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ADSL FAQs


1.0 Common Questions
2.0 Enternet
3.0 RASPPPoE
4.0 Networking


1.0 Common Questions

1.1 What is ADSL?
1.2 How do I find out if I can get ADSL?
1.3 How do I choose the best ISP and plan?
1.4 I've been told I'm on a "pair-gains" line and can't get ADSL. What do I do?
1.5 I've been told I'm on a "RIM" and can't get ADSL. What do I do?
1.6 What is a line filter?
1.7 What is a line splitter?
1.8 What is a Central Filter?
1.9 I have a Panasonic Cordless phone and people can't hear me talking with ADSL on.
1.10 What's a CMUX?
1.11 What's a DSLAM?
1.12 What is VPI & VCI?
1.13 What is PPPoE?
1.14 What is PPPoA?
1.15 What is IPoA?
1.16 What is bridged Ethernet?
1.17 What is RFC1483?
1.18 Should I choose a bridged or routed connection?
1.19 All of these terms are too confusing what do I do?
1.20 Which modem should I get?
1.21 Which is better - USB, PCI or Ethernet modems?
1.22 Do I have to buy a modem that the ISP recommends?
1.23 When should I buy my modem?
1.24 How do I make my ADSL modem work with my existing Router?
1.25 What's known about the Alcatel modems?
1.26 Can I turn my Speed Touch Home into a Pro?
1.27 How do I configure my PC for ADSL?
1.28 Do I need any additional software to connect to ADSL?
1.29 Which is better, Enternet or RASPPPoE?
1.30 Can ADSL work on Linux and FreeBSD?
1.31 How do I make it go faster?
1.32 I was promised 512 download speeds but I'm lucky to get 50. Is there something wrong?
1.33 If I try file transfers or game serving with other ADSL users it doesn't work. Why not?
1.34 How do I send a Fax via my ADSL service?
1.35 What is ADSL2/2+?


1.1 What is ADSL?

ADSL stands for Asymmetric Digital Subscriber Line. It is a Broadband connection that works over an existing Phone line, yet still leaves it available for normal analogue (voice) use. It has a few variations that are still in the testing phases in Australia, but you may see them referred to overseas as T1. T2 etc.

1.2 How do I find out if I can get ADSL?

Most ADSL providers have an on-line facility that lets you punch in your phone number to check if services are available at your exchange.
Telstra has one here and other ISPs usually have something similar amongst their pricing and signup web pages.
Although this is not a 100% guarantee that you can get ADSL as there are still other factors that can get in the way, it's a start.
Some of the problems that this test will not always reveal is if your line is on a "pair-gains" system or connected to a "RIM".

1.3 How do I choose the best ISP and plan?

Whirlpool have setup www.broadbandchoice.com.au which has a listing of most Broadband providers and a neat plan finder along with discussion forums.

1.4 I've been told I'm on a "pair-gains" line and can't get ADSL. What do I do?

Unfortunately there's not much you can do.

A pair-gains system is a digital switch that allows a bunch of people to share a limited number of lines rather than having an individual line (pair) per person all the way back to the exchange. This allows, for example, 100 homes to share a 50 pair line. Pair-gains systems are installed for all sorts of reasons such as a stopgap as in the case of a street that is developed faster than expected (or not expected), and/or a cost saving measure at the time, particularly where there are physical difficulties with providing a larger cable. Although they are an excellent means of providing adequate voice services to an area quickly, it is not physically possible to connect ADSL through a pair gains switch because the "pair" is constantly switching plus the digital switching method would probably conflict with the ADSL signal anyway.

There is a glimmmer of hope for some people: In some cases you might have say a 30 pair cable going into an area and only 25 pairs are being utilised for the pair gains system. What can happen here is Telstra may be able to change your line over to one of the spare 5 pairs. This is called a "transposition" and will also usually involve some creative joining at various places all the way back to the telephone exchange. This possibility is investigated automatically with any new ADSL connections so if you still get the message eventually that you can't have ADSL due to a pair gains system on your line then you're out of luck.
Getting a 2nd line is no guarantee that you won't just get another pair-gain line either so there's really no solution other than changing address.

A jointly funded venture by Telstra and the Commonwealth Government called the Internet Assistance Program has helped people get off pair gains systems, and Senator Kate Lundy has a Website for victims of pair-gains for those who want to add their voices.

