Gadgets

  • Update your Sky Router to work with any ISP March 28, 2012 misterjaytee

    So your usual (non-Sky) router develops a fault and all you’ve got lying around is that old Sky Router left over from when you decided to give Sky the chop and go get a better service (or whatever other reason you had for leaving Sky).

    Problem is that the Sky Router does not allow you to enter your new ISP’s details (e.g. the DSL username and password).

    If your Sky Router is the Sagem F@ST 2504, then you may be in luck.

    First up, make sure you can login to the router (try going to http://192.168.0.1 first. When prompted for username and password, enter:
    username: admin
    password: sky

    If this works, then you can at least go onto perform the next steps…

    Before proceeding, there are a few things to consider:

    1. Your contract with Sky may mean that what you are about to do is in breach of contract – make sure you know what the terms are before continuing (e.g. some contracts state that they can ask for the Router back up to 6 months after the contract ends)
    2. Flashing the Router with new firmware is a risk – you could brick the router completely. But then again, if it’s just an old Router gathering dust, then maybe it’s not an issue
    3. No-one else is liable for anything that goes wrong with this process except for you – it worked for me, and has worked for many others, but equally it’s tough luck if it goes wrong

    Onto business:

    Go and download the following files:

    F2404_3_18_1a4_flash_image_NONE.rar

    F2404_3_24a4_fs_kernel_NONE.zip

    F2404_3_33_8a4_fs_kernel_NONE.zip

    Uncompress all the files – try 7-zip if you don’t have a decent zip/unzip tool.

    Now back to the Router – select the option “Router Upgrade” and choose the F2404_3_18_1a4_flash_image_NONE.w file (that you just extracted). Click “Upload”. On completion, the router will have changed its IP address to 192.168.1.1, so you need to change your IP settings (hint, pick an address such as 192.168.1.2), then browse to http://192.168.1.1.

    You’ll now see an “Update Software” page. Before you upload the software, look at the bottom of your Router and you should see a MAC Address. Enter this address in the box that says “MAC Base Address”, then click “Save/Apply”.

    Refresh the web page to make sure you can still connect to the Router. Now on the “Update Software” page, click Browse and choose the file F2404_3_24a4_fs_kernel_NONE that you extracted earlier. Click “Update Software”.

    Wait a few minutes and you should find that the Router now has updated firmware – if you get a red/pink page that looks like an error page, then refresh your Browser (F5 or Ctrl/F5) – if you don’t get a login prompt, then close you rBrowser and fire up the page again.

    When prompted for  a username enter:
    username: admin
    password: admin

    You’ll now have an updated router that is much more configurable than it was before. Next steps:

    1. Change the admin password (Management/Access Control/Passwords)
    2. Update to the later firmware (Management/Update Software and choose the file F2404_3_33_8a4_fs_kernel_NONE.DAT)
    3. Configure the DSL and Wireless Settings – don’t forget in the UK, DSL settings are VPI=0, VCI=38. If in doubt also choose UBR and PPPoA for your WAN/DSL settings.

    This post is a collection of work from other people with my own thoughts thrown in.

    Credits:
    Shonk @ SkyUser Forum (this post – http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/sky-router/45444-f-st-2504-generic-firmware-needed-2.html)
    IsItMe @ SkyUser Forum (this post – http://www.skyuser.co.uk/forum/asking-help/20137-sagem-f-st-2504-a-3.html#post267322)

     

  • Fritz!Box and Sky Broadband September 16, 2009 misterjaytee

    After struggling along with my Draytek Vigor 2600 router, which didn’t seem too stable on my ADSL but had some nice features, I decided that I’d like to get a new Broadband Router, the geekily named Fritz!Box Fon WLAN 7270 – basically I wanted another gadget to play with, but don’t tell the wife 🙂

    The Fritz!Box, with it’s latest firmware (at time of writing it is version 54.04.76), has a multitude of features, some not found on the standard ADSL Wireless Routers that you get from other manufacturers/vendors.

    For instance, there’s the built-in GAP compatible DECT Base Station which means you don’t have to find more than one mains point near your BT Master Socket. There’s VOIP capability using SIP (not Skype though), USB connectivity (memory device to store Faxes on, NAS Storage, Printer connection, Stick ‘n’ Surf), Answer Machine, Fax receiver (it emails you the Fax!), Child Protection (to limit usage of devices), Night Service (so you don’t get pestered with phone calls in the middle of the night, and to switch off the Wireless if you want to), Telephone Book and Telephone Call Log, ability to block certain numbers (or “unknown” numbers). And along with all that you also get a fully functioning ADSL2+ Router and Wireless-N capability.

