[sf-lug] Problems with a Comcast modem; no IP address given

Tom Haddon tom at greenleaftech.net
Sun Jun 1 09:34:57 PDT 2008

On Sun, 2008-06-01 at 07:58 -0700, Christian Einfeldt wrote:
> hi 
> With the telephone support of two of the more able members of this
> LUG, I spent about 8 hours yesterday attempting to hook up a
> low-income family with a Hardy machine on Comcast service.  The
> problem is the Arris TM502G cable modem.  The modem will not hand out
> an IP address.  I am going to try this workaround today, but I am not
> optimistic about it working:
> http://www.dslreports.com/forum/r19742633-
> The Hardy install is able to see the Arris modem over Firefox and by
> pinging  When I enter that number into Firefox, Firefox
> displays the Arris status page (although there are no pages for
> changing settings on the modem, which might be a "feature" [bug] of
> the modem that caused Comcast to choose that modem, since it is not
> easy to modify by the end user.  The status page reveals details as to
> when the modem has been rebooted, etc., so it is clear that this
> information is live and real, and not generic.  Also I am able to ping
> the modem at  Further, Comcast says that they are able
> to see the modem, and Comcast reps have been able to reboot the modem
> remotely upon my request.  
> We tried various methods to get an IP address, including dhclient,
> hard rebooting the modem, remote rebooting the modem, etc.

I'm sure you've been through this with the people you were working with,

- what IP address were you getting for the hardy machine (you must have
been getting one to have been able to get to
- What DNS server were you being given? (contents of "/etc/resolv.conf")
- What was the output of the routing table? ("route -n")
- Were you able to get to an IP address on the other side of the modem
(i.e. IP vs. resolvable host name)?

> So it is clear that 
> 1)  Hardy can see the modem, hence the ethernet cable is good, and the
> NIC is good.  This box was also successfully updated via the Hardy
> repositories when it was being configured, and so the NIC is good.  
> 2)  The Coax cable is known good, since the Comcast reps were able to
> reboot the machine remotely. 
> What I am requesting:
> 1)  Does anyone here have an old router that they would be willing to
> give to this family? 

I have two things I'll bring to the meeting. A Linksys WRT54GS
Wireless/Wired Broadband Router and a D-Link ADSL2+ Modem. The only
problem with them both is that they currently have UK plugs on them, but
you should be able to get them working fine with a UK -> US converter.

Cheers, Tom 

>  The father has said that he would like to have another box for his
> son to beat on, as his 12 year-old son likes computers and is
> considering a career in computers.  How nice it would be to expose
> this kid to Linux, rather than have the family dependent on Windows.
> So we will need to provide this family with a hub or switch or router
> anyway, and if someone has a router, that might help 
> 2)  Has anyone succeeded in getting an Arris TM502G modem working with
> Hardy or Gutsy or any other Linux distro?
> 3)  If someone has some long cat 5 ethernet cable to donate that would
> be a bonus.
> thx for considering my request.
> -- 
> Christian Einfeldt,
> Producer, The Digital Tipping Point 
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