1.5 I've been told I'm on a "RIM" and can't get ADSL. What do I do?

A RIM is a "Remote Integrated Multiplexor" and is basically a chunk of the main Telephone exchange broken off and moved closer to an area. These are linked back to the main exchange with optic fibre via a switching mechanism which, you guessed it, is digital and won't work with ADSL because the CMUX needs to be connected to copper lines (not fibre), and the cost and space limitations of providing these inside RIMs has been prohibitive.
However, Telstra are developing a mini-CMUX solution for RIMs, but at this stage there is no information to hand about when this project will be in full swing or when it will be completed. See Senator Kate Lundy's site mentioned above to voice a complaint, and the Internet Assistance Program may also be able to help.

Update: Up to 60% of RIMS will not be capable of having a "mini-mux" fitted. More at Whirlpool.

1.6 What is a line filter?

A Line filter needs to be fitted on each telephone or other device such as a fax machine, Foxtel IQ box (which uses a phone line for pay per view & tends to check in several times daily for firmware updates) or anything else that uses the same line as the ADSL service. They can go anywhere in between the socket and the phone itself but should not be fitted in between the ADSL modem and socket.
Line Filters prevent you hearing the screeching and buzzing noises that the ADSL modem makes, so you can use the line for normal voice etc whilst on-line with ADSL.
They also prevent other devices like the Foxtel IQ box from interfering with the ADSL signal. If you find your ADSL modem can't achieve a "Line Sync" or drops out when the phone rings and other strange behaviour, then one or more of your phones or other devices is either not filtered or has an inadequate filter. (Some brands are better than others in some situations).
Line Filters come in a few different shapes and sizes to suit different situations including special models to fit wall phone sockets. I stock Telequip Filters at my online shop and have found problems with these brands to be extremely rare.

Note:

  • Unused phone sockets (that don't have a device plugged into them) do not need filters.
  • Line filters only work in one direction. If you fit them backwards they won't work properly and can also interfere with the ADSL signal.
  • If you have two or more phones (or a phone and fax, or separate answering machine etc) plugged into a double adapter into a single socket then you can share a single filter by installing the fitler in between the socket and double adapter.

    1.7 What is a line splitter?

    A Line Splitter looks just like a line filter but has two outputs to split the output of a socket so both a telephone and ADSL modem can share the same socket at the same time. One of the outputs of the splitter is filtered for the phone to plug into while the other output is unfiltered for the ADSL modem to plug into. Get these around the wrong way and bad things happen.

    The Telequip DSL008 at my online shop is a purpose built line splitter, but a DIY splitter can be achieved with a normal Line Filter and a Double Adaptor as follows -

    Note: A second double adaptor can be fitted between the filter and phone in the diagram above for several phones or other devices to share one filter.

    1.8 What is a Central Filter?

    Some situations require that a filter is placed in a central location in a building's wiring before it gets to any other devices. These situations are -

  • when the ADSL line is also on a PABX service
  • where a mode 3 Alarm Socket for a back to base Alarm system is present on the ADSL line
  • where any hardwired devices like ringers and antique phones exist on the ADSL line
  • where there are more than four sockets in use using the ADSL line on a premises (This one may be more economics than anything else, but having too many filters in the system may adversely affect modem performance.)

    Central Filters are hard wired units that need to be installed by ACMA licensed technicians. Installation usually involves running a new cable & socket from the Central Filter to the location of the ADSL modem for its exclusive use.
    Central filters cost anything from $30-50.00 and installation can be anything from $1-200.00 depending on the difficulty of the job.
    See the Cabling page for a diagram of a Central Filter setup.

    Free Plug: I stock the Telequip brand of filters at my online shop. Check out the DSL019 central filter which has terminals for hard wiring and also RJ-11 ports.

