going
into details, it stinks.  Especially the auto-update facility that
regularly tries to install an update that doesn't work with the card
model I have or Windows 98.  Neat eh?

Worst of all, it is prone to random stops in the middle of transmissions
- long enough for the mail client to time out - and sometimes just won't
get a signal even though there is a good strong one available...

Anyways;  enough of the griping.  I've set it up as a modem under Ubuntu
(Google for GPRS Globetrotter and so on to find the details).

It works far far better.  It finds signals in seconds, dials in reliably
and doesn't freeze for no apparent reason while working.  The data
transfer rates still aren't fabulous, but better than waiting until I
get back to base.

Linux rules!  At least over dodgy front ends for good hardware...

Neil
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