FreeBSD @home — setting up your cable modem

FreeBSD @home — setting up your cable modem

This article was submitted by Kavi Tanna.

The setup

This page was created to aid people who need help with setting up their
@Home service.

Many people have mailed mailing lists, posted messages on newsgroups,
read documentation about trying to configure their @Home service with freebsd (including
me). Most people with cable modems don’t have many problems setting it up, except for
@Home subscribers.

The configuration is real easy.  The thing that throws people off is whether to
use DHCP or manually set the values.

@Home uses DHCP so don’t manually configure it.  Why do they use it?  Don’t
ask me, it confuses many subscribers because they have a static ip address, a static
gateway address, a static netmask, and a static name server.  The usage of DHCP
generally takes place when cable modem subscribers from certain providers have dynamic ip
addresses, dynamic etc.  Cable subscribers (who aren’t part of @Home) who have static
settings can manually enter their info in.

@Home users must use DHCP as I have stated before.  Please do not use the
identification number I used on this webpage, IT’S JUST AN EXAMPLE!!!!  Please use
the identification number @Home gave you.

These are the steps you need to take:

1. Edit the dhclient.conf file. Usage: ee /etc/dhclient.conf (this is the DHCP config

This is what mine looks like:

interface "de0" {
send host-name "cr123456-a";
request subnet-mask, broadcast-address, routers,
          domain-name-servers, domain-name, time-servers;
require domain-name-servers;

Make sure you edit the file so it looks like mine (except for the hostname :)).  
Later on you can add other settings if you wish.  Once you edit it, save the changes.

Note that "de0" is the driver name for pci ethernet card that was installed
in my computer, if you were given a different device then use the appropriate driver name
with the device. Ex – "ep0", "de0", "ed0"

2. Edit the rc.conf file. Usage: ee /etc/rc.conf  Just add these two
lines to what you have there:


3. Finally you can now run your cable modem by running dhclient. Usage : dhclient

You should get a signal back. It will say something like:

DHCP offer at

To do the final test, you should ping a website. Usage: ping

If you don’t get your @Home setup working then please e-mail me at freebsdhelp and I will help you within
24 hours.  Check for any typos that you might have made before mailing me
:).   Also give me feedback about the site!

For more information (added on 20 May 2000)

Chris Wicklein write in to say the following URL more information on cable modems.

2 thoughts on “FreeBSD @home — setting up your cable modem”

  1. By the way, great site. I use it quite often. I was reading some mail on -questions, and someone pointed someone to this article. You mention setting the actual hostname of the machine to the @Home DHCP id. Is this necessary? Doesn’t it work with just the send hostname directive in dhclient.conf? Just curious.


    1. I didn’t write the article, but I do use @home. So I’m guessing. @home don’t care what your host name is. They are just using the host-name facility of DHCP to grab your user id or account id [in this context user id/account id is your @HOME account, as shown in the article: cr123456-a]. They then use this to set up your DHCP details. They know that value. They assigned it to you. They have control over it.

      They don’t care that your box is named Imagine if they had to coordinate all the hostnames for their users? "No, I’m sorry, you can’t call your box Scruffy, because someone else has already used that name".

      Make sense?

      And yes, I’m guessing.

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