Tag: Mobile broadband

Internet via Bluetooth in Linux: how to set up and why the speed is slow

In this tutorial, you will learn how to set up an Internet connection via Bluetooth in Linux, as well as why the Internet speed via Bluetooth is slow.

How to connect my computer to the Internet through my phone via Bluetooth

Internet via Bluetooth is one of the options for using a mobile phone to access the Internet from a computer. Looking ahead, we note that this is not the best option because:

1) the connection speed will be quite slow,

2) the setup, although generally simple, is slightly more complicated than other connection options

As alternative methods for accessing the Internet from a computer via a mobile phone, the following are recommended:

If your computer does not have Wi-Fi and you do not have a USB data cable for connecting your phone by wire, then the method described in this article is suitable for you – accessing the Internet via the mobile phone's Bluetooth tethering.

The connection algorithm is as follows:

  1. Pairing your phone and computer via Bluetooth
  2. Turning on the Bluetooth tethering on the phone
  3. Setting up a computer, which consists in connecting to the phone's Bluetooth tethering (selecting Bluetooth as the Access point)

So, let's look at how to connect a computer to the Internet through Bluetooth and your mobile phone in Linux.

Checking and starting the Bluetooth service

Connecting a mobile phone to a computer via Bluetooth is called pairing.

Check if the Bluetooth service is running on your computer – to do this, connect your Bluetooth device (if it is disconnected) and look for the Bluetooth icon next to the clock:

The Bluetooth service status can be checked on the command line:

systemctl status bluetooth

If the status of the service is other than “active (running)” and you do not see the Bluetooth tray icon, then you need to execute the following commands from this section. If the service is running, skip the following commands and skip directly to the next section to pair your phone with your computer.

Install required packages in Debian, Linux Mint, Ubuntu, Kali Linux and their derivatives:

sudo apt install bluez blueman

Install required packages in Arch Linux, Manjaro, BlackArch and their derivatives:

sudo pacman -S bluez bluez-utils pulseaudio-bluetooth blueman

The following commands are the same for all distributions.

Start bluetooth service:

sudo systemctl start bluetooth

Adding it to startup:

sudo systemctl enable bluetooth

Connecting a mobile phone to a computer via Bluetooth (phone pairing)

Turn on Bluetooth on your mobile phone.

Both a mobile phone and a computer can initiate pairing.

On your mobile phone or computer, search for Bluetooth devices.

If the devices do not see each other, then start searching for devices at the same time on the computer and mobile phone.

When the desired device is found, click on it to start pairing.

A prompt will appear on your mobile phone to establish pairing – agree to this proposal.

   

After that, on the computer it will be proposed to pair with the phone – agree (“Confirm”). If you are prompted to connect by someone else's device, then reject the request (“Deny”).

Immediately after pairing, or at the next connection, an authentication request will be made – the options are “Always accept” and “Accept”. The “Deny” button means rejecting the request.

After pairing, and also if you have selected the “Always accept authentication” option, the devices will connect to each other automatically as soon as Bluetooth is enabled on them.

Turning on the Bluetooth tethering

Go to the settings of your phone, this can be done by unrolling the curtain from top to bottom and clicking the gear icon.

Further, the name of the settings items may differ on different phone models, but the essence will be the same everywhere.

Go to the “Connections” section.

Find the item “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” there.

Turn on “Bluetooth tethering”.

   

Connect to a Bluetooth tethering on a computer

Your computer's network settings should now show an option for Bluetooth, Mobile broadband, or similar.

Activate this connection so that the computer starts using the Internet via Bluetooth.

You can turn on the Bluetooth connection directly on the computer, bypassing the steps to turn on the Bluetooth tethering on the phone as shown above – in this case, the phone will prompt you to Allow Bluetooth tethering.

Why is the Internet speed slow over Bluetooth

When successfully connecting to the Internet via Bluetooth, the first thing you may notice is the speed of the connection. On the most modern Bluetooth 5.* protocols, it is up to 1.4 megabits per second (2 megabits per second at the moment). As you can see from the screenshot, the speedtest.net Internet connection speed test showed a speed of 1.66 megabits per second.

This is 210-220 kilobytes per second, if these units are more familiar to you. This is very slow, and on Bluetooth versions 4.* the speed is only 800 kilobits per second, that is, 2 times slower.