    1.9 I have a Panasonic Cordless phone and people can't hear me talking with ADSL on.

    This a common failing with many types of Panasonic Cordless phones and certain brands of inline Filters, namely D-Link 10MF & 10CF filters.
    Panasonic's recommendation is to use Telequip (aka Telephone Equipment or "TE") or Digitor brand filters but I have found several other brands like LI Shin, Alcatel & C10 do the trick just fine. However, in some rare cases it has been necessary to join 2 filters together to get the necessary result and in some extremely rare cases (like 1 in 1000) it has been necessary to have a central filter installed as no amount of tinkering with inline filters seems to be able to get it perfect. I'm not sure why these anomalies come up sometimes but I believe it to be a combination of factors like the phone, line conditions, ADSL modem and so on that for some reason won't work together properly in that particular circumstance. While it's certainly worth trying the recommended inline filters first as that will sort out nearly everyone first time and costs much less, if you have no luck I'm yet to hear of a central filter not curing the problem for even these rare ones.
    I have Telequip Filters available at my online shop and we can Express Post them to anywhere in Australia.

    1.10 What's a CMUX?

    A CMUX, "Customer Multiplexor" also known as a DSLAM, is the physical device at the Telephone Exchange responsible for inputting the digital ADSL signal into the copper line pair that runs to your house.
    The jumper block (where all the copper wires plug into) has an input side and an output side and these are identical to look at, so one of the most common faults that occur on new ADSL connections is where these have been jumpered in reverse. This will allow the voice part of the line to work perfectly but the ADSL modem will not achieve a "line sync".

    1.11 What's a DSLAM?

    DSL Access Multiplexor. Same as a CMUX.

    1.12 What is VPI & VCI?

    VPI (Virtual Path Identifier) and VCI (Virtual Channel Identifier) are technical terms that define the way that data is transferred via ADSL connections.
    These values need to be known when configuring an ADSL modem, but the majority of ISPs use VPI of 8 and VCI of 35. These are usually mentioned in the ISP's FAQs.

    1.13 What is PPPoE?

    PPPoE is the most common of several ADSL connection types. PPPoE stands for Point-to-Point Protocol over Ethernet. ie a PPP process similar to dial-up, but using Ethernet as the vehicle rather than a dial-up modem. Just about any modem or Router I can name supports PPPoE and also software applications like Enternet, RASPPPoE & WinPoet.

    1.14 What is PPPoA?

    Point-to-Point Protocol over ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode). Much the same as PPPoE as far as the end user is concerned, but using the ATM interface type rather than Ethernet.
    Most Routers with built-in ADSL modems have the option to use a PPPoA connection type and handle all this for you.
    James Mollison's page goes into detail on these various protocols.

    1.15 What is IPoA?

    Internet Protocol over ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode).
    Also called "Classical IPoA" it is yet another ADSL connection type sometimes referred to as a "routed" connection.
    People specifying this service from their ISP will need a Modem/Router combo unit that can support it (most do). Those intending to utilise a Linux Server or other Router, should ask for a Bridged service.

    1.16 What is bridged Ethernet?

    Similar to IPoA but in this case will work with a standard modem with another Router or Server behind it.

    1.17 What is RFC1483?

    RFC stands for a "Request For Comments" and is made by the Internet Engineering Task Force where an Industry Standard needs to be drafted for an Internet related issue. The final version of the RFC becomes the standard and can't be altered. (Although it can be superseded by a subsequent RFC). RFC1483 is a standardising of the ATM (Asynchronous Transfer Mode) protocol. More info at www.faqs.org.

    1.18 Should I choose a bridged or routed connection?

    Some ISPs give the choice of a "bridged" or "routed" connection and it basically comes down to your choice of equipment -
    Go for a bridged connection if you're planning to use the connection with an existing Router or Server with a (bridged) modem, and the routed connection if you plan to use an ADSL modem/router combo unit. (Make sure that it supports IPoA first).

    1.19 All of these terms are too confusing what do I do?

    The same as I do, which is basically try every option in the modem (there's usually only a half dozen or so) until you find one that works. :)
    Sometimes trial & error is faster than trying to be scientific about it.
    An ISP's FAQs will usually contain details of authentication methods, connection types and suggested modems to help work out which product you should get in advance, and forums like www.whirlpool.net.au are excellent places to find out if other people are using your planned ISP & modem combination successfully and how they went about it.

    1.20 Which modem should I get?

    ADSL modems come with all manner of features to suit various applications and price brackets. Try the Find-A-Router tool to find and compare ADSL modems.

    1.21 Which is better - USB, PCI or Ethernet modems?

    These days you'd be hard pressed to find an ADSL modem that is just a modem so in many cases if you do need a basic bridged modem you'll need to reconfigure a modem/router product to do the job.

