Divorcing Apple Project: Reverse Tethering iPhone

I need some way to share the hardwired Librem 13 Ethernet connection -> iPhone.

What’s the simplest way to setup reverse tethering with an iPhone?

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I don’t have iPhone (and Librem laptop fwiw) but in general you can do either wifi hotspot or bluetooth hotspot. Unfortunately librem laptops are not the strongest players in wireless area - so you’ll probably need USB dongles (either wifi or BT) and some proprietary blobs (which will probably defeat the purpose of having L13 in the first place).
BT hotspot (pan) I guess should be easily achievable with NetworkManager, if not you can always use blueman.
WiFi - should be more natural and the least painful (anything can connect to wifi, even my printer) but would need to be careful to choose the right USB dongle - the wifi chip need to support AP mode (being AccessPoint):

 # iw phy | grep 'valid interface combinations' -A2
    valid interface combinations:
             * #{ managed } <= 1, #{ AP, P2P-client, P2P-GO } <= 1, #{ P2P-device } <= 1,
               total <= 3, #channels <= 2

Here mine supports being client (managed) and server (AP or P2P Go ).

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Thanks. But my preference would be to share the network via a USB -> iPhone connection. Is there a simple way to do that, through network sharing preferences somewhere?

I don’t use Wifi, unless I absolutely have to. (And if you had a dark field microscope and studied your blood after it was exposed was to Wifi, cell, or bluetooth field, neither would you.)

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Something makes me believe wireless communication are the only non proprietary protocols apple devices support. Fortunately I never had any apple device so cannot complain :slight_smile:

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wifi and 5G are different but here it is

what a shit show … for everybody who’s reading


you will not achieve anything in this way … rather you would only incur the wrath of authorities and perhaps even worse - give them a motive to harden their grip on everything …

these misinformation campaigns have only THAT goal in mind …

also unrelated but might make you think twice before acting or encouraging such behavior …

“The Question was how should we maneuver them into firing the first shot … it was desirable to make sure the Japanese be the ones to do this so that there should remain no doubt as to who were the aggressors” < Henry Stimson, Secretary of War, November 25, 1941


“We become what we think about most of the time, and that’s the strangest secret.” < Earl Nightingale

That might be true but, proprietary or not, provided that Linux supports the protocol it can work - and I have some recollection that it does.

So I connected a spiPhone via USB to a Linux computer just now.

I turned on Personal Hotspot. It asked whether I wanted to turn on Bluetooth, and I said ‘no’, so it said OK, WiFi and USB only it is then. All was good. I then turned off WiFi. It said OK. I then turned off mobile … and it then turned off Personal Hotspot.

Even with the connection not really usable (i.e. in the above final state), I did still have a new interface showing in ifconfig on the Linux computer with a very opaque interface name (but no doubt highly ‘predictable’) and a 172.x.y.z IP address.

So that suggests that the spiPhone only wants to tether (not reverse tether). That doesn’t mean that it can’t work. It might mean that you would need to install an app or random third party software. Who knows?

That is over and above hacking around on the Linux side to allow it to route (and would probably need NATting too) - which may be beyond my pay grade but I’m sure you can find posts on the internet with instructions.

My suggestion is that you really need a full divorce i.e. the combination of open source Linux laptop and open source Linux phone is more likely to be able to be gotten working by someone than beating your head against the proprietary wall of Apple.

That said, I don’t know where tethering sits on the current Librem 5 roadmap (never mind about reverse tethering).

When has the government ever told you the truth?

Do your own thinking. Get your own data. Come to your own conclusions and act accordingly.

5G is killing you and your family. And nothing the government, government shills, “debunkers”, or special interests tell you will change that.

Nobody has the right to assault another. And everybody has the right to protect themselves from assault.

No badge, no papers, no “authority” will ever make it right for anyone to be able to assault your family, nor will they ever make it wrong for you to protect your family from that assault.

It doesn’t matter that they have the sanction of the “king” to assault you. It is just as wrong as if you assaulted another. And it would be wrong to bend over, and take that assault without resistance.

5G is assaulting your family worse than Hitler ever did to the Jews.

Do your own thinking. 5G is killing you. 3G, 4G, Wifi, they are all killing you too. 5G however, is a much more acute kill.

Do not believe a word I say. Do your own thinking. Do your own experiments. Come to your own conclusions.

And if you come to the conclusion that 5G is killing you, then you are morally obligated to wake up your community to that fact.

If your community comes together and says “NO” to 5G, yet it is forced upon them, they are within full Divine right to take matters into their own hands and see that their community and their family is protected.

That kind of behavior in this world gone man with sociopaths and tyrants running the show, should be celebrated by the people.

If the community is too fluoridated, too brainwashed, and so stupid that they trust the government (and the very carriers installing 5G) to tell them the truth, and they vote they want 5G, then get the hell out of that community.