See also: How to find out the Bluetooth version for the adapter and peripherals in Linux

Thus, if the speed of the Internet via Bluetooth is too slow for you, all you can do to increase the speed of the Internet via Bluetooth is to switch to the Bluetooth 5.* protocol (both devices – the phone and the computer – must support this protocol). If this speed is not enough for you, then use Wi-Fi or data transfer via USB:

How to use an Android phone to access the Internet on a computer without Wi-Fi in Linux

In the article “How to share mobile Internet with other phones and computers”, we already talked about how to use a mobile phone as an Access Point, but what if the computer does not have a Wi-Fi adapter or drivers are not installed for it?

This article is devoted to the answer to this question – it tells how to connect a computer to the mobile Internet using a USB cable.

In fact, this method is even simpler than creating a mobile hotspot.

How to Use Android Phone as USB Tethering in Linux

As you can see in the screenshot, the computer does not have an Internet connection.

Start by connecting your phone to your computer with a USB cable.

Then go to the settings of your phone, this can be done by unrolling the curtain from top to bottom and clicking the gear icon.

Further, the name of the settings items may differ on different phone models, but the essence will be the same everywhere.

Go to the “Connections” section.

Find the item “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” there.

Turn on “USB tethering”.

Everything is ready – now your computer is online and can connect to the Internet. You can install Wi-Fi drivers or perform other network actions that you need.

No additional configuration is required on the computer. Now the computer is connected to the network – the USB tethering connection has a wired connection icon.

What to do if the USB modem item is not active or missing

The USB modem item may be inactive in two cases:

  1. The phone is not connected to the computer with a USB cable.
  2. USB cable does not support data transfer

Try another USB cable – the one that came with the phone should support data transfer.

Things to remember when using a mobile phone for the Internet

  1. Please note that if the phone is not connected to Wi-Fi, then mobile data will be used – if you do not have an unlimited data plan, then this will cost you money.
  2. You can connect your phone to a Wi-Fi network and still use it as a USB modem. The result is that your computer is using Wi-Fi through your phone, and not mobile data.
  3. If, when you turn on the USB modem, there is still no Internet access on the computer, then check if other network connections are disabled: for example, via Wi-Fi or by wire, the computer can be connected to a router that does not have Internet (disabled for non-payment or damaged cable).
  4. If you disconnect the phone from the USB cable, and then connect it to the computer again, you will need to turn USB tethering on again in the phone each time
  5. While the mobile phone is operating as a USB modem, you cannot send and receive files from it

How to enable file transfer between computer and phone

When the USB modem is enabled, it is not possible to exchange files between the computer and the phone.

In order to make it possible to copy files, you can disconnect the phone from the computer, and then reconnect and, when asked for permission to transfer files, provide it.

Another option is to disable the USB modem and enable data transfer (or only charging) in the phone settings without disconnecting it from the USB cable. To do this, open the curtain and expand the notification “USB tethering turned on”.

Click to configure the USB connection to the corresponding label.

Instead of “USB tethering” select “USB tethering” or “Charging phone only”.

How to connect a computer to the Internet via Bluetooth in Windows

Table of contents

1. How to connect my computer to the Internet through my phone via Bluetooth

2. Connecting a mobile phone to a computer via Bluetooth (phone pairing)

3. Turning on the Bluetooth tethering

4. Connect to a Bluetooth tethering on a computer

5. How to Disconnect from a Bluetooth Connection

5.1 To turn off Bluetooth Internet on a computer

5.2 To turn off Bluetooth Internet on your mobile phone

6. “The connection with the Bluetooth network device failed” error

7. Why is the Internet speed slow over Bluetooth


In this tutorial, you will learn how to set up an Internet connection via Bluetooth in Windows, as well as why the Internet speed via Bluetooth is slow.

1. How to connect my computer to the Internet through my phone via Bluetooth

Internet via Bluetooth is one of the options for using a mobile phone to access the Internet from a computer. Looking ahead, we note that this is not the best option because:

1) the connection speed will be quite slow,

2) the setup, although generally simple, is slightly more complicated than other connection options

As alternative methods for accessing the Internet from a computer via a mobile phone, the following are recommended:

If your computer does not have Wi-Fi and you do not have a USB data cable for connecting your phone by wire, then the method described in this article is suitable for you – accessing the Internet via the mobile phone's Bluetooth tethering.

The connection algorithm is as follows:

  1. Pairing your phone and computer via Bluetooth
  2. Turning on the Bluetooth tethering on the phone
  3. Setting up a computer, which consists in connecting to the phone's Bluetooth tethering (selecting Bluetooth as the Access point)

So, let's look at how to connect a computer to the Internet through Bluetooth and your mobile phone in Windows.