    USB & PCI modems sometimes have driver issues between operating systems and will also use resources on your PC but other than that they're cheap as chips and may be all you need if you only have one PC.

    1.22 Do I have to buy a modem that the ISP recommends?

    Not at all.
    ISPs sometimes provide a list of modems they have tested but they may not necessarily have time or incentive to cover others. They generally offer one or two models that you can purchase from them when signing up that they will provide technical assistance for, but be aware that often these same products are available elsewhere or 2nd hand cheaper. There may also be cheaper alternate products that will work fine, but in these cases you will be on your own to obtain technical assistance to set it up. That being said, ADSL protocols are fairly universal and a bit of trial & error using the ISP's configuration details for a different product will generally see you right in no time at all.
    Some ISPs like Telstra sell a modem bundled into the signup fee so you get one whether you want it or not. In these cases if the bundled product is unsuitable, there's usually an option to upgrade to a better (eg Ethernet) modem for a fairly good price, so this may be the better way to go. The upgraded product may still not be entirely suitable in itself but you'll be able to change it to a standard bridge and plug it into a router of your choice later, whereas a cheaper USB modem that comes with the base package may be unusable for the ideal Network setup.

    1.23 When should I buy my modem?

    I highly recommend waiting until you receive notification from your ISP to say your service is active before you order your modem because heaps of new connections fail.

    When signing up with an ADSL ISP you'll be given a pre-approval to say that ADSL is available at your exchange and everything seems to be rosy, however this isn't any guarantee and things regularly go wrong after this point. There may be a fault on your line or not enough space for another connection at the exchange. These may take weeks or months to fix, and in some cases not possible to fix. There are also cases where your phone line is through a different telephone carrier which will prevent connection to some ISPs because of the physical impossibility of connecting your line to the necessary ADSL equipment at the exchange.

    At the OzCableguy online shop we use overnight couriers so you'll rarely be waiting longer than a day for your order but if you want to order your modem ahead of time anyway, at least leave it sealed up in it's box until you get the official nod from your ISP that your connection is live just in case you need to return the modem for a refund. Customers hate buying stuff that has been opened or has obvious signs of use so retailers don't like taking them back in that sort of condition if they're not faulty.

    1.24 How do I make my ADSL modem work with my existing Router?

    The majority of ADSL modems are actually Routers with built-in modems that are configured as Routers by default. To plug these into an existing or other Router, you'll first need to configure them as a "bridges" which is just a fancy name for switching off their routing features so they function as standard modems. How to do this varies from product to product. Some, like the Netgear DM602 & Billion 711CE just have a simple tick box. Others have to be done from a Command Line or by uploading a special config file (Alcatel ST530 & 510). Instructions for the Alcatel Speed Touch Pro are here.

    See also Router FAQ 3.6.

    1.25 What's known about the Alcatel modems?

    The Alcatel Speed Touch series come in several forms. The most common in Australia are the Home and the Pro, and more recently the Speed Touch 530 & 510. There are also some smatterings of the Speed Touch USB series known as the Stingray.
    The older Speed Touch Homes & Pros are almost identical to look at, the difference between them is the Homes need a software Login client on a PC or a Router to make a connection, whereas the Pro, like the new Speed Touch 530 & 510, is a Router with a built-in ADSL modem.
    More information about these modems can be found in my Router Review section & the Speed Touch Pro has it's own page for configuration issues.

    1.26 Can I turn my Speed Touch Home into a Pro?

    Some of you may have heard some gossip going around about a hack to do this, and yes I can verify that it does exist and has been done. However, there is a flaw in the process that will leave you in an extremely vulnerable position with all your username and password details fully exposed for anyone to see.
    Far better to purchase a modem/router that was designed and built to do this or add a router to your existing standard Speed Touch Home. The cost is negligible compared to the risk of the hack.
    Recent changes to the Alcatel firmware may prevent this process now (thankfully).

    1.27 How do I configure my PC for ADSL?

    Unless you have a Router or Router with built-in ADSL modem (in which case consult the product's manual), there are a couple of different software login clients available to allow a connection to ADSL. See the Enternet or RASPPPoE pages, depending on which client you would prefer. Windows XP & Mac OSX have PPPoE clients for connecting to ADSL built into them.
    RASPPPoE works better with ICS in most cases and its similarity to dial-up networking will be of some comfort to many people.

