Using USB Tethering on FreeBSD with Android

Last modified: 2020/03/06


The Intel Centrino Advanced-N 6205 WiFi adapter can be found also in the Lenovo X230 series. The laptop is well supported by FreeBSD, and the iwn(4) driver covers the WiFi chipset, so connecting to a WiFi network should be no problem. Unfortunately, the performance is rather poor, especially while using the 5 GHz channels. It may help to disable IEEE 802.11n with:

# ifconfig wlan0 -ht

Otherwise, a Android-based mobile phone can be used to connect to a WiFi network by USB tethering instead. Using an Android device requires to load the urndis(4) driver at first:

# kldload if_urndis

Add the kernel module to /etc/rc.conf in order to load the driver while booting:


Connect the Android phone to the Laptop using a USB cable. Make sure that WiFi and USB tethering are enabled on the phone. A new network interface ue0 will be created once the device is connected:

# ifconfig
ue0: flags=8843<UP,BROADCAST,RUNNING,SIMPLEX,MULTICAST> metric 0 mtu 1500
        ether XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX
        hwaddr XX:XX:XX:XX:XX:XX

Enable the interface and obtain an IP address by DHCP:

# ifconfig ue0 up
# dhclient ue0

The laptop should be connected to the WiFi now.

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