Category Archives: Broadband

Universal Broadband by 2015 – will Radio

Universal Broadband by 2015 – will Radio Frequencies auction affect it?

Andrew Percy: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Olympics, Media and Sport whether he has assessed the potential effects on the Government’s commitment to provide universal broadband coverage by 2015 if the auction of the 800MHz and 2,600MHz spectrum does not take place by mid 2012. [70374]

Mr Vaizey [holding answer 7 September 2011]: The timing of the auction is unlikely to impact on the delivery of universal broadband coverage by 2015.

© Parliamentary material is reproduced with the permission of the Controller of HMSO on behalf of Parliament. Licence No: P2011000006

Enable Network Address Translation (NAT) on Linux

Enabling Network Address Translation on Linux is pretty simple. I use it to enable my local network to use a Mobile Broadband stick connected to an old laptop, but this will work for any interface, not just for Mobile Broadband.

What I have is a simple bash script stored in root’s home directory. Then when I first connect to the net I run this script (as root) which configures NAT and the rest of the network can then access the net.

Note: The script only needs to be run once per reboot, and the net connection needs to be up when it’s run. However if the net connection is restarted, as long as the machine has not been rebooted, the Linux kernel keeps the settings.

Here’s the script:


iptables -t nat -A POSTROUTING -s $NET -o $INT -j MASQUERADE
iptables -A FORWARD -s $NET -o $INT -j ACCEPT
iptables -A FORWARD -d $NET -m state --state ESTABLISHED,RELATED -i $INT -j ACCEPT
echo 1 >/proc/sys/net/ipv4/ip_forward

echo "Network $NET is now natted over $INT"

For this to work on your local machine, you simply need to edit the first two lines:

  • INT= the network interface to run Network Address Translation. hso0 here is for the Option modem I’m using on this specific laptop, but it could easily be ppp0 etc.
  • NET= the local network you want to allow access to the NAT.

If you don’t know what to use for INT, simply run ifconfig both before and after you connect to the net using your broadband, and the additional interface is more than likely the port to use.

Connecting to both local lan and 3’s 3G Dongle on the Mac

A problem reported elsewhere on the net with 3’s 3G Broadband dongles is that while you are connected to the net it disconnects you from your local lan preventing you from accessing both. I presume its to prevent people from sharing the broadband without using their dedicated router which they sell to connect the dongle direct to the lan.

Anyhow the main problem for me is that when using a VPN with the dongle, the Mac could connect to the remote network fine, but Windows or Linux running inside VMWare could not as the dongle broke the network. This was causing me problems as I need to access MSSQL on the odd occasion.

Anyhow I’ve managed to figure out a way to allow the local lan to be connected at the same time with the dongle. In fact it’s so simple it’s stupid and I’m surprised no one has documented this anywhere else online – at least I never found it and various forums I’ve seen this question on don’t have this solution.

The trick is:

  1. Connect to the net
  2. Open System Preferences and click on Network
  3. You should see 3Connect in the Location dropdown – if not make sure it’s visible
  4. On the left you should see the list of interfaces (Ethernet, Bluetooth etc) all greyed out.
  5. Click on the + at the bottom left corner of that list and a popup appears.
  6. Select Ethernet in the Interface dropdown then press Create
  7. Now if you use DHCP like I do thats it – DHCP will kick in within a few seconds.
  8. If you don’t use DHCP then simply configure the new interface with a local static IP.

That’s it – nice and simple. Your milage may vary with this, but at least it worked for me.

Here’s the screenshot where you can see Ethernet 2 connected and the Dongle (disconnected when I took this screenshot):