    1.28 Do I need any additional software to connect to ADSL?

    Not necessarily. The majority of available modems also function as Routers which will take care of everything for you without software but this may not always be entirely suitable for the application and may require that the modem is "bridged" and a software login client or different Router is employed.
    For software login clients, I've covered Enternet and RASPPPoE elsewhere on the site, but there are also built-in PPPoE login clients into Windows XP, Mac OSX and many Linux distributions.

    1.29 Which is better, Enternet or RASPPPoE?

    Whichever works for you. Iíve had PCs that will only work with one or the other, so donít be too concerned if you canít get one of them working. It happens!
    However, when it comes to ICS and Win2K or XP, RASPPPoE is definitely the better way to go for the adjusting MSS option which doesn't work using Drtcp with Enternet. This is not as much of a problem with win98 & ME as DrTCP will support the change required to make it work with Enternet.

    RASPPPoE doesn't have support for win95 or Macs.

    1.30 Can ADSL work on Linux and FreeBSD?

    You betcha!

    ADSL uses a PPPoE (Point to Point over Ethernet) connection. All that is needed for Linux then, is a PPPoE login client. Most recent distros have one included but Roaring Penguin has one if you're stuck.

    Checkout the BigPond Broadband.Linux newsgroup to talk to other ADSL Linux users.
    Becsta has written a step by step guide.
    Paul Hoadley has a FreeBSD and BigPond ADSL walk through.
    See also Daemon News.

    1.31 How do I make it go faster?

    See the downloads page.

    1.32 I was promised 512 download speeds but I'm lucky to get 50. Is there something wrong?

    See the downloads page.

    1.33 If I try file transfers or game serving with other ADSL users it doesn't work. Why not?

    If you have a Speed Touch Pro, see the Speed Touch Pro Page

    1.34 How do I send a Fax via my ADSL service?

    Well, you can't. At least not in the normal manner. Faxing requires an Analogue line with a dial tone. Whereas ADSL is a digital service that piggy backs over your copper phone line using it as a medium. It is entirely separate to the telephone service and can't dial out or in as such.
    The only option here is to either plug a 56k modem for this (it can work on the same line at the same time with a line filter) or use one of the many Internet to Fax services available. See Google for more.

    1.35 What is ADSL2/2+?

    ADSL1 that we have now can go up to 8mbs up to around 4.5km - 6km (depending on who you talk to) from the Exchange.
    ADSL2 is a variation on the current ADSL standard that can go up to 12mbs up to around 7km from the Exchange.
    ADSL2+ can go up to 24mbs within 1.5km of the Exchange and about half that beyond that distance.

    All modems available at my online shop support ADSL2/2+ now and are still backwards compatible with ADSL1.


    2.0 Enternet


    Update: Enternet is/was a software PPPoE client to connect to ADSL. Routers with built-in PPPoE & PPPoA clients have become the standard now but I'll leave this info here for historical value.

    2.1 How do I install Enternet?
    2.2 How do I install Enternet on Macintosh?
    2.3 Is there an update of Enternet for BigPond users available for download?
    2.4 I keep getting an error message " failed on create device" when I try to install. What's with that?
    2.5 It says "no adapters bound to tcp/ip...". What's that mean?
    2.6 It froze up and I had to kill it with ctrl,alt & delete. Now when I try to connect, it says I'm already connected?
    2.7 When I try to connect, it says "failed to load tap".
    2.8 When I try to connect, it keeps saying "authentication error".
    2.9 Whenever I open Internet Explorer or Outlook Express, it says "no connection available. Click connect or try again."
    2.10 It lets me log in, but I can't access anything.
    2.11 It keeps launching continuously at boot up.
    2.12 It keeps telling me the Hard Drive's full but I know it's not. What gives?
    2.13 Are there any more FAQs for Enternet?
    2.14 Can Internet Connection Sharing work with Enternet? If so, how?


    2.1 How do I install Enternet?

    It's pretty straight forward once the CD is running. It starts with a Macromedia Flash screen so if you don't have Flash installed you'll get a weird error. You'll need to explore the CD to the setup.exe if your CD drive is D drive, then double click My Computer and explore to D:/Enternet and double click setup.exe.
    Once you reboot, you'll have a new folder on your desktop. Open it and select Create a new profile and follow your nose.

    Do not choose the option to update Internet Explorer. It is a customised version which will configure outdated proxy details and stop your browser from working.

