What Modem will absolutely work with Linux?


I’m not going to muck around with what I’ve got anymore. I will buy anything that will work out of the box.

Ah ha ha, I feel your pain man.

Got 11 or 12 distros here, only 2 of them work with my modem…

I can’t give you a definitive answer, though perhaps I can offer some advice -
Modern ‘modems’ are little more than a hardware interface between a phone line and a pc. As such, much of the actual modem functionality is provided by the system cpu. This is good because it’s cheap, but bad because you need more in the way of software drivers…

Generally speaking, you’ll have a much grater chance of success in using a dial-up modem if you have an external unit. Generally this type of modem is a full hardware modem and performs all it’s own work.
(pretty much) Always, they’re more expensive. This type of modem typically connects via a serial connection. NOT every model of this type will work, though you are far more likely to have success with one.

Perhaps it would be worth choosing a flavour of Linux, then getting a modem known to work well with it.

As an aside, I have found that by running various linux distros inside a win32 version of qemu virtual pc, that a virtual network is emulated, and I can get internet access with distros that won’t talk to my modem, since they’re getting internet access over a ‘network’ consisting of my real pc runing windows and the virtual one running linux. Very slow, but interesting as a curiosity…

Uh… Get an old one on Ebay? Older ones tend to have higher chance of drivers being written.

However, external modems always work no matter what. I recommend this.

I guess I should add that I’ve got a 2000 era US Robotics external serial modem that used to work GREAT with Mandrake 7.2. No install problems at all. Ubuntu however will not talk to it.

I had to hook it up (to my new PC) through a serial>USB convertor. The cable appeared to be working, but all I got was gobbledy-gook out of the modem.

The modem definitely works. I’m using it right now under Windows. It is perfect.

If anyone is pyscho-interested in troubleshooting this arrangement, I can point you to all the threads where I attempted to make it work in the past. You will be up for some reading.

Go to DELL,
they sell desktop systems pre built with linux

I really need to determine if I a Linux-only solution can meet my needs before buying a Linux-only computer. I’m not ruling it out, but it’s not the right step for right now.

sorry I mis read the post

any non-winmodem should work for you.

In 2003, I was able to go to any electronics shop, buy the cheapest modem I could find, then pay http://www.linuxant.com/drivers/ for the drivers, and everything worked out fine on Linux.

Things shouldn’t be more difficult now… but you probably still have to pay for drivers.

Quoted for agreement.

Also, Winmodems suck. You get better performance out of modems with their own hardware. Winmodems rely on software emulation to function.

If I was buying a new modem, I’d probably buy this one:


…and, oddly enough, I may need to buy one soon…

I have no idea whether or not it will work for you; however, we used these US Robotics external modems for many years at work, and they worked well. I probably shouldn’t have gotten rid of mine…

knellotron - thanks for the suggestion, I may try them.

Sarah - That’s what I’ve got, except mine is V.90 instead of V.92. I wonder what the difference is?

I can’t believe new ones are still using serial cables. Amazing. My 2 yr old computer doesn’t even have a serial port.

I think they updated the spec slightly; maybe better performance on phone connections of marginal quality? Dunno.

I can’t believe new ones are still using serial cables. Amazing. My 2 yr old computer doesn’t even have a serial port.
Well, oddly enough, PC’s aren’t the only things in the world that use modems! And compared to USB, serial is very simple to design for and program, so it’s still popular for embedded control and such things.