RE: Wharfable ISP dialer?

Dave LaMothe (
Sat, 03 Apr 1999 23:57:38 -0500 (EST)

On 02-Apr-99 Ed Barth wrote:
> What's the best Wharfable app I should use to establish a ppp connection 
> with my ISP?  Currently using netcfg to make the connection but would 
> like the ease of a one-click Wharf button to do the same.
> Get Your Private, Free Email at

Just thought I'd supplement the many responses to this question with a
different approach. I'm assuming you use RedHat since netcfg is that RedHat
tool that's part of the RH control-panel. When I first tried to configure
my ppp stuff it was immediately obvious that RedHat does things very
differently that other distros, presumably to cater to the functionning of
'netcfg'; the scripts were not where the generic HOWTO's said they'd be, and
when I found the scripts they were far more complex that the generic examples.
Moreover, they all began with a warning such as "You should be using netcfg to
change this stuff" or something to that effect. That was in the RH 4.2 days.
With RH 5.2 little has changed in this regard. Also, by default, netcfg
requires root permission.

All I wanted to do was establish ppp as a user, and not muck with the RH "way
of doing things" too much. The answer was in a RH faq. FIrst, as root, you use
netcfg directly (or via 'control-panel'), select 'interfaces', 'ppp0', 'edit',
and check the box "Allow any user to (de)activate interface'. Save that setting.
Then, as user, you issue the command:

"usernetctl ifcfg-ppp0 up" to connect (replace up with down to disconnect)

So I have a Wharf "comm" folder with all my comm type apps in it, along with
these two lines:

*Wharf connect PhoneTTOffhook.xpm Exec "-" usernetctl ifcfg-ppp0 up &
*Wharf disconnect PhoneTT.xpm Exec "-" usernetctl ifcfg-ppp0 down &

This works like a charm and doesn't screw with the RedHat way of doing ppp. I
suspect that if you start mucking with your ppp scripts according to generic
methods, you will lose the functionality of 'netcfg' (not that that would be a
great loss, but you will have to figure out, and re-arrange your whole ppp
setup). In any case, this gives me the "one-click" (dis)connect you seek.

And if you got wmppp and managed to create scripts that both it and RedHat can
live with, then please pass them on. I installed and configured wmppp with
everything but the scripts and it works fine (I just don't use it to
(dis)connect). I consider it an essential supplement because it gives me more
complete and reliable info than the display on my modem.

Sorry for the 'verboseness' of this, but often non-RedHat users (and RedHat
users alike) overlook the fact that RedHat often differs in how it is set up.
When I was a total newbie (now I guess I'm kind of a mid-bee), I bought
_Red_Hat_Linux_Unleashed_ by Kamran Husain and Timothy Parker (Ph.D. no less)
and after months of frustration, realized that these chumps had never used
RedHat in their freakin lives. Okay, perhaps it was the publisher (Sams) who
decided on the big "RedHat" on the cover because they included a RH CD, in
which case I appologize to the authors and transfer the title of "chumps" to
the publishers. Hmm... that feels better.  :-)
(end of rant)