Tuesday, July 10

Connection failure using an express card on Mac OSX in Australia and the solution: uninstalling wwan support

The problem
Express card (Novatel Merlin XU870) cannot be found by MacBookPro after an OS Update using a Vodafone sim card (other providers also no doubt).
How I met this problem
I installed "WWAN Support Update" (1.0) when it was offered to me by my mac's software update. This was a mistake, but one that many people made. This update prevented my Novatel Merlin card from being found by the Vodafone software which had previously worked without problems (in Germany).
The software update installed files to support US providers but prevented the European ones from connecting (the software finds the newly installed Cingular driver before the Vodafone driver and fails to find the card).
To get around this, German Vodafone support told me to delete some files whose names I unfortunately did not note down at the time. This solved the problem. I think they were all files with Verizon in the name.
I had to be careful not to reinstall that update, the support people told me and I didn't. But apparently after an update in Australia of the Mac OS - MacOS Update (Intel) (10.4.10) - the connection again failed.
After trying to solve the problem with the friendly Vodafone support people in Australia, I came up with the following strategy based on discussions with them and other sources.
The solution
Open Macintosh HD.
The following files need to be deleted (Administrator password needed):
  • Library/Modem Scripts/WWAN Support
  • System/Library/Core Services/Menu Extras/ WWAN menu
Now two Kernel extensions have to be deleted (also requires administrator password). To get to them, open Macintosh HD and go to /System/Library/Extensions/IOSerialFamily.kext, then ctrl+click (or right-click) to "show package contents". This enables you to find the path to:
  • Contents/PlugIns/AppleWWANSupport.kext
  • Contents/PlugIns/AppleWWANVerizon.kext
Remove AppleWWANSupport.kext and AppleWWANVerizon.kext.
That is four items deleted. This may be sufficient. However I was also advised to remove these three files, which also have 'Verizon' in their name, from:
Library/Application Support/
  • AppleVerizonSupport.kext
  • AppleVerizonSupportKicker.kext
  • verizon.menu
I deleted these three too and it worked, but you may like to try it without deleting these last three. I am also not sure if they really were in: Library/Application Support/ or in a sub-directory.
I wrote this down while on the phone with my advisor. I can't check where they were because I moved them. Please leave a comment if you can confirm this location. Also if it works without deleting them.
Deleting them has apparently had no adverse effects.
Now you have to re-install the Vodafone software without the Merlin card inserted, restart the machine, insert the card and start the Vodafone application. Choose a location-provider which will run a modem script with connection details (e.g. AU Vodafone).
Then it is ready to connect.
Thanks to:
technik spielkram (German)
for their solution
Ahmed from Vodafone support
I offer this information without any guarantee.

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