Configuring 3G modems

To configure a 3G modem on pfSense on a current supported release, plug in a Known Working 3G-4G Modems and log into the web interface to begin configuration.

Configuring PPP

Browse to Interfaces > (assign), and click the PPPs tab. Click + on that screen.

In the Link Type drop down, select PPP.

In the Link interface(s) box, the list will be populated with serial ports on the system. Select the port for the modem. A modem may list several serial ports. Typically it is the last one, but may require some trial and error. Future versions of pfSense may properly auto-detect modems but that has historically been a source of problems.

Optionally fill in a Description, which will be used to reference this PPP configuration in other parts of the web interface.

Under Service Provider, select the Country. The Provider list for that country will appear, then select the provider of the card. Then in the Plan drop down, select the plan. This should adequately fill in all the PPP details needed for the connection. Click Save.

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At the PPPs screen, the newly created PPP interface will be listed.

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Assigning the PPP Interface

Next the PPP interface must be created. Click the Interface assignments tab, and click the + to add a new interface. Select the PPP interface, click Save, then Apply changes.

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Enable the PPP Interface

Now browse to Interfaces > OPT1 (or the interface name shown for the the PPP interface when it was assigned above). Check the Enable Interface box, rename it if desired, and click Save. Do not change anything else on the page. Then click Apply changes.

Check the interface status

Browse to Status > Interfaces to check the status of the newly created and assigned PPP interface. If it does not show connected, check the logs under Status > System logs, PPP tab to see why its connection is failing.

Note that some connection problems are a lack of signal. If the 3G modem is in a location with poor reception, such as an equipment room, datacenter, rack, etc, then it may be advisable to use a longer USB cable and/or Antenna to achieve a better signal.