Note: Mobile Networks are configured in the IPFire Web Interface (WebGUI) and is available after completing Step 6: Internet Connection Setup.

IPFire supports two types of modems for mobile network connections:

  • Those which implement QMI (Qualcomm Management Interface), and
  • Those which emulate serial modems

Look here for a list of all support Modems.

The modem needs a SIM card which has to be inserted and optionally can be protected by a PIN number.

QMI Modems

QMI is the more modern interface and should be preferred if your modem supports it.

To set up the connection run setup in the console and select PPP Modem in the address configuration.

Now change to the WebGUI under System -> Dial-Up select QMI. You will be prompted for the APN, username and password. This information is provided by your ISP.

Save the profile and connect.

Legacy Modems

Modem Status

You can see the status of the modem, as well as the SIM card, if it is registered to the home network or any other network at Status -> Modem Status.

Setting up the modem

All modems emulate a serial interface which is exactly like we have been using since the times of actual serial modems at 56k or less. Therefore we use the same commands to control the modems which are called AT commands.

The number and order of the AT commands can vary from ISP to another one and may also be different for each modem.


To signal to the modem that we are going to need a data connection, we will enter the special phone number *99#.

Unlocking the SIM card

If the SIM card is PIN-locked, it needs to be unlocked before it can be used. That can be done by sending this AT command as first command to the modem where 1234 is the PIN number:


Setting the Access Point Name (APN)

The APN is required to connect to the correct data network and has to be set with the third AT command:


In this example, we use internet.t-mobile as the APN. This has to be changed for other providers and you will get this information from your ISP.


Authentication is necessary for some APNs and the username and password can just be entered into their respective fields.

The method of authentication can either be PAP or CHAP which both are supported by pretty much all ISPs.

  • APN Changer - please review this website and check before using. I do not have a mobile network to check.