OpenSuSE 11.3 - How to detect new USB devices?

Strange to me that a search only seemed to turn up some partial instructions for enabling detection of new USB devices (not discoverable in a default install) in 11.1 and no later. I assume perhaps incorrectly that things have changed since so attempted the following.

Discover an HTC G1 phone to use as a modem. So, after the phone is discoverable by SuSE the next step would be to configure the connection.

It seems that this phone is listed in /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/

I assumed incorrectly it seems that it should have been sufficient to simply create a file in the /etc/usb_modeswitch.d/ directory with the appropriate TargetVendor and TargetProduct codes as follows

Filename: 0bbr:0c01

# HTC Android G1 Phone

DefaultVendor= 0x0bb4

TargetVendor= 0x0bb4



I need the proper way to do this in OpenSuSE 11.3.
A bonus would be if someone could verify that after the modem/phone is recognized whether the next step is to configure the device using YAST/modem.


yes, it is a hardware problem, but you might find more help in the
wireless sub-forum of networking…

if i were you i’d start with the three ‘stickies’ at the top of the
wireless forum…and, then post anew in that forum if those three
don’t get you smiling.

CAVEAT: [posted via NNTP w/openSUSE 10.3]
When it comes to chocolate, resistance is futile.

Thx for the suggestion, I skimmed the three stickies and at least the second one looks like a decent start.

The reason why I posted here in Hardware is because at the moment the problem is the basic issue of device detection, not configuration which I consider a more basic issue and likely won’t be addressed completely in the stickies (In fact, one procedure in the stickies literally ends up throwing hands in the air and assumes nothing can be done). I’m very surprised that searching the Forums there are relatively few posts about unrecognized USB peripherals… Either SuSE is doing a great job in USB device recognition or Users don’t often step outside what’s commonly used.

Also, in my case that my USB device is a phone is likely less relevant to the Wireless Forum than usual because Android phone devices aren’t really categorized as Modem devices. Instead, Android phones are recognized as more generic “application” devices, sometimes as USB disk devices which then would need to be “switched” to be a non-disk, “application” device.

Properly configured, when using an Android phone as a modem (only in name), after the Phone is properly recognized the User would start an HTTP proxy running on the local computer (typically the Android SDK ADB utility) and configure the Android phone/device to simply listen on a TCP port and forward (automatically to its default gateway). Pointing the browser to the machine’s own HTTP proxy (localhost) at the application layer (eg. Firefox’s proxy implementation and not IE which is implemented at the system layer) should automatically forward TCP packets over USB to the Android device which is then forwarded to the Internet.

This is very different from normal WiFi or typical modem configuration, but at this point I’ll settle for any generic explanation how to add an entry for a new USB device to SuSE.


it seems likely you will need usb_modeswitch to “flip” the identity of your phone;

however I could not see the ID


in the usb_modeswitch data file; I was not clear where you derived your file from; (meaning: usb_modeswitch do not have a config for your device)

for a usb modem; eg Huawei or ZTE etc; if one plugs it in and types

dmesg | grep tty

in a terminal, one looks to see if ttyUSB0 etc are created; if so, the device is recognised as a modem, and can be configured

could I suggest you copy and paste the above command in a terminal and see what you get:

if you do not get ttyUSB0 etc, I would suggest you need to join the usb_modeswitch forum,

overseen by Josh who manages the programme, and seek his advice;

(he is on holiday I now see!!)

if you get a ttyUSB0 I would suggest configuring using network manager: right-click and then with the selections offered, left-click on EDIT CONNECTIONS; select mobile broadband; Add; then OpenSuse expects you to have already researched the apn settings of your provider; so find those out, and add them to the window offered;

I hope some of this may be of help to you

Thx for your thoughts.

You will not see the file because I created it by inspecting the other files in the same folder to understand the format and content of a typical file in the folder, did a Google search to find the appropriate VendorID and ProductID codes that correspond to the HTC G1, then creating my file by combining the information.

Unfortunately your suggestion to try the tty command will not work for an Android device because as I described the Android OS does not contain modem functionality, it is instead configured as a generic TCP/IP device which forwards packets received over USB and forwarded to the device’s Internet Gateway. In other words and Android device won’t “speak tty”

Thx for the suggestion to contact Josh (A real name!), if he manages that component I’m hopeful he would also know other managers, specifically one who is in charge of the component for USB device detection.


On my LG GT540 with Android 1.6, I cannot mount the SD unless I unmount it on the phone…If I do so with the USB cable connected, the device notifier in KDE4 immediately pops up, reporting the 2GB microSD that’s in the phone.

