Best of Technical Support

Our experts answer your technical questions.
Emulating VT100

When I telnet from a Linux PC to a Linux server and edit a file on the remote PC using vi, I get a screen full of ANSI X3 cursor control characters. My PC does not seem to emulate the VT100. I have set TERM=vt100 in my .bash_profile and used EXINIT='term=vt100' and even used command mode in vi (:term=vt100), all to no avail. What am I doing wrong? Thanks in advance. —Dominic Wild,

Seems you need to adjust the TERM variable to the correct values. You are doing the right thing except you may not be using a vt100 emulation. Try using “ansi”. Bear in mind that you may have to set the correct emulation mode on both the machine you are logging into and the machine you are logging from. That is, every emulation on your setup must be the same in order for it to work. To check which emulations are in use on the machine you telnet from, check the environment variables with the “env” command. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué,

The terminal settings ($TERM, etc.) have no effect on the terminal itself. They only tell applications what the current terminal is, i.e., what escape sequences it generates and accepts. Therefore, if you force $TERM to vt100, applications will send vt100 commands to a TTY that is not a vt100. I suspect your terminal name should be “linux”, “xterm”, “rxvt” or whatever is appropriate for the terminal emulator you are using. Since $TERM is propagated across Telnet sessions, you cannot change only its value. —Alessandro Rubini,

Cannot Load Tulip Driver

I have a SMC 8432T Ethernet adapter. All the info I've gathered is that it's a DEC 21041 chip, and the driver is tulip.o. Problem is that KDE won't load the tulip driver, only 24x5. But my biggest frustration is that I can't find a tutorial for manual setup anywhere. —Al Smolkin,

You have to load the tulip driver from the actual Linux boot process, not from KDE or any other GUI. My machine also has a tulip-based card, and I handle it like this in my Red Hat 6.1 system. In file /etc/conf.modules, there is a line:

alias eth0 tulip

I compiled the module tulip.c into tulip.o and placed it in /lib/modules/2.2.16-3/net/tulip.o, where it gets loaded at boot time. Once loaded, you can run level 5; that is, you may turn on any graphic environment you desire. To manually load the module (after it has been compiled), try the command:

insmod tulip
Then you can cat the file /proc/modules to check if the tulip module has been loaded into your system. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué,

Make sure the 21041 is really what you have; it might actually be a 21040, in which case the IRQ and port won't always be found automatically. You can tell this by looking at the large black chip on the card, it will have this number stamped on it. To be quite honest, old SMC Ethernet cards can be a pain; I've used them for years, and I have to do something different for each one. You can get your card to work, but if you're frustrated, why not try the Etherpower II? It will be recognized instantly, and they're pretty cheap these days. —Chad Robinson,

Configuring Sendmail and POP3

Please help me out in setting up sendmail to handle POP mail for my internal network. The network has one Linux server,, which has sendmail and DNS. DNS is configured and I am able to send and receive mail to users on the Linux machine, but I am not able to send and receive mail through Outlook Express in Windows 9x. —Dasi Satish,

To enable POP3, you have to uncomment the pop3 entry on the file /etc/inetd.conf. After that, you have to reinitialize the inetd process using the command:

/etc/rc.d/init.d/inet restart

Then, configure the Outlook client to use for the POP server (incoming mail server). You need to have usernames and passwords configured on the Linux server for POP to work correctly. Also, sendmail must be running on your Linux server to be able to provide SMTP service (outgoing mail) to your Outlook clients. Therefore, set up the SMTP server to use the same machine. You may need to set /etc/mail/access with lines such as:

aaa.bbb.ccc.ddd    RELAY
where aaa.bbb.ccc.ddd are the IP addresses of the PCs on your LAN. This allows them to use the mail facilities of the Linux box without getting “relaying denied” messages. Erase the /etc/mail/access.db file, restart sendmail with:
/etc/rc.d/init.d/sendmail restart
and you should be sending and receiving mail through your Linux box to the Outlook clients. —Felipe E. Barousse Boué,

Sendmail is not a POP server. POP is a pull technology that clients who are not always connected use to get their mail. SMTP (Sendmail's bailiwick) is a push technology that expects the remote system to be connected at all times. You need a POP dæmon. There are several available on the Internet, and most likely, one was installed on your system by default. —Chad Robinson,