    2.2 How do I install Enternet on Macintosh?

    Instructions for getting a Mac working with ADSL are included on the Installation CD.

    However, to summarise-

  • Run the installation CD and restart.
  • Go to Control Panels > TCP/IP.
  • Set to connect by "Enternet" (not Ethernet)
  • Using PPP
  • DNS 1.2.3.4 and suffix vic.bigpond.net.au
  • Close and save.
  • Double Click the NTS alias and create a profile
  • Click "connect" on the new profile you created and away it'll go.

    The only bug I've ever seen was a conflict on one particular G3 running OS 8.6 with a Firewire extension. In this case, every time I tried to connect, I'd get an error message about not having chosen "Enternet" in the TCP/IP setup. (Which I had) After disabling the Firewire plugin in the Extension Manager, it worked perfectly.
    Other identical systems have not had this problem, which is frustrating and weird!

    Check out MacBigPond FAQ for more info about Macs with Broadband.

    2.3 Is there an update of Enternet for BigPond users available for download?

    Yes. Version 1.4 is available for download from update-server. Download either the zip or exe, depending on if you have Winzip or not.
    I strongly recommend this update, particularly for Win2K users or if ICS is being used.

    2.4 I keep getting an error message " failed on create device" when I try to install. What's with that?

    If you get that error during installation it is usually caused by another program running in the background at the time. (Cleansweep will cause this particular error.) Cancel the installation and end all nonessential tasks with ctrl, alt, del. The only ones that must be running are Explorer and Systray. If you end either of these, windows will crash.

    2.5 It says "no adapters bound to tcp/ip...". What's that mean?

    If you get the error "no adapters bound to TCP/IP bla, bla, bla...", check in your network properties that there is a TCP/IP stack bound to the network card that the modem is plugged into. If there is, reboot and try again.

    2.6 It froze up and I had to kill it with ctrl,alt & delete. Now when I try to connect, it says I'm already connected?

    Reboot to fix this.
    Occasionally, Telstra's authentication server will not have released your previous connection. You will need to ring technical support on 133933 to get them to manually release it, otherwise it should sort itself out after some time between 15 mins - 1 hour.

    2.7 When I try to connect, it says "failed to load tap".

    If you get the "failed to load tap" error message, go to connections > settings > advanced and change "filter driver" to "protocol driver" and it'll go.

    2.8 When I try to connect, it keeps saying "authentication error".

    "Authentication error" means it doesn't recognise the username and/or password. This is most commonly a result of not putting the necessary @bigpond after your username. Occasionally you may need to ring technical support for them to issue a new password.

    2.9 Whenever I open Internet Explorer or Outlook Express, it says "no connection available. Click connect or try again."

    Versions of 98, may warn "no connection available. Work off-line or try again". Click "try again" and it'll go. Updating the software as mentioned above cures it 80% of the time. If not, switch to RASPPPoE.

    2.10 It lets me log in, but I can't access anything.

    If you use windows 98 & ME ICS, you'll find that once ICS is enabled, you'll be able to login but not be able to do anything. Do the update as above or select "DHCP" instead of "private API" in connections > settings > advanced.

    2.11 It keeps launching continuously at boot up.

    If you're a Win2K or NT user, do NOT tick the box in "connections" > "settings" to launch on windows start up in version 1.2 as supplied on the Telstra CD. This has a nasty bug and will cause it to "loop" and launch continuously, which you'll be unable to stop. Do the update if you want that feature to work.

    2.12 It keeps telling me the Hard Drive's full but I know it's not. What gives?

    Leprechaun Anti Virus users will find they get a strange error about the hard drive being full when they try to install Enternet. Right-click the "M" in the system tray and untick all the macros. They'll come back on once you reboot after the installation.

    2.13 Are there any more FAQs for Enternet?

    See the Enternet Homepage.

    2.14 Can Internet Connection Sharing work with Enternet? If so, how?

    Yes. See the Enternet installation guide.


    3.0 RASPPPoE


    Update: RASPPPoE is/was a software PPPoE client to connect to ADSL. Routers with built-in PPPoE & PPPoA clients have become the standard now but I'll leave this info here for historical value.

