04-17-2010 02:53:14 PM
** This will probably work on other cards too, but I can't confirm that **
After a week of searching and ripping what's left of my hair out, I finally broke down and called AT&T tech support. Got two different stories from them. Luckily the SECOND one was the true scoop and I'm all fixed up now. (Also, sorry about being such an impatient dork on the phone)
Looks like (in my case at least) there's something in AT&T Communication Manager software that our VPN doesn't like. I asked the IT guys and was told "It's nothing on our end, must be you". Something is being blocked on the VPN side, but nobody seems to know/care what. So here's a way around that, or at least a way to rule out an A.C.M. issue.
1) Plug in your USBConnect Lightning card.
2) Open up device manager, drill down to the modem section and find the "Sierra Wireless HSPA Modem"
3) Right click on it and hit "Properties" then go to the "Advanced" tab.
4) In the "Extra initialization commands" box, enter (EXACTLY) the following: AT+CGDCONT=1,"IP","isp.cingular"
5) Click "OK" and close out device manager.
You'll need to create a new "Dial-up Connection" to connect to the internet. (Google this for your OS version, if you don't know how)
* Leave the username and password blank.
* For the phone number, use: *99***1#
* Set it up to use the Sierra Wireless HSPA Modem for conenction.
* Name it whatever you want and save it.
Now with your modem card connected, double click the DUN connection you just created and connect to the internet.
Now verify that you have connectivity by surfing to a website or by pinging a site.
Then fire up your VPN client, connect to it and then check and see if you still have connection. Ping a machine on your private network or VNC or Remote Desktop to it and verify connectivity.
You should be up and running!
Hope this helps someone. Lord knows I've been Googling my fingers to the bone for days now and haven't seen this, so I felt obligated to post it.
Good luck....we're all counting on you!
06-10-2010 10:54:52 AM
This article was such a help! Thank you so much! We use Windows 7 64-bit in our company and connect back using the Shrew Soft VPN Client and the AT&T Connection Manager never allowed it to work at all. Your article needs minor tweaking to work with Windows 7, but overall any IT guy worth his weight can figure it out in a minute or so. Thanks again!
I use the USBConnect Lightning too. I always have liked Sierra Wireless devices.
06-10-2010 06:33:06 PM
Glad it all worked for you. Not sure what needs tweaking, since I did this on a Windows 7 machine here. Maybe there's a difference in the 32bit and 64?
Anyway, glad to see that you're all up and running.
06-30-2010 01:50:02 PM
07-02-2010 06:47:41 AM
If you guys don't want to go down this road for windows 7 you can do the following:
First download the Sierra Wireless watcher for your device at:
Then go to the patch download at:
Load this and viola! It seems there is and NDIS driver problem between windows 7 and the wireless software. Worked great for me to get the Cisco VPN working on Windows 7 64 bit.
07-10-2010 07:40:47 AM
I also run Windows 7 and just uninstalled the ATT Connection Manager, downloaded the Sierra Wireless aircard watcher and magic happened with relative ease. Thanks.
08-08-2010 07:02:37 AM
Hear is some background information about why this problem exists and why this fix will work:
08-15-2010 11:28:41 AM
Another way to do this is to install the "NDIS" drivers for the Sierra card. Here is the link for the KB article that explains this more:
There is a link for the Sierra driver installation package that supports many of the Sierra Aircards, please read carefully to be sure this solution will work for your specific environment.
08-18-2010 08:39:52 PM
I tried both the first solution (create a new dial-up) and the NDIS solution - both worked for me on the Sierra Wireless HSPA USB device on Windows 7 32-bit. The advantage of the NDIS approach, however, is that it lets me use the latest ATT Communicator and allows me to keep track of my 3G usage. Haven't tried the Sierra Watcher - does it also keep track of your monthly usage?
Thanks to all for these solutions - spent hours loading and reloading communicator and Cisco VPN to no avail.
08-18-2010 11:19:56 PM
These network specific features are typically implemented using the cellular control channel defined in the GSM specification and involve a proprietary flow that uses this channel to interface with the services that provide this info. The Watcher is a generic connection manager which is not concerned with the implementation of any provider specific and is more concerned with exposing all the functionality of the cellular hardware.
04-30-2011 05:00:05 PM
Thank you! I'd been using that AT&T Connection Manager for years now with no problem... then this week my VPN (not even Cisco) stopped connecting. This worked like a charm!
06-28-2011 03:55:02 PM
Has anyone done this with an LG Adrenaline? I suspect maybe the modem initialization string would be different, I tried this one and I could not dial out.
06-28-2011 06:10:54 PM
Well, I spoke too soon. Spent some time on the phone with tech support and they walked me through the exact same solution as detailed above. The first time setting it up, it would not connect. I had to remove the Adrenaline, reboot, and then it started dialing fine, using the init string and dialing string. Good news. VPN is working fine now.
09-18-2011 08:58:56 AM
Thank you so much! I have been looking for the answer for this for two months! Every post seems to be about Win7 and my company is still far behind using WinXP. Went a month without needing the device and when I needed it, had this problem and started searching for the results. Must have missed this post during the last visit. Anyway, thanks again!