Devices can't access Internet
June 2, 2009 3:00 PM   Subscribe

My Tivo and 360 can no longer access the internet because my provider has set up a Terms of Service page that you have to click on through a web browser before it will let you access the internet. What can I do to get internet for my browser less devices?

My apartment complex offers free internet access. However, when you connect to it, it redirects you to a page saying "You must agree to our terms of service. Click here to agree." Once you do that it sends you to and then redirects you to Yahoo. Obviously this is no problem for my computer but my Tivo has stopped working since they began this change. I have a series 2 tivo I think (got it last year).
posted by clockworkjoe to Computers & Internet (14 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
You can set up a linux box as a router or a proxy to the wireless internet- use the linux box's browser to agree to the TOS, and then route traffic from a private subnet to the wifi, either using your linux box as a NAT'ing router, or by installing a proxy server that sends your local traffic out over the wires.

This will take some research and fiddling around time, but isn't too hard to do with a little googling- but it may just be easier to pony up $30 a month for the local ISP's services.
posted by jenkinsEar at 3:05 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: The terms of services specifically prohibit routers.
posted by clockworkjoe at 3:08 PM on June 2, 2009

How often must one repeat this process? Is it just a one time thing, and then the device works afterwards? Is this for wired internet access or for wireless?

If it's a one-time thing for wired access, it might be enough to spoof your computer's mac address to be that of the tivo/xbox, accept the agreement, and then change your mac back to the original. In the more-likely event that you're forced to accept this agreement every time your IP changes (essentially every time you turn the device on), then you might be able to set up some device to spoof the tivo IP with your computer and accept the agreement that way. It might be possible to work this into a script to make it less problematic.
posted by kiltedtaco at 3:19 PM on June 2, 2009

Response by poster: I have to agree to it every time I turn the computer on and even then I've had to agree after being online for 6 hours or so. I can't really figure out its rhyme or reason.
posted by clockworkjoe at 3:27 PM on June 2, 2009

You can get AT&T dry loop DSL for $20 a month. Get that for your devices, use the free access for everything else.

You could probably get away with jenkin's idea of setting up a linux box as a router, but it's not worth moving over if you landlord has a hissy fit.
posted by Oktober at 3:30 PM on June 2, 2009 [1 favorite]

For what it's worth, they don't define "router." Can you use a Residential gateway and just not use the DSL/Cable modem feature?

What are the possibilities of switching ISP?

As a last resort, you may just want to bring this to the attention of the management.
posted by DonSlice at 3:31 PM on June 2, 2009

The terms of services specifically prohibit routers.

FWIW, a proxy is not a router. And it would be pretty much impossible for them to detect anyway.
posted by jenkinsEar at 3:47 PM on June 2, 2009

The internet access system probably uses MAC addresses for tracking.

1. Find out what the MAC address is of the Tivo's Ethernet adapter (should be labeled, also can be found in menus).

2. Disconnect the Tivo from the network.

3. Find a computer that will let you change ("spoof") the MAC address (this could be the hard part, hopefully someone else here can help you with that) and set it to the Tivo's determined in step 1 above.

4. Do the browser thingy.

5. Change the computer back to its original MAC address and verify that it can browse again (or just disconnect it from the network).

6. Reconnect the Tivo. Should work now.
posted by intermod at 9:11 PM on June 2, 2009

Typically you can just call them and give them the mac addresses of the devices. I also doubt theyll detect a router if youre so inclined. Or spoof as intermod describes.
posted by damn dirty ape at 9:47 PM on June 2, 2009

I use SMAC for mac spoofing, super easy.
posted by syntheticfaith at 5:43 AM on June 3, 2009

I 2nd talking to the management. They may not be aware that some devices like TiVo don't work like regular computers.
posted by Gungho at 5:46 AM on June 3, 2009

You could alert your ISP that unless they address this serious issue, you will switch to another provider.

posted by General Tonic at 7:12 AM on June 3, 2009

I have to agree to it every time I turn the computer on and even then I've had to agree after being online for 6 hours or so. I can't really figure out its rhyme or reason.

That's the most idiotic thing I've ever heard. You should talk to your apartment manager and tell them their shit is misconfigured, because there's no way they could seriously intend that everyone re-agree to the TOS every six hours.
posted by delmoi at 8:24 AM on June 3, 2009

Response by poster: I had my landlord add the tivo to the firewall's DMZ.
posted by clockworkjoe at 3:35 PM on July 3, 2009

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