R761's commentary

12 July 2008

Connecting Ubuntu with bluetooth to Telstra 3g

Filed under: E51, Ubuntu — Tags: , , , , , , — r761 @ 10:35 pm

I have a Nokia E51 with a Telstra (Australia) SIM. There are a number of pages which describe how to connect. The one crucial step they didn’t explain is what Telstra calls its access point. It is “telstra.wap”. The AT command required is:


Here’s the whole process:

  1. Set bluetooh on the phone to temporarily discoverable (Home/Menu, Connectivity, Bluetooth, My phone’s visibility=Defined period, 2 minutes.)
  2. Run: sdptool search dun
    Make a note of the MAC address (00:1D:FD:….) and the Channel, (eg 4)
  3. Edit /etc/bluetooth/rfcomm.conf to look like
    # RFCOMM configuration file.
    rfcomm0 {
    # Automatically bind the device at startup
    bind yes;
    # Bluetooth address of the device
    device 00:1D:FD:AB:CD:EF;  # replace with your MAC
    # RFCOMM channel for the connection
    channel	4;  # replace with your channel
    # Description of the connection
    comment "Nokia E51 phone";
  4. Run: sudo rfcomm bind 0 00:1D:FD:AB:CD:EF
  5. Run: sudo /etc/init.d/bluetooth restart
  6. Edit /etc/ppp/peers/3g to look like
    # user and password are ignored by the other end
    user "3g"
    password "3g"
    connect "/usr/sbin/chat -t 5 -v '' ATZ OK 'ATV1 E0' OK 'AT+CGDCONT=1,\"IP\",\"telstra.wap\"' OK 'ATDT*99***1#' '}'"
    # Serial device to which the modem is connected.
    # Speed of the serial line.
    # Assumes that your IP address is allocated dynamically by the ISP.
    # Try to get the name server addresses from the ISP.
    # Use this connection as the default route.
    # Makes pppd "dial again" when the connection is lost.
    # Do not ask the remote to authenticate.
    # log connecting messages to /var/log/syslog (via syslog)
    # serial port locking
    # disable compression
  7. To connect run: pon 3g
  8. Enjoy the internet at premium Telstra prices
  9. To disconnect run: poff

If the bluetooth serial port stops working for no apparent reason, and minicom complains that the device has gone away, check the channel. It changed on me for no apparent reason. Once I updated it in /etc/bluetooth/rfcomm0 and ran /etc/init.d/bluetooth restart it started working again.



  1. Hi, nice post.

    Did you get full 3G speed? Or just edge?

    I’m planning to buy a new mobile, and I want to use it to connect to the internet.

    Braulio Gergull

    Comment by Braulio Gergull — 23 October 2008 @ 11:13 am

  2. My subjective evaluation from using it is that it was slow – significantly slower than Optus cable, even for simple web browsing of ordinary pages.
    Given Telstra’s prices I don’t use it much, and haven’t performed any objective speed tests.

    Comment by r761 — 23 October 2008 @ 12:26 pm

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