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Thread: WinModem what's the difference?

  1. #1
    Developer Extraordinar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002

    WinModem what's the difference?

    Hey, just wondering what the difference between a WinModem and a Hardware Modem? Is there anyway to get a WinModem to work in Linux?
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  2. #2
    Junior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    a WinModem relies on software & drivers to work, a hardware modem is kinda a generic modem that doesn't rely on software to work. A lot of hardware modems are external, or at least the ones which people use with linux. I think a very select few WinModems may be supported in Linux, but i'm not totally sure.

  3. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Aug 2002
    Some types of hardware cannot presently be handled by GNU/Linux, either because the support is still in an experimental stage, because nobody has written a driver for the devices in question, or because it has been decided for valid reasons that they cannot be supported. For example:

    winmodems, also called controller-less modems or software modems. Support for these peripherals is currently very sparse. Drivers exist, but are binary only and for a limited range of kernel versions. The difference between a "hardware" modem and a winmodem is that a winmodem cannot function without a special driver which emulates a large number of a hardware modem's functions. You can communicate with a hardware modem by sending it a series of commands, which cannot be done with a winmodem without special drivers (this also explains why GNU/Linux does not need drivers for the modems: it only gives access to the serial port, with an external program sending the commands). If your modem is PCI, it is most likely, but not necessarily, a software modem...

    If your modem is a PCI modem, as the root user look at the output of cat /proc/pci . This will tell you the I/O port and the IRQ of the device. Then use the setserial command (for our example, the I/O address is 0xb400 and the IRQ is 10) as follows: setserial /dev/ttyS3 port 0xb400 irq 10 UART 16550A
    Then see if you can query you modem using minicom or Kppp. If it doesn't work, you may have a software modem. If it does work, create the file /etc/rc.d/rc.setserial and place the appropriate setserial command line in it.

    A recent project is trying to make software modems work under GNU/Linux. If you happen to have this type of hardware in your machine, you may have a look at linmodems and modems and winmodems.
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  4. #4
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2002
    WinModems lack a certain chipset. Winbloze emulates this chipset to make the modem work. This is done to supposedly make it work 'better'. Linux lacks the ability to emulate the chipset{in most cases}. Therefore, a WinModem will not run under Linux, unless you can force Linux to emulate that chipset, in which case, your WinModem will then work.

  5. #5
    Gray Haired Old Fart aeallison's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jul 2002
    Buffalo, Missouri USA
    Regardless of wheather it is a win or lin modem, it will obviously take what it needs in order to emulate the missing chipset from your CPU thereby slowing your computer by tieing up CPU resources. I always opt for the "hardware" modems in any system I build, even if I have to find it in a flea market or somewhere, as far as I know all external modems are "hardware modems.
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  6. #6
    actually, it's very conceivable to write a universal software-modem driver that will emulate this chipset for Linux. Linux drivers dont typically do this, but the beauty of this os is in the fact : you can do pretty mcuh anything. It may require the creation of a new package, as this is a very low-level function performed by windows DUN. But it can most definately be done!
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  7. #7
    Senior Member
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    Jun 2002
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  8. #8
    AO Curmudgeon rcgreen's Avatar
    Join Date
    Nov 2001
    Originally posted here by digitalgadfly
    Some types of hardware cannot presently be handled by GNU/Linux, either because the support is still in an experimental stage, because nobody has written a driver for the devices in question,
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  9. #9
    Join Date
    Oct 2001
    *inmodems cause of there using drivers and software to run slow down your computer cause it basicly steals CPU cycles from the main CPU, where as socalled 'hardware modems' have there own processor to do all the work for them insted of passing it off like a *inmodem.

    also, did you research this question before asking? cause ive answered this tons of times.....

    also also, my linmodem works fine. it runs just the way i need it to under linux. just lucky i guess...... i tend to notice that if a *inmodem is in a laptop its more likely to get suported cause there not as easy and cheep to switch out.......

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