How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Wireless broadband over 3G/4G
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newairly
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How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by newairly » Tue Nov 10, 2009 12:21 pm

I have an existing 802.11g wireless router which is currently connected to a satellite modem. Activ8 satellite.
I would like to change to the Exetel wireless broadband service using the usb modem supplied with the post paid plans. A Huawei E160E I believe.
Is there a simple way to connect this usb modem to the existing router? I do not want to have to use my PC as the bridge. I am looking for some simple device which gives a LAN output so I can put this into the router in place of the satellite modem.
My searching so far has only turned up full blown wireless routers with a usb WAN port for modems.

Phil

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CoreyPlover
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by CoreyPlover » Tue Nov 10, 2009 1:47 pm

newairly wrote:My searching so far has only turned up full blown wireless routers with a usb WAN port for modems.
These are by far the preferred option for sharing a 3G USB modem.

There are only three ways to possibly share a 3G modem:
* plugging 3G modem into computer and using Internet Connection Sharing
* plugging 3G modem into router and then plugging router into wireless router
* plugging 3G modem into a new wireless router

The first option is the cheapest and requires no new hardware but you indicated you didn't want to odo it this way
I don't know any devices that allow the second option
The third option is better than the second anyway because you reduce the amount of wires and devices down to a single unit. You should be able to find such devices for about $180 too, though I just stumbled across the Netgear MBR624GU and it lists at only about $120

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Dazzled
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by Dazzled » Tue Nov 10, 2009 2:20 pm

Most routers are extremely stripped down computers running an equally abbreviated version of Linux. There is usually no serial bus, nor a kernel module to drive one. The makers don't release any more source code than the bare GPL kernel stuff. Most run a busybox shell. To convert an existing router is theoretically possible, but who would want to?

There is one more option besides CoreyPlovers' list, if you have a spare obsolete computer to rescue, build your own router. An old Pentium is quite sufficient, provided the motherboard supports USB for the modem. Install a Linux as a gateway in front of your present wireless router, and Bob's your uncle. All distros can be configured as a full gateway/router (use the distro's help, forums etc). Some are so small they run in RAM and boot off CD or USB, so not even a hard drive is required (look up Puppy for an idea). If you have plenty of RAM, use a full sized distro. Once it works, you can remove both monitor and keyboard (connect with X Windows remotely). If you have enough ethernet ports you can even use this as your normal router.

bowjjj
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by bowjjj » Tue Nov 10, 2009 2:56 pm

Gday, After fiddling with sharing 3g wirelessly recently I've tried both the Netgear MBR624GU ( $108 from MSY.com.au ) and also the Netcomm N3goo5w ( $105 from MSY ). Netgear has more lan ports ( 4 ? ) to netcomm 1. Both similar to setup though the netgear comes with more bits ( USB ext, proper stand ) and is quite a lot bigger. Both of these use way less power and space compared to any computer. Update the firmware for either as they generally have fairly old versions on them. Check out the info on their websites too as you don't get enough info ( IMHO ) in the box to get either working...
See ya Jim

paddles
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by paddles » Tue Nov 10, 2009 8:02 pm

As the others have said, a new router is the easiest and cheapest way. I looked at non-router devices that I could connect to my existing router and then connect the USB modem, and they were a lot more expensive.

Personally, I'm using the Netgear MBR624GU which has generally worked well for me. (Occasionally it drops connection and I can only get it back by removing and reinserting the modem, or very rarely by cycling power). However, if you try to connect a modem that isn't on its list of approved modems, it is likely to reject it outright. I tried a couple of Netcomm N3G005W units but had problems with them, one was pretty much FUBAR and the other wouldn't work consistently with WPA-PSK or WPA2-PSK - but the Netcomms looked like they could be a bit more forgiving about what modem they used.

If your current router is Netgear or Netcomm and is working well wirelessly, I'd suggest that you choose the 3G router from the same manufacturer.

Regards

Tim

newairly
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by newairly » Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:04 pm

Thanks for the useful replies.
The router I have is a TP-Link WR541G. It was , and is, just a basic unit but has been stable and reliable so I did not want to chance something else which might not work as well on the Wi Fi area.
I have looked at the NetComm N3G005W which is also basic, but has the 3G capibility. Some reports suggest that the Wi Fi side is not too good.
What I want to do is to just try out the wireless broadband without getting rid of my satellite connection so am looking at a simple and cheap alternative.
I think what I might start with is the $5 /month post paid plan and put the modem in my laptop. My current usage is about 1GB/month. If I like the way it works I can then try setting up ICS and using it in place of the satellite modem as a trial. (Yes I know I said that I did not want to do that!)
I will need the Yagi antenna here to get connection but I am pretty sure it will work because a neighbor about 1km further behind in a direct line from the tower gets very good speed.(~3Meg) The tower is about 30km away but I am in a direct line and a bit higher. The tower serves mostly highway traffic so is lightly loaded and prospects are for continuing good speed.

Phil

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Dazzled
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Re: How to connect e160 modem to existing router?

Post by Dazzled » Tue Nov 10, 2009 9:17 pm

There is also this little gadget made by Huawei - http://www.three.com.au/cs/ContentServe ... 1530703114 if you should want something a bit portable.

Have you seen http://steve.blogs.exetel.com.au/index. ... 08/12.html and http://steve.blogs.exetel.com.au/index. ... 09/01.html for a remote-from-tower installation in Western Australia.

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