Show information about USB LTE Modem in Luci

my first post here. I hope in the right subforum... :slight_smile:

Briefly about me. My name is Joe and I have quite a long IT experience. I've also been working in IT for about 10 years. Networks, Storage, Linux, Windows, all no foreign words for me. However, I still have little experience with OpenWRT. My firewall solution for home is currently OPNsense.
But now I want to build a travel router myself and since I have already worked with the devices of GliNET, there is also an OpenWRT running, OpenWRT was the only logical way for me.

To start my project I ordered some hardware in China and got it delivered. I have the following here:

The goal is to have a travel router with which I can access the Internet via LTE, Wifi and network cable. For this purpose the devices (laptop, smartphone, etc.) should connect to the router via network cable or Wifi. In addition, the router should always establish a Wireguard VPN to my server at home.
Later I want to play around with SMB shares and Docker. But that comes as I said later.

Currently I have already installed OpenWRT on the NanoPi (there is a special version "FriendlyWRT" from the manufacturer of the NanoPi. I also checked if all hardware works correctly. The two wifi modules are recognized and I can use them. Also the LTE USB Expansion Board is recognized as USB0 and I get a DHCP address from the device.

That's where the good news stops. Especially the LTE modem is giving me a hard time. In a sense it is a black box. I can't see if the modem has dialed into a cellular network, signal strength, etc. is missing. I first thought it would be like an LTE stick that I get a WebGUI from the thing, unfortunately no.
What I got so far, the thing identifies itself as "Android", at least "lsusb" shows it that way. And apparently a thetering via RNDIS is done here. But I'm on thin ice, I don't know enough about it...

Now I have written a lot and have two questions.

  1. how do I get it that I get a few more info about my mobile data connection in Luci? If that works at all...
  2. if it is not possible, which hardware would you recommend me to implement something like that?

Thanks a lot for the help.



Yes, that's what "Driver free" translates to. Sorry.

You might be lucky and figure out some way to switch the modem firmware into some other operating mode, where it exposes some modem management interface. The full lsusb -v or /sys/kernel/debug/usb/devices listing could provide some hints. But most likely it doesn't.

thank you very much for the quick reply.

Yes, I must confess that I had not thought about it. I just found it so easy to order directly from a dealer and then also have a modem which fits into the housing. At least with a bit of tinkering.

Would you have a modem which you could recommend? I am willing to invest here again, it just has to fit.
I had thought of something like this:

And then accordingly a WWAN module which I can address via QMI or similar.

Unfortunately I don't have the time and the know how to adapt the firmware. I would rather experiment a bit with OpenWRT than with the firmware of the modem.



The adapter looks good. As for suitable m.2 modems, search here. It's been discussed a few times already. My experience is limited.

Just don't be tempted to buy the fastest possible modem without checking power requirements. The spec says 900 mA max for USB3. And the regulator on the adapter could limit this even further

This will be a problem, as Intel wireless cards do not support AP mode (repectively only on 2.4 GHz, and only in a very limited fashion). Your options would be Mediatek or QCA, but not Intel.

@bmork Thank you for your help. Just orderd this adapter and found a cheap Fibocom L850 Modem on Ebay. I will try this one.

@slh Good to know. I just tought "buy Intel, no worrys". It seems this is not true. Can you recommend a wireless card?

Thank you so much.

Thank you so much. Just orderd a card with MT7922.
Hopefully it is not to slow,...