Sunday, August 31, 2008

BSNL EvDO finally ... sorry nope ... oops yes ... well maybe

Seem to be getting EvDO intermittantly. The maximum data transfer reached was around 400kbps. Strangely though the moment I get EvDO only when the strength is low (2-3bars). If I re-position the device for better signal strength (3-4bars) I get transferred to 1xRTT. When it shifts to EvDO, the indicator for roaming mode is also enabled. So I am assuming it is connecting to some other tower where EvDO has been properly configured.

Saturday, August 30, 2008

3G Signal Strength Indicator on Linux

Have not been able to find any signal strength indicator for 3G devices on Linux. So unable to measure the signal strength. However the 'at+csq' command can be used to find the signal strength. It returns a number between 0 and 31 (0 being minimum and 31 being the maximum strength).
The problem was how to convert it to power measurements (dB). Fortunately I found a solution to convert the numbers to dB measurements at http://mybroadband.co.za/vb/archive/index.php/t-61703.html .

Planning to write a script for displaying the signal strength in python.

BSNL EvDO finally ... sorry nope

With internet connectivity at my campus being unreliable and unsuitable for voice/video chat thanks to the proxy not responding frequently, and introducing long delays, I finally got an EvDO connection from BSNL. When I went there to the exchange to get the device, I found that it was configured as 1xRTT and not 1xEvDO. So sat with the engineer till he checked with the higher officials who were giving confusing answers, with some saying that EvDO is not yet enabled in India etc. But the engineer did not take it and finally managed to get through the right officer to configure it. Strangely it refused to detect a network when I got to my place. After another visit to the exchange, was informed of some configuration problems with EvDO. So currently got it reconfigured to 1xRTT. At least it works now. Was told it would be configured for EvDO once it was functioning properly.

Was able to get it up and running on Ubuntu/Hardy using the airprime driver. However could not get the same done on Fedora 7 and Fedora 9. Not sure how it works on other Linux distros.

Friday, August 22, 2008

BSNL EvDO in Hyderabad

Just happened to know that BSNL is (finally) providing EvDO in Hyderabad (atleast in some areas). Wonder why EvDO is being so poorly advertised. Just check with BSNL's Customer Service Center in your area to enquire about it's availability. You could either pay Rs. 3500 to own the USB modem, and pay monthly amount of Rs. 550/month for unlimited internet access or pay Rs. 1000 (security deposit) and 200/month as rental for the device. Bandwidth (download) upto 2.4Mbps is supported. www.bsnl.co.in does not have the updated tariff. So for the current tariff check http://chennai.bsnl.co.in/News/EVDO.htm