How to Install a Huawei E220 Modem in Ubuntu Linux


The Huawei E220 modem is a powerful device capable of internet speeds of up to 3.6 Mbps. Whereas its' set up in windows is relatively easy; it can be a bit of a headache in Ubuntu Linux and other Linux versions.

The setup method described here has been tested with Ubuntu Linux version 8.04 (hardy heron). To begin with, ensure that you have wvdial installed. There are two ways of establishing if you have wvdial installed, these are;

  1. open the synaptic package manager (Main menu> System> Administration> Synaptic Package Manager) and scroll through the list of installed items to see if it is included, or,
  2. open a terminal and type this code: sudo apt-get install wvdial

Once you have your wvdial installed, ensure your modem is plugged into an available USP port. Then in your terminal type this code,

Sudo wvdialconf

This command reads all of the settings you will need directly from your modem and writes them to a file called wvdial.conf. Type another command in your terminal as follows;

sudo gedit / etc / wvdial

This will invoke your text editor (gedit) to open the file at location /etc/wvdial.conf, with administrative privileges (sudo). The file will look something like this:

[Dialer Defaults] Init1 = ATZ Init2 = ATQ0 V1 E1 S0 = 0 & C1 & D2 + FCLASS = 0 Modem Type = Analog Modem Baud = 9600 New PPPD = yes Modem = / dev / ttyUSB0 ISDN = 0; Address Phone; Password; Username

The Phone, Password and Username are not specified and are also preceded by a semicolon followed by a space. First of all delete the semicolon's and spaces so that P, P and U respectively are the first characters on their lines. Next following the same format as the completed fields add an equal sign (=) to each line and give them a value, so you should have something that looks like this.

[Dialer Defaults] Init1 = ATZ Init2 = ATQ0 V1 E1 S0 = 0 & C1 & D2 + FCLASS = 0 Modem Type = Analog Modem Baud = 9600 New PPPD = yes Modem = / dev / ttyUSB0 ISDN = 0 Phone = * 99 # Password = Anything username = Anything

The phone number depends on your Internet Service Provider and may not necessarily be * 99 #. You can confirm your provider's number by looking it up on their website. If you still can not get it then contact your provider.

Before you save the file and exit, make a note of the second word in the first line, in the case of my example (Defaults). This is the name of the profile you will need to invoke for a connection. Press Alt-F2 and type this code;

wvdial Defaults

Or replace the word '' Defaults '' with whatever was in the first line of your wvdial.conf.

If you wish for your modem to connect automatically at log on, take your mouse to the panel menu and navigate through System, Preferences, Sessions and under the "Startup Programs" Tab, click the "Add" button and where it says "Command" type this code:

wvdial Defaults

Be sure also to fill in the "Name" box, but what you type in there is up to you, simply "Huawei" or "E220" may be ideal for your own future reference. Open your browser and you should be up and running. If you get a message saying "Offline Mode" This is just a default setting in Firefox, simply click on "File" in the browser's menu and in the tool bar de-select "Work offline".

Finally, if you are still unable to connect, visit any of the numerous forums on the internet such as and post a question. You should get a useful answer within a short time.


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