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How to disable La Fonera

Posted by coldtobi | 13 Jun, 2007, 11:10

Due the recent security problems, here's a short how-to disable the public FON Access Point without interferring with the private network.

Note: A this is probably considered as breach of the agreement you made with FON, this is on your own risk. You probably want to suspend roaming as well while your fonera is crippled.

Just unplugging the antenna is not a good solution, as it might destroy some electronics in the La Fonera.  

Disclaimer: DO NOT BRICK YOUR FONERA. BY MODIFING THE FONERA THORUGH SSH, IT IS POSSIBLE TO BRICK IT, ESPECIALLY IF YOU DON'T KNOW WHAT YOU ARE DOING. ALSO THIS HOWTO CAN CONTAIN ERRORS. IF IT BREAKS IT, IT IS YOUR PROBLEM, NOT MINE. YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED! (However, a factory reset should always be possible, at least you did not screw it up completly.) 

Requirements for this hack are:

- A La Fonera with SSH Access. 

There are several possiblies to disable the public access point.  

A) Being fair to FON: Disabling also the "fon_home"-heartbeat

With the above mehtod, the chillispot and the heartbeat is still working. I think, for fairness, if the Fonera is not used as a public hotspot, we should also not pretend that the access point is fully operational.

So I suggest, that you follow these instructions:

1) Disable /etc/init.d/N40thinclient by e.g mv /etc/init.d/N40thinclient /etc/init.d/_N40thinclient

2) Disable /etc/init.d/N50chillispot  by e.g mv /etc/init.d/N50chillispot /etc/init.d/_N50chillispot

(The other methods I gonna write later, have to work now) 

 

Undoing it is simple. Just rename the files back to their original names:

mv /etc/init.d/_N40thinclient /etc/init.d/N40thinclient

mv /etc/init.d/_N50chillispot /etc/init.d/N50chillispot

  

A) Just disable the wireless interface

This was the variant I wrote first, but as Daniel mentioned: Far to complicated. So here's the orignal text, just for reference. 

This variant is easy, but not fair to FON, as it pretends that your FON is online. Please do it the other way. 

1. Connect to your fonera

2. cd /tmp

3. Create a file S99StopWLAN with this content

 #!/bin/sh

crontab_file="/etc/crontabs/root"

cat $crontab_file | grep -v "ifconfig ath0 down" > $crontab_file

echo "*/5 * * * * ifconfig ath0 down" >>$crontab_file

4. chmod +x S99StopWLAN

5. Test it   with

    ./S99StopWLAN

6.   Latest Five Minutes later, the public interface should go down. 

7.   If it does, and you can still access your box (try reconnecting to your la fonera through ssh), you can arm it:   

        mv /tmp/S99StopWLAN /etc/init.d 

        Then it will be executed every boot. 

Undo instructions

To undo this variant, execute these commands:

cat etc/crontabs/root | grep -v "ifconfig ath0 down" > $crontab_file

rm /etc/init.d/S99StopWLAN

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2 Comments | "How to disable La Fonera" »

  1. Kyros : How to switch on?

    13/06/2007, at 12:23 [ Reply ]

    Hi Coldtobi,

    how about to insert the way back, too?
    That would mean a howto to switch on ahain.

    Regards, Kyros



    AW: Good point... I'll add it...

  2. Daniel : Simple

    13/06/2007, at 16:33 [ Reply ]

    Well, this is a lot of work to do, it's easier to do this:

    # Disable public signal + chilli
    $ mv /etc/init.d/N50chillispot /etc/init.d/chillispot
    $ restart

    # Reenable
    $ mv /etc/init.d/chillispot /etc/init.d/N50chillispot
    $ restart

    I don't know why everyone tries the hardest way...