Aug 101999

Configuring FreeBSD for dial-in service *

This article talks about how you can configure FreeBSD to accept incoming connections over a modem (i.e. a dial-in service).  This will be done via PPP.

See also which I’m told is quite good.

Where to start

The first place I started was with the FreeBSD Handbook.  I went straight to the PPP and Slip section.   You should scroll down until you see Receiving incoming calls with ppp.    I also used Dialin Service.

I installed 3.2-RELEASE and mgetty+sendfax on both machines.

Where I stopped

Well, that was about it.  I didn’t continue.  Then NutBoy on Undernet sent me the following.  I have not tried this.  Comments on this article will be appreciated.

NutBoy’s article (

I decided I’d try to set up my dual 450 box for dialin service, so when I was away or at work  I could dial in on my second line and connect to the Internet.  I had many many problems and this will show you what exactly to check.

I started out with the dial-in section in the FreeBSD Handbook which ended up being semi-useless and outdated as I am running a 3.2-stable machine.

What I ended up doing was:

in /etc/rc.conf:

enable proxy

I used getty, not mgetty.

Add a new user whom you want to let use ppp.  In this test circumstance, I used the user "ppp" with home being /home/ppp and shell being /etc/ppp/ppp-shell.


IDENT=`echo $0 | sed -e 's/^.*-\(.*\)$/\1/'`

if [ x$IDENT = xdialup ]; then
IDENT=`basename $TTY`

echo "PPP for $CALLEDAS on $TTY"
echo "Starting PPP for $IDENT"

exec /usr/sbin/ppp -direct $IDENT

I then made 2 files in the ppp home directory:

-r--r--r-- 1 root wheel 0 Jul 26 05:43 .hushlogin
-r--r--r-- 1 root wheel 0 Jul 26 05:45 .rhosts

I then added a /etc/ppp/ppp.conf script:

enable pap
enable passwdauth
set ifaddr
enable proxy

This set the dialin with the IP

I then added a /etc/ppp/ppp.linkup addition:

add netmask HISADDR

I then made a ppp.secret addition (for use with PAP).  If you aren’t using PAP you will not need this:

# Authname Authkey Peer's IP address

ppp password

After that I checked /etc/ttys and /etc/gettytab and enabled ttyd0 and made sure that a reasonable speed setting was there and placed.

After all this I was ready to try…..Nothing….the box wouldn’t answer the phone.

Two days later:

I realized that my modem isn’t ansering and there is no setup utility to change the nvram.  There are also no jumpers to make it autoanswer.  Off to the store.   I picked up a new modem that has config jumpers.  I changed it to serial port 1 and to autoanswer.  Booted up….

Perfect, answers the connection and everything is fine.