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Old 06-08-2018, 08:26 PM   #1
asiago
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Not able to connect to an access point that isn't routed to the internet?

What I've done is set up a web server + access point on a spare raspberry pi zero w, in the hopes that I could connect my kobo to it occasionally using the beta browser and more easily/lazily grab books from the rpi. I hadn't set it up to connect through to the internet, it's just a standalone intranet. It works great with other devices (a tablet, this chromebook, and a laptop) but my Kobo just won't connect to it.

I've fiddled around with all the settings, and just can't get it to work. My theory is that the Kobo doesn't consider itself 'connected' unless it can phone home (like, do a firmware version check, or something), and thus disconnects wifi entirely.

I did set up some logging on the server, and it appears to assign an IP address, but then de-auths the connection shortly after, lending weight to my theory.

I briefly chatted with Kobo's customer service and they confirmed that online access is required of a wifi connection, but didn't know much else. Anyone know if there's a flag in the config file to change this behavior, or am I out of luck?
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Old 06-08-2018, 09:11 PM   #2
davidfor
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That is correct. When you connect the device to WiFi, it verifies it can access a page on the internet. If it doesn't get a response, it disconnects. The device also uses the response to work out if you are using a hotspot that needs you to login.

I can't remember if there is a patch to workaround this or not. And the URL used has changed in recent firmware, so any patch might need to be changed.
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Old 06-09-2018, 07:26 PM   #3
asiago
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Quote:
Originally Posted by davidfor View Post
That is correct. When you connect the device to WiFi, it verifies it can access a page on the internet. If it doesn't get a response, it disconnects. The device also uses the response to work out if you are using a hotspot that needs you to login.

I can't remember if there is a patch to workaround this or not. And the URL used has changed in recent firmware, so any patch might need to be changed.
Awesome, thanks for the reply. Would you happen to know the URL of the page it tries to connect to? I found in some old threads that it used to connect to an apple.com test page, and then something to www.msftncsi.com, but that's apparently not current. In my logs, I can see connection attempts to www.kobo.com, but I'm not expert enough to figure out how to log the entire/exact URL.

I also grepped through the firmware code, but found nothing. It's possibly in some part of the code that's not open.
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Old 06-09-2018, 08:33 PM   #4
asiago
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Update: The new file it's trying to access appears to be http://www.kobo.com/buildinfo.xml

I was able to set up a virtual host in my raspberry pi webserver to fake www.kobo.com and copied that file there, and make progress; now the kobo, when attempting to connect, will successfully connect, but then throws up the "this appears to be a public hotspot, would you like to continue" dialog. The dialog simply displays the text from that xml file. I suspect I may need to create further fakery.

I'm unsure what to do next, but hey, it's progress.
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Old 06-09-2018, 10:39 PM   #5
davidfor
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That sounds like it should work.

The firmware seems to be looking for the following in the file:

Code:
<\?xml[^>]*>[^<]*<BuildInfo
Unless there is something in the headers that is needed, then I would think returning the correct file is all that is needed.
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Old 06-10-2018, 12:48 AM   #6
asiago
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Working!

So, I got it working! Even though I used wget to grab the xml file from kobo's website, somehow the initial < was missing. I might have never noticed this. In any case, I fixed the xml tag and it works - kobo connects to it, and assumes everything is dandy.

Thanks for the input, davidfor!
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