Installing A SIM Into A Sierra Wireless GX400W Or GX440W With WiFi

Many of our clients who order Sierra Wireless AirLink GX400 or GX440 cellular gateways with WiFi (like these models 1101531,  1101691 ) find out the hard way that the SIM is very difficult to install. The SIM does not come pre-installed, and the process is not quick to perform. Do it incorrectly or incompetently and risk doing damage to the device itself.  I highly recommend opting to have the SIM installed at the time of sale. Companies like USAT Corp. do that service for a very nominal fee and it comes as a standard part of the device provisioning (DevProv+) professional services. However, if you find yourself in the situation of having to install the SIM yourself, know this key information:

The SIM slot is located on the front left (as you are looking at the side with the lights and the reset button) behind the plastic cover. To access the SIM slot on the device you must remove the plastic cover with a 2mm or 5/64” hexagon Allen wrench.

Step 1: Unplug your GX400/440 from power source.

Step 2: Remove the four hex screws on top of the unit (used to secure the black cover) using a 2mm or 5/64” size Allen (hex) wrench. Place screws in a safe spot, these screws will be used again.

Step 3: Remove the nut and washer from the front facing SMA connector using a 5/16 or 8mm socket torque wrench to a torque spec of 8in-lbs. Place nut and washer in a safe spot, these will be used again.

Step 4: Slide the top black cover off of the device.

Step 5: Install the SIM card with the gold contacts facing down and the cut-out facing to the right.

Re-Installing The Cover Plate

The cover has a tab to mechanically secure the SIM in place during extreme vibration. When replacing the cover:

Step 1: Install the black cover by lining up the SMA antenna connector with the hole in the cover, tilt the rear of the cover slightly to make sure the front bottom of the cover seats in the front ridge, and then push the top of the cover down.

Step 2: Re-install the 4 hex screws on top of the unit.

Step 3: Place the lock washer onto the SMA antenna connector and push to the face of the cover.

Step 4: Install then tighten nut with a 5/16 or 8mm socket torque wrench to a torque spec of 8in-lbs.

Digi's Transport Goes Mainstream With the Transport WR21

When Digi acquired Sarian Systems in 2008, they bought a powerful software package with many robust security features for moving money wirelessly. With the advent of the WR21, we get a glimpse of the future of the Digi product line as they hypridize the features of the legacy ConnectWAN models with the Transport line.

In summary, the Transport WR21 has two flavors. Basically, flavor one is a “WR21 LITE,” with standard software, at a very low price-point, and does not contain all of the sophisticated features as the rest of the Transport line but will fit the bill for many of the same applications as the ConnectWAN. The second flavor, termed ” the enterprise software version” is packing the full feature set of the Transport line including advanced routing, VPN, and statefull firewall. View a specification sheet here.

Since the SKUs of the Transport line can be complex, as a public service we are listing the part numbers and descriptions below.

-WR21-B11B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 1XRTT Sprint, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-B21B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 1XRTT Verizon, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-C51B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 EVDO IUSACELL, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-E11B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 Edge, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U61B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 HSPA+ ATT, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U71B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 HSPA+ Worldwide (850/900/1900/2100MHz), 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U81B-DB1-SU TransPort WR21 EVDO/HSPA+ Gobi 3000 (850/900/1900/2100MHz), 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, US Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-C01B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 EVDO 450MHz, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
WR21-C31B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 EVDO 450MHz RUIM, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-C41B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 EVDO 450MHz Norway, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-C61B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 EVDO 450MHz Sweden, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
WR21-E11B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 Edge, 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U41B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 HSPA+ EU/APAC (900/2100MHz), 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U71B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 HSPA+ Worldwide (850/900/1900/2100MHz), 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas
-WR21-U81B-DB1-SW TransPort WR21 EVDO/HSPA+ Gobi 3000 (850/900/1900/2100MHz), 1 Ethernet, RS232, Standard Software Package, International Power Supply and Antennas

A recent Digi newsletter contained an excellent article about utilizing the Digi Transport line’s Digi Surelink feature.
Digi SureLink has several mechanisms to help maintain a persistent wireless connection and take action if the connection is lost.
First, there are mechanisms to test that traffic is actually passing. On the Digi TransPort® this can be done actively by generating traffic from the device or passively by testing outbound TCP traffic and checking that responses (ACKs) are received.
If the test fails, then corrective action is taken. These configurable items are:
1. Drop the current PPP session and attempt to re-establish it. (If the Digi TransPort senses the PPP session is gone, it will automatically attempt to re-establish it even without Digi SureLink.)
2. If the PPP session does not re-establish, then reset the embedded module and try again.
3. If that still fails, then reboot the Digi Transport device itself.
Since several different functions come into play, the Digi TransPort engineers came up with an easy-to-follow SureLink Wizard in the built-in WebUI. The user selects the wizard, reads the on-screen info and prompts, and builds the SureLink setup without even needing to crack the User Manual.

Sierra Wireless Enters Fray With 3G Router

In times gone by, each smart modem manufacturer had a specialization that allowed for easy compartmentalization in WWANwarriors’ heads. Now, however, the lines are blurring as manfacturers attempt to round out their product lines and pick up market-share  by broadening their linecards.  For instance, Sierra Wireless, acquired Junxion in 2008 in order to get into the 3G router space. Now, the child of this union, Helix, has been announced. This has to annoy Digi International, whose much less creatively named line of ConnectPort WAN products are the leader in wireless routing. Healthy competition breeds innovation, so look out for more features and lower prices in 2009.