2. Connecting a mobile phone to a computer via Bluetooth (phone pairing)

Turn on Bluetooth in Windows if you haven't already. This can be done by clicking on the network connection button next to the clock.

In Windows, right-click on the Bluetooth icon and select “Go to Settings” from the context menu that opens.

Click the “Add device” button.

In the window that opens, select “Bluetooth”.

Turn on Bluetooth on your mobile phone.

Start Scan for Bluetooth devices.

If the devices do not see each other, then start searching for devices at the same time on the computer and mobile phone. If you don't succeed the first time, try again.

When the desired device is found, click on it to start pairing.

Do the same on the computer.

A prompt will appear on your mobile phone to establish pairing – agree to this proposal.

Do the same on the computer – click the “Yes” button.

Make sure the connection was successful.

If the connection fails, try again.

3. Turning on the Bluetooth tethering

Go to the settings of your phone, this can be done by unrolling the curtain from top to bottom and clicking the gear icon.

Further, the name of the settings items may differ on different phone models, but the essence will be the same everywhere.

Go to the “Connections” section.

Find the item “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” there.

Turn on “Bluetooth tethering”.

   

4. Connect to a Bluetooth tethering on a computer

Right-click on the “Network” icon and select “Network and Internet settings” in the context menu that opens.

In the window that opens, select “Advanced network settings”.

Then select “More network adapter options”.

In the Network Connections window, find Bluetooth Network Connection, right-click it and select View Bluetooth Network Devices.

In the “Devices and Printers” window that opens, find the phone, right-click on it. In the context menu, select “Connect using” and select “Access point” in the list that opens.

After that, the computer will be connected to the Internet via the Bluetooth of the mobile phone.

5. How to Disconnect from a Bluetooth Connection

To turn off Bluetooth Internet on a computer

Right-click on the “Network” icon (next to the clock) → Advanced network settings → More network adapter options → Right-click on “Bluetooth Network Connection” → select “View Bluetooth Network Devices” from the context menu.

In the “Devices and Printers” window that opens, find the phone, right-click on it. Select “Disconnect from device network” from the context menu.

To turn off Bluetooth Internet on your mobile phone

Go to Settings → Connections → Bluetooth.

Click on the gear of the connection you are using.

Turn off “Internet connection sharing”.

6. “The connection with the Bluetooth network device failed” error

At the stage “4. Connect to a Bluetooth tethering on a computer” you may encounter an error:

The connection with the Bluetooth network device failed. The device may already be connected to another computer, or it may need to be configured to accept connections from this computer. Consult your device documentation for further information.

It usually means that you did not follow the steps described in step “3. Turning on the Bluetooth tethering”.

On the phone, you will be prompted to “Allow Bluetooth tethering”, if you select “Allow”, then the reconnection will be successful.

7. Why is the Internet speed slow over Bluetooth

When successfully connecting to the Internet via Bluetooth, the first thing you may notice is the speed of the connection. On the most modern Bluetooth 5.* protocols, it is up to 1.4 megabits per second (2 megabits per second at the moment). As you can see from the screenshot, the speedtest.net Internet connection speed test showed a speed of 1.66 megabits per second.

This is 210-220 kilobytes per second, if these units are more familiar to you. This is very slow, and on Bluetooth versions 4.* the speed is only 800 kilobits per second, that is, 2 times slower.

See also: How to check Bluetooth version in Windows

Thus, if the speed of the Internet via Bluetooth is too slow for you, all you can do to increase the speed of the Internet via Bluetooth is to switch to the Bluetooth 5.* protocol (both devices – the phone and the computer – must support this protocol). If this speed is not enough for you, then use Wi-Fi or data transfer via USB:

How to connect your phone to the Internet using another phone’s Bluetooth

How to share mobile Internet for another phone via Wi-Fi and Bluetooth

Using Bluetooth, a mobile phone can share the Internet (share an Internet connection) with another phone or computer. The speed of Bluetooth is quite slow, so it is recommended to create a mobile Wi-Fi hotspot on your phone and distribute the Internet through it, see how to do this in the article “How to share mobile Internet with other phones and computers”.