You share the karma of the stupidity of your community. That is unfortunate but true. Wake up your community. Or move to one that is a little less asleep.

when that truth works to their advantage :slight_smile:

or just buy a few acres around your house where YOU control what gets erected around your house …

in urban areas where the population is very polarized, poor and brainwashed it can be “mission-impossible” to try to explain something as complex as this using “lay” language that “normies” understand …

i admire your zeal but unfortunately for most people going against the establishment is like giving yourself to a hungry constrictor snake :sweat:

on the other hand extreme poverty could lead to a technology free zone which might get rid of wifi, 3g/4g/5g almost entirely but that’s like saying if you stop eating you will not get food-poisoning … Elysium reference here

well i think that’s enough off-topic here :slight_smile: best-of-luck in your wired tethering adventures … i’m waiting for my L5 to arrive and hopefully by then this global-shit-show that we’re in right now would have subsided … :mask:

So to summarize - if you can convince your phone to use internet over USB - we can guide you how to make your Linux an Internet Gateway. It wouldn’t differ much from if you connect the phone over wifi or bluetooth - one way or another the PC need to act as a gateway and provide necessary networks services.

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Possibly general discussion of the health effects of wireless communication would be best taken to Round Table - and leave this topic for trying to reverse tether.

Potential solution:

Internet -> USB-> Old computer with Ethernet port -> sharing network to a 5 port spliter -> hardwired connections from the splitter to all devices

To execute:
A) Setting up network sharing out the Ethernet port to the splitter. How’s it done in Linux?
B) The lightest, fastest Linux distro to act as the router computer. Which would work best for this?

Network over USB does seem to work. With the spiPhone connected to the Linux computer via USB, and with Personal Hotspot enabled on the spiPhone, I get an extra (temporary, dynamic) interface on the Linux computer and the interface on the Linux end has a 172.x.y.z IP address. I can ping the 172.x.y.w IP address of the spiPhone.

I am not aware that I have even installed any specific packages to make that work. It just worked. However this is Ubuntu.

Internet for the spiPhone over that connection I think will be a problem. That is, the spiPhone will retain its normal default gateway and will insist on sending internet traffic via mobile broadband (if WiFi is disabled) or via WiFi (if WiFi is enabled). That would be my guess. Maybe maybe maybe if jailbroken there could be a way to override that.

As soon as I turn off mobile broadband, regardless of the state of WiFi, the Personal Hotspot is disabled.

For a fun exercise, one could at least try to redirect HTTP traffic to use the USB connection by configuring the HTTP proxy on the spiPhone as 172.x.y.z, and implementing an HTTP proxy on the Linux computer.

I am unclear whether there is a difference between what you are attempting to do with that, as compared with your original request.

Perhaps it would help if you explained what you were originally attempting to achieve with reverse tethering.

Did you want to block / filter / examine / alter traffic coming out of the spiPhone?
Did you want to operate the spiPhone ‘radio free’?

In many situations where you have an ethernet connection available to you, you will also have WiFi available to you. If not then using a small portable WAP (travel router) should solve that problem - and you can get some pretty neat devices.

the last time i tried this was way back in 2014 with win7 and bb-q10 and it worked through the bb proprietary software … but the phone became really hot even only on 3g … that’s 1.5 ghz dual core with 2 gb RAM; all mobile components … you know smartphone and all that jazz …

i’m looking forward to trying this with an L5 but i’m not holding my breath for a trully great experience on the v1 … even if it’s evergreen :sweat:

yes there are portable 3G/4G routers that can take a dedicated cellular SIM card or work with an external dongle through a usb port and have much better hw set-up in regards to heat management … BUT they are not open-hardware … some can have support for https://librecmc.org/

i see no RYF certified 3G/4G routers here YET > https://ryf.fsf.org/

don’t forget that even if you get a L5 from Purism the firmware of the modem is locked tight … and maybe this is true for all 3G/4G routers on the market as well (both open-hw or closed-hw)

the L5 is special in the fact that it’s manufacturer thought of ways to meet the risks of that closed-modem-firmware with some special EXTRA components on the PCB … search in the documentation … it’s been covered and here on the forums if i remember correctly > Who asked for the L5 schematics?

Ah, no. If that’s a requirement, you will be waiting for the Librem Travel Router. :slight_smile:

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Belkin makes this adapter, and if you have a PoE network, the PoE switch will even charge the phone. This will let you connect directly to your network over a wire, or you can bridge through your Librem if you have a USB Ethernet adapter for the computer. Should be available elsewhere than Apple.

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I agree with Emily. All this stuff is not healthy and 5G is definitely the worst. I remembered my training when I was to take an amateur radio exam in the US. We were using VHF and UHF frequencies and all books on the subject agreed on this: “you should never raise your eyes and look a transmitting antenna.” And now you have all these low quality antennas next to your head and eyes transmitting to a much higher frequency and suddenly “all is safe, nothing to worry”. All Biology professors I have talked to also agreed on this: cells do not like being in such fields. Self correcting mechanisms of the cells are inhibited. Research in this direction is never funded.

If our Banks did not insist on having a cell phone to be able to use internet banking I would not use such devices. Good for L5 that at least has the means to deactivate transmission.

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Emily, where did you get that info on the effect WiFi has on you?
I would like to read it.

Not sure if this is useful but there is a good article in the Linux magazine, Issue 234, May 2020.
It explains how to make a Pi Zero into a universal USB flash drive that emulates storage, a serial port, Ethernet etc…
You can buy the boards assembled and pick up the software you need via the ref from the article.
Hope that helps