Maybe this leads you to some equivalent for your phone.

Nope, that won’t bring you further, not in using the phone as a modem. Mine reports:

[39962.411423] usb 1-4: New USB device strings: Mfr=3, Product=2, SerialNumber=1
[39962.411428] usb 1-4: Product: LG Mobile USB Modem
[39962.411431] usb 1-4: Manufacturer: LG Electronics Inc.
[39962.411434] usb 1-4: SerialNumber: 80A352166044315516
[39962.412370] cdc_acm 1-4:1.0: This device cannot do calls on its own. It is not a modem.
[39962.412500] cdc_acm 1-4:1.0: ttyACM0: USB ACM device
[39962.413662] scsi8 : usb-storage 1-4:1.4
[39963.416334] scsi 8:0:0:0: Direct-Access     LGE      Android Platform ffff PQ: 0 ANSI: 2
[39963.416536] sd 8:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg2 type 0
[39963.429592] sd 8:0:0:0: [sdb] Attached SCSI removable disk

Like said, if I unmount the microSD on the phone, the /dev/sdb1 appears as well:

[40321.220118] scsi 13:0:0:0: Direct-Access     LGE      Android Platform ffff PQ: 0 ANSI: 2
[40321.220374] sd 13:0:0:0: Attached scsi generic sg2 type 0
[40321.234384] sd 13:0:0:0: [sdb] Attached SCSI removable disk
[40346.668761] sd 13:0:0:0: [sdb] 3932160 512-byte logical blocks: (2.01 GB/1.87 GiB)
[40346.670382] sd 13:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through
[40346.672376] sd 13:0:0:0: [sdb] Assuming drive cache: write through
[40346.672382]  sdb: sdb1

A little search told me, you indeed need usb_mode_switch.

thanks Knurpht;

when your first quote reports


that surely will allow the device to be used as a modem

I said ttyUSB0 is a common report but other modems report ttyACM0

I do see the line above reports !!

This device cannot do calls on its own. It is not a modem

as I understand usb_modeswitch, it “flips” the ID of devices that have dual functions: modems that are intially seen as storage devices, with software for MS loaded; to me, ttyACM0 is already seen but happy to be put right

I don’t haev experience with Android devices, but admit ttyACM connectivity (if reported) looks promising.

FWIW, I found this post on the Android Forums, which mentioned

I have an application installed on the phone called “Quick System Info”, and whilst trawling through its various menus, I found an entry here: Basic Info -> More Information -> USB Settings, which gives the following five options:

* Samsung Kies
* Media player
* Mass storage
* PC Internet
* Ask on connection

One would think ‘PC Internet’ might be relevant here…

Thx for the try, what you found is typically and often (but not always and always specific to the manufacturer) created by the specific manufacturer of the device as a customization. Motorola Motoblur Android phones also pop up a similar screen.

Unfortunately, it isn’t helpful for fundamental device recognition but would be useful in switching the USB mode of the device after the device is recognized.


Tether an Android Phone Using Proxoid - Linux Magazine Online

FAQ - android-wifi-tether - Frequently Asked Questions - Project Hosting on Google Code

I’ve also tried most of this without success.
Is this something you were able to actually do yourself or just Google?

Proxoid appears to be only a slightly more dressed up app than Tetherbot (by Graha) which is very near a bare implementation of the code described in the Android SDK.

For anyone who finds this post might find my observations on these links useful…

  • For each his own, generally any and all Android tethering apps work identically (identical code) functionally but you may find the User interface for one more to your liking. PDAnet is the exception which although works the same requires its own custom driver. The Graha tetherbot is more appropriate for technical no-frills users, PDAnet for those who don’t mind working with closed source code which may work when others don’t and Proxoid is somewhere in between.

  • The links referencing Ad Hoc wireless networks are applicable only when your Android device points to an Ad Hoc WiFi network as its Internet gateway. Is irrelevant if the Internet Gateway is a Telco or WiFi Infrastructure Mode.

  • The Google Code link is a very old article which many have attempted to update through Comments and contains many inaccuracies or may apply only to some devices. In general, Root access to the Android device is not required.

But the Google Code link does contain one suggestion I haven’t yet considered… That an app(or update) running on the Android device might conflict with tethering. I’m loath to wipe my device and gradually re-load all my apps, and it won’t address the fact that my HTC G1 isn’t recognized by the OS but it’s a try.