    3.1 Where do I get RASPPPoE?
    3.2 How do I install RASPPPoE?
    3.3 Are there any known problems with RASPPPoE?
    3.4 I get told that I don't have a dial up adaptor installed. What gives?
    3.5 I try to connect and it keeps telling me the password is wrong.


    1.1 Where do I get RASPPPoE?

    From Robert Schlabbach's Site.

    1.2 How do I install RASPPPoE?

    It comes with instructions but they're a little wordy. See the RASPPPoE guide for a simpler walkthrough.

    1.3 Are there any known problems with RASPPPoE?

    If you get a warning about needing to update NDIS drivers be sure to take heed. You'll save yourself some odd problems down the track like it not accepting your password. The update can be downloaded from Microsoft.

    1.4 I get told that I don't have a dial up adaptor installed. What gives?

    Win98 & ME users will need to check in control panel > network properties that it is installed.
    If not, win98 users click on "add" and "adaptor" select "Microsoft" from the list and choose dial up adaptor. Then click OK until asked to reboot and do so.
    ME users will need to click "Start" > "Settings" > "Dial up Networking" and then click "make new connection". Just enter bogus details (123456 for the Phone No etc) and when you click "finish", you should get a message saying that it needs to install the Microsoft Dial Up Adaptor. Just click OK and you're laughing. You can then delete the bogus Dial Up account if you wish.

    1.5 I try to connect and it keeps telling me the password is wrong.

    This is most commonly a result of not putting the necessary @bigpond after your username. Occasionally you may need to ring technical support for them to issue a new password.


    4.0 Networking with ADSL

    4.1 Do I have to install a second network card if I have a hub?
    4.2 How do I share an ADSL connection on a Network?
    4.3 What's the easiest and cheapest way to share ADSL on my PC Network?
    4.4 How do I set up Microsoft Internet Connection Sharing with ADSL?
    4.5 How do I share ADSL on a Macintosh Network?
    4.6 How do I share ADSL on a Linux Network?
    4.7 How do I share ADSL using NT4 Small Business Server?
    4.8 What settings should the client PCs have?
    4.9 The clients seem to be connecting but nothing much is happening. What's the trick?
    4.10 My pings go through the roof when someone else on my Network is online at the same time. Is there a fix?
    4.11 Whenever I activate Internet connection Sharing I can't get on-line. Why?


    4.1 Do I have to install a second network card if I have a hub?

    ADSL uses Point to Point over Ethernet, not Ethernet, so it is possible to get away a single NIC in the Server by plugging the modem straight into a hub. You'll need a 10 or 10/100 hub (It won't work in a 100 base hub) and plug it into the uplink port. If you don't have an uplink port, or it's already used, you'll need a crossover cable.

    To explain this a bit more, if you look in your Network properties, you'll see at least two adapters One is the actual adaptor and the other is a virtual adaptor. With Enternet, it's the NTS PPPoE Adaptor and with RASPPPoE it's the dial-up adaptor. This virtual adaptor piggy backs off the actual adaptor to physically function.
    So when using ICS, we still have the prerequisite two adapters necessary (one for local and one for Internet), and away it goes.
    When using ADSL with two Network Cards, the TCP/IP protocol on the Card plugged into the modem is not used, so I recommend putting a dummy IP address there so that the computer stops looking for one. Not doing this has had the effect of slowing down some older computers, particularly when booting up.

    Note: If you have a modem/Router unit, it will do all of the Internet Sharing and security for you by simply plugging it straight into your hub and configuring your PCs to see it.

    4.2 How do I share an ADSL connection on a Network?

    There are three basic methods with various advantages and disadvantages.

    1. Proxy Server. This involves setting up a PC to act as a Gateway to the rest of the LAN using proxy software like Wingate, proxy plus, AnalogX proxy etc. There are dozens to choose from. See Practically Networked for stacks of Free Proxy software. They range from the small, simple and free AnalogX application to more advanced ones with features like logging what everyone's been up to on the net and various other rules and permissions.

    2. Network Address Translation. Similar to set up as above but different in how it works. Common NAT applications include Microsoft's Internet Connection Sharing (built into all Windows Operating Systems since 98 SE), Sygate and Winroute.

    3. Routers. A router is fairly inexpensive and the ultimate pain-free solution for sharing a Broadband Internet connection. The beauty of these things is, you plug the modem into one side of it and your LAN into the other and it takes care of all the logging in to the ISP, sharing the connection to a Local Area Network and securing you from Hackers. The Speed Touch Pro supplied by Telstra is a Router with a built-in ADSL modem, and there are many other similar units available.

