Tethering iPhone on Ubuntu 11.04


  • Ubuntu 11.04
  • iPhone 3GS with iOS 4.3

The following steps can be used to enable tethering between a platform running Ubuntu 11.04 and an iPhone. At a high level:

  1. Enable tethering on iPhone
  2. Install repository from Paul McEnery
  3. Install necessary packages
  4. Connect

Enable Tethering on iPhone

The use of iPhone tethering might be governed by your wireless plan. If data tethering is allowed, one should be able to turn it on using the “Settings” application.
In the “Settings” application, choose “Personal Hotspot” from the menu, and enable it by pushing the switch to “on”.

If one can not accomplish this step, the remainder steps from this article will be in vain.

Install repository from Paul McEnery

Adding package “python-software-properties” provides the command “add-apt-repository”. This command is then used to make it really easy to add a repository from PPA.

Install necessary packages

Once the repository is installed, installing the packages is straight forward:

During the configuration of those packages, a kernel module must be built. In the case that the kernel headers are not installed, the following error message is printed on the screen:

Module build for the currently running kernel was skipped since the kernel source for this kernel does not seem to be installed.

In this case, the proper headers must be installed. To find out which headers are required:

Then, install the headers using the following command. Ensure that you replace the proper version according to what was returned previously.

When this command completes, the iPhone module should be built. If not, then the system can be prompted to rebuild the kernel module:


Connect the iPhone to the platform using a USB cable. When the USB device is detected, an Ethernet should be established automatically.

3 Replies to “Tethering iPhone on Ubuntu 11.04”

  1. May require a restart of the autoeth and/or firefox. Just throwing it out there for those that may not immediately think of these things.

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