No Home Network - How To Use CF

Arthur Penney

New Member
Another baffled newbie wanting some advice, after having looked extensively on this site.

About three years ago I bought a secondhand HDR-Fox T2 with no idea about its extra capabilities. It is defective in that it only seems to work in the cold weather with the lid slightly open. But that’s okay, because I primarily wanted it for Christmas anyway. So if I have to switch it off for six months it doesn’t actually matter.

What does matter is that about a year ago and then last December the deleting problem without actually deleting happened. Fortunately after a few days the problem went away. If the problem happens again I might not be so lucky.

I am beginning to wonder whether the best thing to try when the problem happens again is to go back to the older operating system method. I had been thinking of connecting to Wi-Fi by USB dongle. I simply don’t know whether there are any that are now available. It sounds as though the ones from China on eBay may be fakes or if they’re not just slow. Of course, slowness doesn’t matter if I only want to access fixdisk.

I am also wondering whether I can use the ethernet Wi-Fi bridge suggested on the site. Let me tell you about my equipment.

Until a year ago, I just went up to the library nearby for a an hour or two a week and use the terminal to get on the Internet. I was given a couple of years ago by a local an Acer aspire one small laptop with Windows 10. Then last summer I was given by a charity, as were several others I know, an iPad and a Vodafone Huawei mobile phone Internet access little box. The little box has a button, three lights, and a cable with a USB connector which is normally put into the mains power adapter but can be put into a PC USB socket. It did actually work with my 21 years old w98/Xp desktop. Of course I disconnected as rapidly as possible.

What would you advise when the deleting problem re-occurs, apart from obviously waiting a few days to see whether it goes away again.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
You have posted in a very old thread, and things have moved on since 2015! I am going to suggest this is split off to a new thread (now done).

Install the Custom Firmware for the HDR-Fox T2, it has added diagnostics that can remove the *Deleating problem
It's not as straightforward as that - the OP does not have a domestic network infrastructure.

Huawei mobile phone Internet access little box.
That is what is sometimes known as a "MiFi" - a mobile data-only terminal providing a WiFi hot-spot. I am not sure whether it could act as a router as well (which is what you would need in order to communicate between your HDR-FOX + dongle, your iPad or Acer, and the Internet all at the same time). My phone hot-spot will do this, so it is a possibility.

I had been thinking of connecting to Wi-Fi by USB dongle. I simply don’t know whether there are any that are now available. It sounds as though the ones from China on eBay may be fakes or if they’re not just slow.
The HDR-FOX itself is slow, there is no reason to blame a USB WiFi dongle for making it slower. Despite the relevant dongle chipset (Ralink RT3070, compatible with HDR-FOX) not thought to be made any more, it has been shown that dongles advertised on eBay as RT3070, even recently, do indeed work. I bought a couple myself.

When you've got one, we'll help you set everything up. An alternative (if the Acer has an Ethernet socket) is to connect the Acer to the HDR-FOX by an Ethernet cable, and the Acer to the Internet via the MiFi.

It is defective in that it only seems to work in the cold weather with the lid slightly open.
It sounds possible the fan isn't working, and/or there's a lot of dust inside. See HDR-FOX Commissioning, Disassembly, Repair (click).

What would you advise when the deleting problem re-occurs, apart from obviously waiting a few days to see whether it goes away again.
What you should do is act before the delete problem happens again - I presume you've read this: Quick Guide to Disk Recovery (click).
 
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Ezra Pound

Well-Known Member
It's not as straightforward as that - the OP does not have a domestic network infrastructure
It is as straightforward as that, he doesn't need to install the full web interface in order to use fixdisk (the package required to remove the *Deleting problem), he only needs to install a single file via USB
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
It is as straightforward as that, he doesn't need to install the full web interface in order to use fixdisk (the package required to remove the *Deleting problem), he only needs to install a single file via USB
And how will he then run it? He still needs a network connection to the HDR-FOX.

An Ethernet cable to the Acer (if it has a connection) would be simplest in hardware terms, but not easy to configure for a non-techie. Telnet is pretty much out for an iPad (the free apps are not much good). If the MiFi plus a Wifi dongle works, that's reasonably straightforward to explain and means the iPad can access webshell (once installed).
 
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Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
You've tried doing that in Win10 have you? I look forward to reading your detailed instructions how to do it. In any case, the Acer One might not have Ethernet.
 