    Phew!

    So, what’s up with it then? For a start, I wanted to connect it to Sky Broadband like I did my Draytek router. But after entering all my details, I could only connect to Google! Now in the Sky T’s & C’s they don’t allow you to connect any Router except theirs, so you have to force the MAC Address from the Sky Router into your Router, which is what I’d done with the Draytek.

    Unfortunately the Fritz!Box didn’t seem to have a way of doing this, so after hunting around I found out that there was an underlying Linux Operating System (I’m comfortable with Linux, so I gave it a go). Telnet to 192.168.1.1 – Arghh!

    It should have a Telnet Server in there – Some Googling around got me the code to switch on the Telnet Server – you dial #96*7* from your handset and this enables a Telnet Server within the Fritz!Box (http://www.nat32.com/nat32e/htm/fritz.htm).

    So once in, I set about changing the MAC Address manually, thus:

    ifconfig adsl down
    ifconfig adsl up hw ether 00:01:02:03:04:05

    (replacing 00:01:02:03:04:05 with my MAC Address)

    But this does not survive a restart.

    I then tried changing the parameter macdsl_override in the /var/flash/ar7.cfg file, but this did not work and I still had to type in the commands above via telnet.

    After much messing around, I found out how to override the MAC Address via the GUI (AVM support didn’t even know how to do this!). The main problem seems to be that the default for the Fritz!Box is to auto-detect the DSL ATM settings. So here is how you set it up and get Sky Broadband working on your AVM Fritz!Box (without having to Telnet to the box!):

    • Switch Expert Mode on (log into the box, Click “Settings” at the top of the page, then in the left menu click “Advanced Settings”, “System”, then “Expert Mode”. Check the box that says “Show expert settings” then click “Apply”)

    To set the MAC Address (might not be required, but Sky could disable the account if you don’t do this!)

    • Ensure your Computer is plugged into LAN port 2 (see image at bottom of post)
    • From Advanced Settings / Internet / Account Information, select:
    • Internet connection via LAN 1
    • No account information required (IP)
    • Set Fritz!Box MAC Address to that required by Sky
      • Sky don’t publish the MAC address that’s required – their T’s & C’s forbid you using any router other than their own (which is a poor Sagem router). You need to login to the Sky supplied router first to determine the correct MAC Address for the ADSL connection – there’s plenty of info on the Internet on how to do this, but a good start point is here
    • Click Apply (click Okay to any warnings)

    To enable the Internet connection properly (after setting the MAC Address):

    • From Advanced Settings / Internet / Account Information, select:
    • Internet connection via DSL
    • Account information required (PPPoE/PPPoA connection)
    • Enter User Name and Password for the DSL connection
    • Define ATM settings manually
    • VPI = 0
    • VCI = 38
    • Encapsulation = PPPoA/LLC
    • Click Apply (click Okay to any warnings)

    And that’s all there is to it – except to say that the above method for setting the MAC Address does not work with the latest firmware, but did work with the originally supplied firmware – set it up before applying the new firmware update and it will be okay.

    Since getting this up and running, I’ve found the Fritz!Box to be very stable with the DSL link staying up for weeks [edit in October: now 1 month without reboot] (it’s usually a power cut or firmware upgrade that makes me restart the device). I’ve also messed around with the VOIP stuff (some good sites for SIP / VOIP related stuff are http://www.voipuser.org/ and http://www.voiptalk.org/).

    I’ve also managed to avoid tens of pesky phone calls from unsolicited sales people – they will think the phone is ringing, but the actual handsets don’t ring – so if they have legitimate business with you, they will be able to leave a voice message and you can ring them back.

    In all, I like this device a lot. The main niggles I have are that there are some small areas that are not Anglicised yet. All the Web interface is available in English, but until the latest firmware upgrade, emails for the Answer Machine (yes you can receive a voice mail by email as well as dialling **600) and status updates were in German. Unfortunately the DECT telephone menus are not completely Anglicised yet (they were completely German before, and now there’s a half and half mix which is confusing).

    I’d highly recommend this router – it’s a premium router with a premium price, but I think it was well worth the outlay. You can buy them from a few online retailers, such as Amazon. I bought mine from http://www.broadbandstuff.co.uk/.

    So you can see what you’re getting, here’s a couple of pictures:


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