If Wi-Fi for some reason does not suit you, then you can distribute the Internet via Bluetooth. Scenario example: An Internet donor phone is connected via Wi-Fi to an Access Point. You need to connect a second phone to the Internet, but you can't or don't want to do it over Wi-Fi. In this case, as a temporary connection, you can distribute the Internet via Bluetooth.

How to share the Internet via Bluetooth

Start by pairing phones via Bluetooth.

To do this, turn on Bluetooth on both phones and click the “Search” button.

To go to the Bluetooth settings, press and hold the Bluetooth icon that you previously used to turn on Bluetooth.

In the Available devices list, select the phone you want to pair with.

On both phones, tap “Pair”.

After that, on the phone that you want to connect via Bluetooth to the Internet, click the gear icon opposite the donor phone that will distribute the Internet.

In the window that opens, activate “Internet access”.

Then return to the donar phone – on the screen of which a request will appear to allow the Bluetooth tethering mode, click the “Allow” button.

If you get confused as to which phone has a Bluetooth tethering enabled and which one is using the Internet via Bluetooth, then the Bluetooth connection setting for the donor phone will say “Internet connection sharing”.

And on a phone that uses the Internet via Bluetooth, it will say “Internet access”.

How to use an Android phone to access the Internet on a computer without Wi-Fi

In the article “How to share mobile Internet with other phones and computers”, we already talked about how to use a mobile phone as an Access Point, but what if the computer does not have a Wi-Fi adapter or drivers are not installed for it?

This article is devoted to the answer to this question – it tells how to connect a computer to the mobile Internet using a USB cable.

In fact, this method is even simpler than creating a mobile hotspot.

How to Use Android Phone as USB Tethering in Windows

As you can see in the screenshot, the computer does not have an Internet connection.

Start by connecting your phone to your computer with a USB cable.

Then go to the settings of your phone, this can be done by unrolling the curtain from top to bottom and clicking the gear icon.

Further, the name of the settings items may differ on different phone models, but the essence will be the same everywhere.

Go to the “Connections” section.

Find the item “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” there.

Turn on “USB tethering”.

Everything is ready – now your computer is online and can connect to the Internet. You can install Wi-Fi drivers or perform other network actions that you need.

No additional configuration is required on the computer. Now the computer is connected to the network – the USB tethering connection has a wired connection icon.

What to do if the USB modem item is not active or missing

The USB modem item may be inactive in two cases:

  1. The phone is not connected to the computer with a USB cable.
  2. USB cable does not support data transfer

Try another USB cable – the one that came with the phone should support data transfer.

Things to remember when using a mobile phone for the Internet

  1. Please note that if the phone is not connected to Wi-Fi, then mobile data will be used – if you do not have an unlimited data plan, then this will cost you money.
  2. You can connect your phone to a Wi-Fi network and still use it as a USB modem. The result is that your computer is using Wi-Fi through your phone, and not mobile data.
  3. If, when you turn on the USB modem, there is still no Internet access on the computer, then check if other network connections are disabled: for example, via Wi-Fi or by wire, the computer can be connected to a router that does not have Internet (disabled for non-payment or damaged cable).
  4. If you disconnect the phone from the USB cable, and then connect it to the computer again, you will need to turn USB tethering on again in the phone each time
  5. While the mobile phone is operating as a USB modem, you cannot send and receive files from it

How to enable file transfer between computer and phone

When the USB modem is enabled, it is not possible to exchange files between the computer and the phone.

In order to make it possible to copy files, you can disconnect the phone from the computer, and then reconnect and, when asked for permission to transfer files, provide it.

Another option is to disable the USB modem and enable data transfer (or only charging) in the phone settings without disconnecting it from the USB cable. To do this, open the curtain and expand the notification “USB tethering turned on”.

Click to configure the USB connection to the corresponding label.

Instead of “USB tethering” select “USB tethering” or “Charging phone only”.

How to share mobile Internet with other phones and computers

This guide will tell you how to turn on Wi-Fi on your phone for other devices so that they can use the Internet. This can come in handy, for example, when you want your friends to be able to connect to the Internet if they have a bad signal or use up their data limit. Another example: you can connect your laptop or computer to your phone via Wi-Fi and access the Internet through your phone, even if you are away from home or your “wired” ISP is out of service.

The specific names of menu items may vary depending on phone models – it's not a problem, the main thing is to understand the essence, then you can set up a mobile hotspot on any phone.

How mobile hotspot works

Your phone can use the Internet from:

  • mobile operator
  • WiFi hotspots

Typically, wireless routers act as Wi-Fi access points for phones and computers. And the Internet source for routers is wired Internet service providers.

