Project Diald on the NetWinder

Diald is a small daemon process that sets up a "phony" slip interface on your system as the default route. Packets sent to the default cause the daemon to bring up a dynamic PPP link to a remote site, such as the Internet or a branch office. The packets being sent to the default are intercepted and rerouted over the dynamic link.

Diald was originally written by Eric Schenk to automate his Internet connection. The past year or so on the Diald front has been quiet - Eric apparently had little time to work on the system. Recently, though, Mike Jagdis has taken over the project for changes and maintenance.

I had tried to compile Diald on the NetWinder when I first got it, but it ran into problems with the network include files that I didn't have time to debug. Time to try again...


January 28, 1999 - Tried compiling the newest version (diald-0.98.0-19990121) with no success. The previous version, diald-0.165, compiles cleanly, so I'll start with that. Note that in order to run diald, you must have slip and ppp either compiled into the kernel or built as modules. The NetWinder serial port is /dev/ttyS0. On the NetWinder kernel supplied with the DM #12 disk image, you must take the following steps to run:
  • insmod the serial.o module
  • insmod the slhc.o module
  • insmod the slip.o module
  • insmod the ppp.o module

  • All of the modules can be found under /lib/modules/2.0.35

    February 3, 1999 - Haven't been able to work on the 'Winder for a few days due to other committments. Transferred over some known-good configuration files for Diald on a RedHat 5.1-based box. With the modules insmod'd, diald starts without any problem and sets up the proxyed slip interface and routes. An attempt to access the Internet fires off pppd, which in turn fires off chat. However, chat does not appear to get any response from the modem, and times out. Connecting directly to the modem via cu poses no problems: I can dial out and log in without difficulty. Running chat with my connect script appears normal. The pppd on the 'Winder disk image is v2.2.0, while the pppd on the RH-5.1 is v2.3 patch level 3. Hmmmm..... I'll be checking to see if a newer pppd is available - I don't remember anyone else indicating a problem here. If you have any ideas, drop me a line.

    Later on February 3 - Great Joy! Downloaded the new pppd rpm from, installed, and my modem can dial! Testing of link commences tomorrow.

    February 4, 1999 - Terrible Pain! My modem dials, pppd comes up ... and immediately goes down. Apparently this rpm needs PAM. Well, back to the old ftp prompt...

    February 5, 1999 - Success! Installed the new PAM rpm (pam-0.64-2), but couldn't test until today. Everything worked beautifully. To recap:

  • Running diald 0.16.5
  • NetWinder DM, Disk Image #12
  • Upgrade to ppp-2.3.3-4
  • Upgrade to pam-0.64-2
  • insmod's as above
  • NetWinder serial port is ttyS0
  • This band-aids my number one issue. I'll take another swing at diald-0.98.0 later...