    See the hardware page to find out more about Routers.

    4.3 What's the easiest and cheapest way to share ADSL on my PC Network?

    If you don't have a modem that also functions as a Router, you'll need to do this with software. Most modems currently available can also function as Routers so you've just got to plug it into a hub or switch and configure your PCs to see it and away you'll go.

    If you need to do it with software, AnalogX Proxy is a nice, small, simple and free and it comes with all the installation instructions you should need, but there a couple of traps. It opens a heap of ports, creating a security risk, by default.
    To work around this you'll need to take some precautions.

  • Right click the icon in the system tray and select "configure".
  • Switch off all ports except http.
  • Use only Hotmail in Outlook Express on the client PCs.

    Note: If you must use POP email on the clients, BlackIce Defender is a necessity as it's the only firewall I have found to give adequate protection in this scenario.
    The current version has a bug that will not allow email sending from the client PCs (apart from Hotmail).

    4.4 How do I set up Microsoft Internet Connection Sharing with ADSL?

    Take your pick of Enternet or RASPPPoE.

    4.5 How do I share ADSL on a Macintosh Network?

    I believe the simplest and most cost effective solution to sharing an ADSL connection on a Mac network would be to install a hardware router like the Airport or one of the cheaper ones as mentioned on the Hardware page.

    Alternatively, if you're with BigPond and already have a hub, you could plug the ADSL modem into an uplink port and apply for extra usernames for each of the machines that require simultaneous Internet connections. ($11.00 each/month)

    There are also a variety of proxy-servers available that will allow you to share a connection. Sustainable softworks has a few good products worth checking out.

    Also check out opendoor for some recommended firewall products. (Thanks Syd)

    If you have a windows server with Mac clients, configuration details are here.

    See the MacBigPond FAQ for more info about Macs with Broadband.

    4.6 How do I share ADSL on a Linux Network?

    See Practically Networked for stacks of Free Proxy software.
    Checkout the BigPond Broadband.Linux newsgroup to talk to other ADSL Linux users.
    Becsta has written a step by step guide.
    Paul Hoadley has a FreeBSD and BigPond ADSL walk through.
    See also Daemon News.

    4.7 How do I share ADSL using NT4 Small Business Server?

    If you've had a go at this operating system for use on BigPond, you've probably discovered that it wasn't designed to work with a Dynamic IP.
    Never fear! All is not lost. I've managed to get this one working on ADSL using my limited experience in this area. The ADSL software will change the Network Properties automatically to the Dynamic IP when it logs on to BigPond, so you can give it any old IP when configuring.
    Other than that, I fitted a second network card with a "dummy" IP in a different IP range for the modem to plug into, and then used the Internet wizard in the SBS console selecting the "using a router" (even though it's not a router) option. (I set the second NIC's dummy IP as the router address.)
    Although this got things working, I am not overly confident that it is the best way of doing it. I have since learnt that uninstalling DHCP Server and manually assigning IPs to the client PCs is the way to go. However, my opinion is that a Hardware router should be used between the modem and the SBS server for proper security and Internet connection. This OS is meant to be set up by Microsoft certified personnel and my amateur dabblings are just for interest sake.
    See also a page from Jared with info on Win2K Server and NAT.

    4.8 What settings should the client PCs have?

    Take your pick of Enternet or RASPPPoE.
    If you have a Router, consult its manual for client PC settings.

    4.9 The clients seem to be connecting but nothing much is happening. What's the trick?

    This is generally an MTU issue that I've covered on the Enternet and RASPPPoE guides. XP users, see the Enternet guide if you're using XP's built-in PPPoE client. RASPPPoE is probably still a better option with XP.
    Alternatively it may be a misconfiguration if using static IPs on the client PCs with ICS or a Router. See the answer above.

    4.10 My pings go through the roof when someone else on my Network is online at the same time. Is there a fix?

    This generally happens if you're on a 256 kbs plan. Upgrading to a 512 plan generally cures it, but there are occasional exceptions.

    4.11 Whenever I activate Internet connection Sharing I can't get on-line. Why?

    This is a minor problem that happens due to a bug in the Enternet software. See the Enternet guide for the fix.