But mobile phones can also act as a Wi-Fi hotspot. At the same time, the source of the Internet on them will be a mobile Internet provider or Wi-Fi connection.

What is needed for the phone to work as a Wi-Fi router

All Android phones can act as a Wi-Fi router for other devices.

But it is also necessary that the phone can use the mobile Internet. Since the computer that you connect to the Internet can automatically download updates and consume too much Internet, it is advisable to buy a mobile traffic package in advance.

How to turn on Wi-Fi for other devices on your phone

To enable mobile hotspot, make sure you have mobile data turned on.

Note: modern phones can distribute mobile Internet or they can be connected to a Wi-Fi network and distribute Internet through a wireless Access Point at the same time. This can be useful if you do not know the Wi-Fi password or want to temporarily connect other users to the Internet without giving them the Wi-Fi password on the router.

Now go to the settings, this can be done by clicking the gear or the “Settings” icon among the applications.

The menu names may vary slightly, but most likely you need to go to the “Connections” item. Perhaps already in the main menu you will see the section “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering” – go to it.

Find “Mobile Hotspot and Tethering”.

You need to enable “Mobile Hotspot”, to do this, move the lever.

Depending on your phone model, you may need to disable Wi-Fi connection to enable mobile hotspot.

What is the Wi-Fi password for mobile hotspot

To see or set a password instead of enabling Mobile Hotspot, click on it to go to the mobile hotspot settings.

Here click on “Configure” to change Mobile Hotspot settings.

Here you can change Network name

and Password.

It is recommended that you use a password to prevent strangers from connecting to your phone's Wi-Fi. Connecting outsiders is bad for many reasons:

  • excessive consumption of mobile traffic
  • security of other devices connected to the phone
  • faster battery drain
  • an outsider can use your Internet connection for crimes or illegal activities (and you will have problems)

How to check who is connected to a mobile hotspot

In the “Mobile Hotspot” menu you will see Connected devices.

Why does my battery drain so fast when using mobile hotspot

When your phone shares Wi-Fi with other devices, it does not go into sleep mode, but constantly uses the Wi-Fi module and modem for mobile Internet. Working as a router also creates a load on the processor.

There is nothing you can do about the fact that the phone runs out of power faster, but you can leave it on charge while the mobile hotspot is running.

How to keep track of your mobile data usage

You can track your internet usage in the app or website of your mobile operator, or on your phone itself.

Find “Data Usage” in the menu.

Here you can:

  • see how much data was downloaded in total (via mobile networks and Wi-Fi)
  • view data consumption in certain periods
  • check which apps are consuming the most data
  • set warnings and limits when a certain threshold is reached

See also:

How to remove Mobile broadband and Bluetooth connection in NetworkManager

NetworkManager is a universal application for managing all kinds of network connections:

  • wired connections
  • wireless connections
  • USB modem
  • Bluetooth modem

Wired and wireless connections can be deleted in the Network Settings and Network Connections interfaces.

With Mobile broadband connections (using a mobile phone as a USB modem) and Bluetooth connections, the situation is somewhat different.

In Network Settings, when you select a Bluetooth connection, the button (minus sign, “-”) to delete this connection is inactive.

In Network Connections, it seems like you can delete Bluetooth connections – the delete button is active, but actually they are not deleted.

You can look for these connections in the /etc/NetworkManager/conf.d and /usr/lib/NetworkManager/conf.d direcotories – they are actually present in them, you can even delete the files of these connections. But this does not solve the problem – these files reappear.

See Also: Where NetworkManager stores settings

The crux of the problem is that Bluetooth connections are controlled by another service, and NetworkManager only receives information from it about available connections, so you need to delete Bluetooth connections using utilities responsible for Bluetooth.

In the command line, an unnecessary connection can be removed using the following algorithm.

1. The following command displays a list of available Bluetooth connections:

bluetoothctl devices

2. To remove an unnecessary connection, enter a command of the form:

bluetoothctl remove MAC_ADDRESS

For instance:

bluetoothctl remove C8:38:70:AD:BB:47

As you can see, the specified Bluetooth connection has disappeared from the list of network connections in NetworkManager.

You can also see the MAC_ADDRESS in Network Settings by going to the Bluetooth tab.

To copy the MAC_ADDRESS, click the gear icon.

The MAC_ADDRESS value can also be viewed in the Blueman applet.

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