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How to configure a Sun as a SLIP server

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From bronze!!gilbertd Sat May 30 13:49:41 EST 1992
Article: 11562 of comp.sys.mac.comm
Newsgroups: comp.sys.mac.comm
Path: bronze!!gilbertd
From: [email protected] (Don Gilbert)
Subject: How to configure a Sun as a SLIP server
Message-ID: <[email protected]>
Sender: [email protected] (USENET News System)
Organization: Biology, Indiana University - Bloomington
Date: Sat, 30 May 92 18:39:22 GMT

This document is directed at Unix workstation administrators/programmers
who may want to set up a SLIP service for Mac/PC/Unix dialup users.


SLIP is Serial Line IP.  A SLIP server enables a home computer (Mac, PC, or
Unix) to connect thru telephone dialup to the Internet.  For Macintoshes,
there are now 2 or 3 vendors selling a SLIP module to work with Apple's
MacTCP software.  There are also other, and probably better, ways to
get a SLIP service than is described here.  Some terminal server hardware 
includes SLIP support. Some commercial venders sell dialup IP service.

This describes my results recently from two days of hassles w/ free slipware 
for Sun Sparcstation (sun4c model using SunOS 4.1.1).  Your mileage will vary
depending on the Unix workstation you wish to set up as SLIP server.  The Mac
side is much easier.

Suppose your organization's class B network number is 139.123, and you are
subnetting with a class C-sized network mask of 0xffffff00.  Your
departmental LAN is subnet, with an ethernetted Unix workstation
called SunGod ( among the other workstations on this subnet.  A
modem is attached to one of SunGod's serial ports.  A Macintosh named MacHome
wishes to connect to the network thru SLIP.

Steps for this, using freely available slip software for Suns are:

1) plug a modem into a serial port on your Sun.

2) build in the SLIP pseudodevice into the Sun Unix kernel.  Use
   either slipware 4.0, cslip (compressed slip) based on 4.0 or
   slipware 4.1 [see ftp refs below].  Unix kernel setup is only
   for knowledgeable Unix programmers/administrators.

3) compile and install the SLIP driver program(s).  This may be 
  "sliplogin", which also uses the /etc/hosts.slip table and 
   which seems most convenient for multiple users, and which leaves
   your Sun serial port available for regular dialins at other times.
   Or "slattach" which attaches a serial port on the Sun as a 
   semi-permanent SLIP port.
4) Assign MacHome an IP address, for example, 
   in Sungod's /etc/hosts table:

  If using sliplogin, construct /etc/hosts.slip table:
	# /etc/hosts.slip 
	# notes: local-address is the SLIP server (SunGod)
	# remote-address is the dialup computer (MacHome)
	#username       mode    local-address   remote-address  netmask
	myaccount       normal

5) Link the remote IP host MacHome to SunGod's ethernet address.  This
   rather important step is not discussed in the slipware documents. Use 
   command like "arp -s  RemoteIPaddress  LocalEthernetAddress  pub".  
   See arp manpage.
   Interactively as root on Sungod for testing and/or in Sungod's 
   /etc/rc.local add this line:
     arp -s machome `ifconfig le0 | sed -n "/ether/s/ether//gp"` pub
6) On MacHome, if for instance Versaterm SLIP driver is used with MacTCP,
   configure Versaterm AdminSlip properly.  If using cslip on Sungod, must
   check the compressed slip option on Mac, otherwise uncheck this.  Insert
   the IP address of MacHome, the net mask (as above) for your subnet setup,
   and a gateway IP number, as used for other computers on this subnet.

7) dial up from MacHome to SunGod's modem using your Mac Slip program (e.g.,
   Versaterm AdminSLIP).  Log in w/ user and password as if you were logging 
   on for interactive session.  If using sliplogin, you can run this kind of 
   script at logon (where modem is connected to SunGod's /dev/ttya serial port):
   /usr/bin/mesg n    # may not be needed
   stty -tostop       # may not be needed
   # sliplogin, called by user, reads /etc/hosts.slip for local:remote nodes
   exec sliplogin < /dev/ttya

8) Slip should now be working, try running NCSA Telnet (MacTCP), GopherApp,
   Eudora (MacTCP) and other such MacTCP programs.
9) When session is done, hang up slip line.  Modem on SunGod now should be
   free for other users' regular or slip sessions.
Repeat steps (7) to (9) as needed.  Don't call me in the morning.

  All needed slip server software for Sun Sparcstation and probably other
  Unix computers, see  
   102751 Aug 22  1991 csn-slip-package.tar.Z  < contains slip-4.1
    26148 Oct 31  1989 slip-4.0.tar.Z	< useable, see also cslip version

   271573 Apr  3  1990 cslipbeta.tar.Z  < usable, slip-4.1 may be better

 The Morningstar manual for their PPP/SLIP software is available
 freely for ftp at  It contains information I needed
 to set up a slip server that I could not find in any of the free
 SLIP packages.  
 			and	 /pub/ppp/Free-SLIP-and-PPP 
>From Steve Dorner's recent SLIP for Mac review:

VersaTerm SLIP comes with VersaTerm 4.6.2, which goes for about $90
mail-order, and includes an FTP server and client, MacTCP, a Telnet
connection tool, and a time server and client.  Educational institutions
are eligible for a reduced price arrangement. Contact Synergy Software,
ads in many Mac magazines or via mail order software houses.

MacSLIP is $49.95.  Site licenses will be available for a reasonable price.
Contact [email protected] for more information.

InterCon has announced a Mac SLIP module.  Contact [email protected]

Don Gilbert                                     [email protected]
biocomputing office, biology dept., indiana univ., bloomington, in 47405