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Perle RAS 8 Multimodem Setup - CentOS 6.5

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TheFunk
2014-07-25
2014-08-14
  • TheFunk
    TheFunk
    2014-07-25

    Hi everyone. When it comes to Linux I'm about as slick as caffeinated soap (I don't remember where I heard this phrase). However, when it comes to phones and modems I have absolutely no clue what I'm doing. So, when I decided to make a fax server I bought this PCI-RAS 8 port multimodem card from Perle because it was on the supported hardware list, thinking that would make my job easier. I built the Perle 3.9 driver from the src rpm available on their site (without the parallel port support, because I don't have any parallel ports) and I loaded the driver with modprobe. It liked that, because in /var/log/messages this was returned:

    kernel: Perle Serial driver version 3.9.0 (2013-04-11) with SHARE_IRQ SERIAL_PCI enabled
    

    This log should also indicate that the driver has created virtual serial ports, /dev/ttyPS0-7 to be exact. The log didn't indicate this, which according to Perle's documentation means that I needed to create them using ps_addports. So I did, and lo and behold under the /dev folder there are now 8 ttyPS'. If I run setserial, these devices do not appear. My next step was running faxgetty ttyPS0 followed by faxaddmodem ttyPS0. The faxaddmodem ran until it tried to detect the speed of the ttyPS0 modem, at which point it gave up.

    This modem is plugged into a live phone jack currently, so I'm not sure why the connection isn't working. My best guess is that the ttyPS virtual serial ports aren't being setup properly, but I'm at a loss for what to do.

    If anyone has any idea what might be going on, please help! I'm stuck y'all. I'd call Perle for help but I bought the card used from a 3rd party, so I'd have to buy a maintenance contract, which I'm sure is super salty.

     
  • Lee Howard
    Lee Howard
    2014-07-25

    Use minicom to try to "talk" to the modem tty ports. faxaddmodem/probemodem don't do a good job of providing diagnostic information if the modem is unresponsive. So just try to send simple "AT" commands to the modem via minicom. If that works then it narrows down the troubleshooting to HylaFAX-specific issues. If it does not work, then working with Perle or someone who has experience with Perle will be required unless you or someone wants to dig-into the Perle driver.

     
  • TheFunk
    TheFunk
    2014-08-14

    I was able to get the card working. I switched to Debian 7.6 in an effort to solve my problem. The ttyPS interfaces were NOT used, the driver must be built into the 3.2 kernel. I had to change the number of serial interfaces created by Linux at startup. This can be done in either the bootloader, or by changing the kernel configuration. It's easier to set the option in the bootloader, rather than recompiling the whole darn kernel. This gave me extra ttySx interfaces.

    After that I tested the one cabled line with minicom and kept getting told there was no dialtone. So I tried dialing with ATX3DT in order to skip checking for a dialtone and it still wouldn't send. I checked the line running to the server and sure enough it was dead. It was punched down again and afterwards I received a dialtone. It immediately placed my calls from minicom after that, so I set up a modem in hylafax and hip hip hooray, working PCI-RAS card!!! :D