Vianet Amplicon GPRS Trial SIM Guide

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                                                   Vianet Amplicon
                                                 GPRS Trial SIM Guide               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                                                                    Vianet Amplicon
                                                                  GPRS Trial SIM Guide

                                                              Contact Amplicon on 01273 570 220

                 Thank you for choosing the Vianet GPRS SIM from Amplicon. This guide will explain many of the things you need to
                 know about the service provided and how to make best use of it. We have tried to make the GPRS service simple and
                 easy to understand, but if you have any questions please contact the Amplicon Help desk who will be happy to talk
                 though any areas of difficulty.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                 What’s Included?
                 As well as the SIM, your package is provided with a credit of 10MB data usage and 12 months subscription. You can buy
                 more data and extended subscription packs by contacting Amplicon.

                 Normally it is impossible for a device on the Internet to initiate contact with a GPRS device: all IP connections have to be
                 initiated by the device rather than a server. This limitation is overcome in this package by combining three special
                 features: The IP address of the SIM is fixed; a DNS scheme provides a look up for the IP address of the device and a
                 VPN is used to put the calling server on the same private network as the remote device.

                 Your device has Internet access and is therefore able to communicate with any Internet-facing services you may require.
                 Alternatively, you can order a VPN upgrade which provides a secure path to the server from remote devices without
                 requiring a public IP address – more information is given in the VPN section of this guide.

                 You can use your SIM in any GPRS/3G modem or router and you will get the best data speed available. You do not need
                 a special 3G SIM to take advantage of 3G data speeds. Please note that a 3G connection could use up your 10MB data
                 allowance very quickly.

                 Mobile devices can contact each other across the Vianet network so for some applications it is not necessary to have a
                 centralised server, for example a video camera connected via GPRS can be viewed from a laptop with a GPRS modem so
                 long as they both use Vianet SIMs.

                 Because this is an M2M SIM some services you might expect from a general purpose SIM are not available. They are:
                 outgoing text messages, voice, circuit switched data, roaming and you may only use the APN. You can however
                 receive text messages in order to do over the air provisioning, etc. Amplicon and Vianet can provide customised
                 packages including these extra services, ask Amplicon for more information if that would help you.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                 What’s the number of my SIM?
                 The number of your SIM is on the package label, and may be on the delivery note and invoice from Amplicon. On many
                 modems you can issue the command AT+CNUM=?

                 What’s the DNS name for?
                 When connected to Vianet every device has a DNS name associated with it. You could also call this a Host Name or URL.
                 The DNS name is in the format for example Even though the SIM in your
                 pack has a fixed IP address associated with it, you should use the DNS name whenever you can in applications. It is
                 more robust and future proof and allows greater scalability when you go to volume production.

                 What’s the VPN about?
                 GPRS devices are given IP addresses in a private IP address range and access to the Internet is disguised by Network
                 Address Translation which uses one public IP address for all the private devices. For a server to contact a remote device
                 it needs to join the private network which is done by use of the VPN. The VPN looks within Windows like another
                 network adaptor.

                 VPN clients are available for Windows, Mac and Linux. Some people prefer to make modem-to-modem connections than
                 to use the VPN, this is particularly applicable to PDA style devices.

                 To keep costs in the development phase low, the VPN you’re supplied with by default is shared with other Amplicon
                 customers. This may be acceptable for development but you can order your own VPN for production or extra privacy at
                 any time. Having your own VPN not only gives you more privacy on the route to remote device, it also fixes an IP
                 address at the server end so data sent in by remote devices is secure and a public IP address for the server is not

                 With your own VPN we also provide an asset register. In the asset register you can assign information to each SIM to
                 record its location and you can view its history of connections and data use. You can also ping devices from within the
                 network, which can be a useful diagnostic tool.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                 How do I tell if my device has connected when I don’t have physical access to
                 If you join the VPN or connect with another Vianet SIM, you can try and ping the remote device using its DNS name e.g.
                 ‘ping’. If the device has been inactive for a while the first ping may be lost due to the wake
                 up time, a second ping should respond if the device is alive.

                 If ping reports it could not find the host name then check the number and that the VPN is up. If both of these are correct
                 then there may be a configuration problem; ask Amplicon to investigate.

                 If the DNS name resolves to the device is not on line at the moment, if it is configured to recover from every
                 conceivable fault then try again later.

                 If ping reports all timeouts but with a valid IP address then the device is registered on line but may have lost power or be
                 suffering weak signal strength. It’s possible, but rare for network congestion in the cell to prevent messages getting
                 through. If a valid IP address is returned by ping then you can ask Amplicon’s support desk to ping the device from
                 within the network, but if you have got that far then doing so is rarely of value except for diagnosing VPN or Firewall

                 What is the IP address of my SIM?
                 Join the VPN or connect with another Vianet SIM, then try and ping the remote device using its DNS name e.g. ‘ping
       ’. Ping will return the IP address if the SIM is connected at the time, or if its not.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                 Can I check coverage before going on site?
                 Most Vianet SIMs are with the T-mobile network, you can check coverage at
                 What about Public IP addresses?
                 Public IP addresses are not available with this package. You can overcome this in your product design in a number of
                 ways. You could design your solution to use a central server to broker messages between a public IP address and remote
                 devices. You can contact remote devices from, for example, a handheld using a Vianet SIM, or you could set up a Linux
                 box with VPN which port forwards public IP requests to remote devices.

                 Beware, if you make a GPRS device accessible from the public Internet then you will pay for data used every time a
                 hacker does a port scan on the public address.

                 Good advice
                 Be careful if you are using a Windows device – make sure all the automatic updates are turned off or they will consume
                 large amounts of data which you will pay for.

                 Take care in your design that the device will recover from temporary loss of network. It is also a good idea to enable the
                 device to be reset by text message to overcome any unexpected system halts.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                 Getting help
                 Amplicon are your first line of support if you need advice or get into difficulties. They can recommend hardware from a
                 wide range of modems and routers that Amplicon can support alongside the over-the-air service. Contact Amplicon
                 Sales on 01273 570 220
                 Support on 0906 293 0293 (25p/min) or go to for free on-line support

                 How do I get top-ups and tell me about options and extras?
                 When top-ups are ordered you must specify which SIM they should be applied to.

                 The following are available from Amplicon:

                 Stock Number          Description
                 96085063              This package with 12 months subscription and 10MB data
                 96085066              12 months further subscription and 10MB data
                 96085065              40MB data
                 96085064              Upgrade to Private VPN and Device Register: see the VPN section above for details.
                                       Please supply a list of the SIMs to be associated with these.

                 Contact Amplicon Sales on 01273 570 220

                 SMS, CSD, voice, roaming, and alternate networks are available from Vianet on custom contracts. If you need any of
                 these, please ask Amplicon for an introduction. As your solution grows it is likely you will need facilities beyond the
                 starter pack nature of this package. Amplicon and Vianet can continue to support you with more specialised services as
                 and when you need them.               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

                                Contact Amplicon on 01273 570 220
                                            332800               IT and Instrumentation for industry

Sales: +44 (0) 1273 570 220 Website: Email:

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