PPTP DSL Linux mini howto

January 12, 2008

I live in Austria and the only broad band Internet connection (not including the UMTS stuff) I can get is from the Telekom Austria and it is PPTP based and I’m using AON as Provider. I often hear from new guys in the LUGT (Linux User Group Tirol) that it is hard to set it up with Linux. It is not! I will explain here how to setup a PPTP tunnel to an Alcatel Speed Touch Ethernet modem on a Debian based distribution.

First we need to install some packages:


# apt-get install ppp pptp-linux

Than we need to set following IP on the network interface which is connected to the modem:


10.0.0.1/255.255.255.0

after this is done following should work:


ping 10.0.0.138

If not check if the LED for the LAN connection on the modem is on and that you’ve configured your interface correctly with “ifconfig”. It is now possible to use something like knet oder kppp to make the tunnel but I describe here the manual way for an small Linux server/router). Create a file
/etc/ppp/peers/aon with following content:


user your_long_aon_number (e.g. 49373880000)
noipdefault
defaultroute
hide-password
connect /bin/true
noauth
persist
debug

And /etc/ppp/pap-secrets with following:


49373880000 aon secret_password

Replace the number above with our own. If you’ve done this you just need to type following to make the connection:


# pptp 10.0.0.138 call aon

As this connection should be persistent we need to add a fail save script which monitors the pppd daemon. With this reconnect script, which I have running for > 5 years, I never had problems even if the tunnel stalled it was discovered and the tunnel reestablished. The content of the /usr/local/sbin/reconnect script is:


#!/bin/bash
/usr/bin/killall pppd 1>/dev/null 2>/dev/null
/bin/sleep 3
/usr/bin/killall pptp 1>/dev/null 2>/dev/null
/bin/sleep 3
/usr/bin/killall -9 pppd 1>/dev/null 2>/dev/null
/usr/bin/killall -9 pptp 1>/dev/null 2>/dev/null
/bin/rm /var/run/pptp/10.0.0.138 1>/dev/null 2>/dev/null
/bin/sleep 2
/usr/sbin/pptp 10.0.0.138 call aon

and in the crontab I’ve:


# m h dom mon dow command
0,30 * * * * ping -c 2 195.58.160.194 > /dev/null || ping -c 2 195.58.161.122
> /dev/null || /usr/local/sbin/reconnect

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