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Old 22-09-2010, 11:47   #1
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Join Date: Sep 2010
Posts: 2
GPS NMEA output from the Sierra AirCard 881 working

Couldn't find an explanation of how to get the GPS working on this card in linux, so after a long night here it is.
Note: This is the 881 not the 881u, the 881 is a pcmcia version, as apposed to USB, but it's all USB in the end.

Ubuntu lucid 10.04

- Establish a connection to the serial ports on the card
- Find the names of the new com ports
- Install a terminal emulator
- Start tracking
- Option Reset the card

Establishing a connection:
Insert the card
In a terminal run
~$ lsusb
Note the ID numbers of the card
In my case "ID 1199:6851 Sierra blah blah"
Using the numbers you obtained above, run
~$ sudo modprobe usbserial vendor=1199 product=6851
Find the names of the new com ports
~$ dmesg
The result should contain something about "...Sierra USB modem converter now attached to ttyUSB0 ...ttyUSB1 ...ttyUSB2 ...ttyUSB3"

Install a terminal emulator
I used minicom, run:
~$ sudo apt-get install minicom
Start tracking
in my case the AT command port for the card ended up being /dev/ttyUSB2. My NMEA port is /dev/ttyUSB3.
In a terminal start minicom:
~$ minicom -s
Pick "Serial port setup"
Change "Serial device" to /dev/ttyUSB2 -hit enter, and enter again
Pick "Exit" - hit enter

The modem should initialize and the card will say "blah blah blah OK"
Enter the AT command:
Theres a description of AT!GPSTRACK in here
Open another terminal and use minicom to test the NMEA port. In my case ttyUSB3.The card should be printing out something. If it doesn't have a fix it still seems to print empty entries every second.
Close minicom -- ctrl + a then x --

Point your software at the NMEA port.
Try to get lost :P

Option reset the card
When I was trying to get this working one of the things I did was to reset the card. I don't know if it's necessary, and I haven't needed to do it again. Anyway the AT command is:
Card says "OK" then gos through a power cycle
the ports get reassigned and minicom loses its connection. after restarting the PC the port names went back to 0,1,2 and 3

Thanks to:
Ubuntu USB-Serial port install procedure
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