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Using the iPhone for Out-of-Band access

January 21, 2011

I frequently use my iPad to console onto routers as per my earlier post. But there are so much more functionality here. The iPhone can be used as a Out-of-Band device.

Why? Because it occasionally happens that a router has no device near it that can provide console access. And if you doing risky changes, this beats having to sit next to the device while doing the changes.

Requirements:

  1. A serial connector cable  (30-pin Apple to male DB9 pin RS-232).
  2. A rollover cable.
  3. A jailbroken iPhone.
  4. Terminal application.
  5. Software that supports serial communication.
  6. Inbound connectivity to iPhone Sim.

Steps 1-5 is the same as my previous post. Only difference is with step-4. The app iSSH is not needed here as the SSH connection will not be made locally from the device. So once SSH is loaded via Cydia move along to Step-5.

The last step required is having inbound access to the cellular data IP on your iPhone. This varies between cellular providers. Some providers block inbound access, others allow it by default. If your cellular provider is blocking inbound access, you will have to request them to allow it for you SIM.

All that is left to do, is plugging your phone into the distant router, (preferably locked in the cabinet, to prevent it from being stolen). From you desk SSH to the iPhone and use Minicom to reverse console into your router.

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