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Success: Potato > LinkSys > SDSL > LAN

Success Thanks to This List!

Some of you may remember a request for help I posted here back in May,
2000, asking for guidance preparing my Debian 486DX, firewall-to-be, box
for an imminent SDSL connection. If interested, the thread starts here
in the archives:


Well, this is merely a payback report for all the help I got.

Backgrounder: I am fairly new to Linux...

First Red Hat, (was 6.0) now 6.1, install on a PII 350, (was 32Mb) now
128Mb RAM, (was 3.5Gb) now 17Gb HDD, box in April, 1999.

And even _newer_ to Debian...

First Debian install (Slink thanks to a base-only ISO burn by a good
spirit at our local LUG) on a circa 1992 'Goodwill Special' ($120 and,
would you believe, all the hardware was Linux compatible!?) 486DX 66,
(was 24Mb) now 64Mb RAM (thanks to an IRC sweetheart who sent me some of
her old SIMM's) in February, 2000. I apt-get dist-upgrade'd to Potato in
April, 2000. It was so easy I am now considering Woody. Somebody stop

Well, when the SDSL guy got around to installing me, it was on a Friday,
of course,...and guess what?...I had no network cards in either box
(decisions, decisions)...which may have been a good thing since the SDSL
guy didn't know squat from Linux.

After he made a successful connection from his laptop via Windows2K, I
rushed out to buy some NIC's with only the input I'd received from the
debian-user list as a guide. I wanted to play right away!

Sonuvagun, nobody in town had the heads on favorite, the NetGear
FA-310TX, in stock. But, Best Buy had one NetGear FA-311TX left, which,
the salesguy assured me, said right on the box, "supports Linux"...

NOTE: It does not!

Well, I bought the NetGear FA-311TX with the understanding I could
return it if it didn't work. BUT, I also stopped into Baillo's (a local
electronics store) and bought two LinkSys EtherFast 10/100 Lan Cards as
a weekend fallback.

I had visited both the NetGear and the LinkSys websites beforehand.
Needless to say, I will give only one here:


IMHO, LinkSys _SUPPORTS_ Linux at-the-core, and NetGear would love
someday to be able to do so.

Anyway, when the NetGear card failed, instead of whipping over to their
support page (which I later learned more or less tells you at the very
end "well, we don't really support Linux"), I just ripped out the
NetGear (admittedly maverick) FA-311TX card and substituted one of the
LinkSys cards in the 486DX, firewall-to-be, Debian box.

Holy Smoke! Sex should work like this. With minimal configuring Debian
got _With_It_!

All of a sudden, I am in communication with my FlowPoint 2200 SDSL
router, with my ISP, and! my own freaking, firewall-to-be, Debian box.
Ping left, ping right, ping out...it all worked. Ping in was yet to

I still had this second LinkSys card and no real local network yet,

So, I went back to Baillo's (the local electronics store) and bought
another LinkSys card AND a LinkSys (now write this down) EtherFast
10/100 Auto-Sensing 5-Port Workgroup Hub (cost: $79.88...if you deduct
the shipping charges you can't do much better online, and I wanted it

I installed both the two other LinkSys cards, one in the Debian,
firewall-to-be, box, and one in the Red Hat PII and cabled them through
the LinkSys 5-Port Hub. Which now has them talking to each other at

BTW, just in case you didn't know, I am one of those people who has
never removed a computer's case cover before except to read numbers off
of chips for people who were trying to help me. 

Ok, I'm not famous for saying a lot of positive things about Red Hat.
But, when I decided to use Red Hat's 'PnP' boot routine to configure the
new hardware, I was impressed. It asked me if I wanted it to configure
the network, and if so what was the IP address I wanted for the new
interface? I entered the IP addy. It filled in the rest and 'Wham, Bam,
Thank You Ma'am,' I was configured.

Suddenly, I had a working SDSL connection under my control, a working
LAN under my control, and a lot more to learn.

Hope this helps someone.

And say, I've recently noticed another very popular female on these
lists: [ANN]. Could anyone tell me if [ANN] is related to Tia? Could
they possibly be _twins_?! Be still my heart! :)

Thanks to the debian-user list,


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