MartinLiddle

Super Moderator
Staff member
You've tried doing that in Win10 have you? I look forward to reading your detailed instructions how to do it. In any case, the Acer One might not have Ethernet.
I think the Acer One has a network port and I hope it is not running Windows 10 which would be just about unusable on a single core Atom with 1GB RAM.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
You said "laptop". Either way, good luck with that. If you want to provide the hand-holding be my guest - I shall watch with interest.
 

rpb424

Active Member
It would be worth logging into the web interface of your Huawei device and just checking within the wifi security settings for an ‘AP Isolation’ option. If that exists then it implies that you can set up the wifi network to allow connections between clients connected to it via wifi (as would be required in your case), by making sure that the option is ‘off’. I believe that most devices support this, and if so then you could go ahead and source a dongle, but if not then there would be no point getting one.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
You really are clutching at straws in order to find fault aren't you
And you deliberately changed tack to make it look like I was being awkward. You definitely said "laptop", and the laptop (we are told, but you presumably didn't notice) is Win10.

I'm still looking forward to your non-techie's guide to direct connection between a WIn10 laptop and the HDR-FOX, but a non-techie's guide to doing that with a Win98 and/or WinXP PC would do a pinch (if that suits the OP).

I am willing to do that for using the MiFi as a router to mediate between the HDR-FOX at the iPad - if the MiFi has that capability. The benefit would be that the OP then has access to all the benefits of WebIF, not just Telnet. I'm not at all sure WIn98 or XP could work with WebIF - are the compatible browsers sufficiently up to date? Presuming not, they would be restricted to the Telnet menu.

I could also provide instructions for using Win7 for a direct connection - but not Win10.

you could go ahead and source a dongle, but if not then there would be no point getting one.
But very cheap, and possibly worth a try. It will be easy enough to check whether the iPad and HDR-FOX can communicate through the MiFi, and then only go hunting for settings if they don't work straight away.

@Arthur Penney: what's the model number of your MiFi?
 
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/df

Well-Known Member
Whatever the last version of Firefox or its relatives is that runs on XP will be fine for WebIf, which after all was mostly written before the madness took hold.
 
OP
A

Arthur Penney

New Member
Thank you all for so many interesting replies.
The model number of the MiFi ‘little box’ is Vodafone Mobile WiFi R219h, according to the carton in which it came.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
The manual on the Huawei website says very little, and the R219h appears to be exclusive to Vodafone. Setup is through a web interface on the MiFi itself, and it seems the only way to find out what's in it is to explore.

Thus, without pressing you for any more details you might find difficult to provide, you have two possibilities:

1. You obtain a RT3070-based USB WiFi dongle in the expectation the MiFi can provide router functionality. That will enable you to operate the maintenance functions of the CF (custom firmware), particularly fixdisk, from your iPad or your Acer One, and open the door to the wider CF WebIF functionality.

2. You obtain an Ethernet patch lead to connect the HDR-FOX Ethernet port directly to your Acer One, and hope that somebody can provide you instructions for setting up a local IP connection in Win10, or to your WinXP PC. WinXP is easier to "hack" than Win10. Then it's a question of running Telnet (or an equivalent utility) to operate the maintenance functions. You wouldn't really want to operate WebIF that way, partly from the convenience point of view, but also because WebIF benefits greatly from Internet connectivity.

Personally, I recommend exhausting Option 1 before resorting to Option 2.

Before you can do any of that, you will need to use your notebook (the Acer One) to download and unzip the CF to a UPD, for the initial firmware update required to install CF to the HDR-FOX. This itself is slightly tricky, because the HDR-FOX is picky about what UPDs it is willing to update from, and if you don't have any knocking about which you can try, it is difficult to be specific what you need to buy. Ultimately one of us might have to sell/give/lend you one of ours we know works (and in that case we could provide it with the CF already downloaded to it).
 

MartinLiddle

Super Moderator
Staff member
2. You obtain an Ethernet patch lead to connect the HDR-FOX Ethernet port directly to your Acer One, and hope that somebody can provide you instructions for setting up a local IP connection in Win10, or to your WinXP PC. WinXP is easier to "hack" than Win10.
Why do you think setting a fixed IP address is more difficult in Win10; I would say the process is almost identical.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Why do you think setting a fixed IP address is more difficult in Win10; I would say the process is almost identical.
I can't say, I don't know Win10. I can say I am unable to offer any help. It is however definitely the case that the more recent the version of Windows, the more hoops one has to go through (in general) and the more hidden things are from the non-admin user.
 

Black Hole

May contain traces of nut
Win10; I would say the process is almost identical.
I don't think there are written-up details how to do this anywhere on the forum/wiki, so if you would be so kind as to do that it will be a service.

The task is to connect a Win10 PC to the HDR-FOX directly by point-to-point Ethernet; configure the HDR-FOX and/or PC so they communicate; access the CF Telnet menu. A secondary task is to: access WebIF; configure for the HDR-FOX to access the Internet via the PC's WiFi.
 
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