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Tethering the Kindle 3

September 25, 2010

Ever wanted to use the free world-wide 3G account on your Kindle for browsing on your laptop? Now you can. Here’s my quick howto for tethering a Mac OS X laptop to the Kindle 3 in 10 easy steps:

  1. Jailbreak the Kindle (or google for kindle-jailbreak-0.3.N.zip)
  2. Install usbNetwork (kindle-usbnetwork-0.13.N.zip) and run “;debugOn” and “~usbNetwork” from the Home screen
  3. Plug the Kindle into the laptop with the USB cable and configure a manual IP address for the laptop on 192.168.2.1
  4. Open a terminal window and ssh root:fiona@192.168.2.2 or telnet 192.168.2.2 .. ssh doesn’t always work (does anyone know why?)
  5. Upload tcpdump-arm to the Kindle and move it to root home folder. Run “mntroot rw” just in case.
  6. Use “~/tcpdump-arm -nAi ppp0 -s0″ to identify amazon proxy x-fsn authentication key by browsing the web over 3g on the Kindle browser.
  7. Create an ssh tunnel for proxy between laptop and the Kindle proxy server (fints-g7g.amazon.com –> 72.21.206.113)
  8. If sshd (dropbear) decides to stop working for whatever reason, telnet into kindle, reverse ssh into your laptop from there and set up the link (ssh -R 8099:72.21.206.113:80 user@192.168.2.1). Run a ping 192.168.2.2 for connection keepalives.
  9. Use the Modify Headers Firefox extension on laptop to insert x-fsn key into every page.
  10. Configure laptop Firefox proxy to 127.0.0.1:8099. If you like, you can forward additional ports for SSL etc as separate SSH tunnels

It should now be possible to browse the net on the laptop through the kindle 3g connection and Amazon proxy servers. Not everything works (gmail anyone?), and it’s not as fast as the iPhone 3g service, but if you’re stuck in an airport in Europe or Asia with no internet, this might just be good enough, and (likely) free.

Thanks to Collin Mulliner and MobileRead Forums for helpful hints on setting this up. Please note that you are using Amazon proxy servers, and from the x-fsn key they do know who you are and (possibly) what you’re doing; there’s always a chance that Amazon will charge you for the data usage. Their current costs for delivering personal documents to the Kindle is $0.99/mb for international and $0.15/mb for domestic data; caveat emptor.

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37 Comments
  1. Tilly permalink

    Exactly how and where do I find the x-fsn authentication key? I ran “~/tcpdump-arm -nAi ppp0 -s0″ on the Kindle, but where’s the output?

    • Togger permalink

      I found mine just by searching the results for “x-fsn”

    • Captain O. permalink

      you need to run tcpdump from a console on your pc, after you’ve remotely logged into your kindle.

  2. Nice.. Thankyou very much..

  3. Oli95 permalink

    Links are offline, re-up pls ;)

  4. Ama permalink

    I could follow all your tutorial except that I don’t know exactly what you mean by creating a ssh tunnel between laptop and the Kindle proxy server.

    “7. Create an ssh tunnel for proxy between laptop and the Kindle proxy server (fints-g7g.amazon.com –> 72.21.206.113)?”

    Could you give me a hint of where to look for instructions on this step or perhaps even what exact commands I should run?

    Thanks a lot!

  5. ptr123 permalink

    It just wont let telnet nor ssh work.
    I dont know why
    what could I have made wrong?

  6. Bill permalink

    For the point 10. How could we forward additional ports for SSL etc as separate SSH tunnels. I use this mainly for checking emails when traveling. But most mail system require https access. Could u help us.

  7. Tony permalink

    thanks, nice work, do u know how to get https to work?it’s kinda strange that we can use https with kindle’s own browser

  8. Configure laptop Firefox proxy to 127.0.0.1:8099. If you like, you can forward additional ports for SSL etc as separate SSH tunnels

    HOW ??????

    I am try it, but not work ((

    I configure laptop Firefox proxy to 127.0.0.1:443 and 443:72.21.206.113:80 user@192.168.2.1

    But it isnot work why?

    Then i try configure laptop Firefox proxy to 127.0.0.1:443 and 443:72.21.206.113:443 user@192.168.2.1 not work too

  9. NOP permalink

    Will it work in kindle 2?

  10. How to use SSL? I try forward all ports to 72.21.206.113:80 but it not work. Help me please

  11. wait a second…

    are you telling me that if I buy a kindle 3g from amazon now and follow the procedure you wrote above, I will have free internet network for my computers???

  12. any chance of someone doing a screen video ‘how to’ would be very much appreciated. thanks.

  13. any way to do this on a PC??

  14. Many thanks for the article. Did you ever get gmail working – seems to be general issue in accessing https sites ?

  15. explodr permalink

    You cheap jackass, people doing this is what’s going to cause Amazon to stop offering free 3G on the Kindle

  16. If you’re having trouble setting up the ssh tunnel between the kindle and your laptop this command does the trick, enter it in terminal on your laptop.

    ssh -L 8099:72.21.210.242:80 root@192.168.2.2

  17. Andover permalink

    Have you figured out how to do SSL? I can’t visit any SSL sites, even though I’ve imported the certificates from the Kindle.

  18. Oh, my god, this can also be implemented. Great.

  19. dimi permalink

    Could it somehow work as modem with Adroid 3.0 (honeycomb or later) on Acer Iconia A500 via USB-USB or miniUSB-USB??? TIA

  20. dimi permalink

    Is it possible to use Kindle as 3G modem with Android devices (ver. 1.6-3.0) via miniUSB-USB?

  21. pupkin permalink

    fyi: the x-fsn can be found in /var/local/java/prefs/cookies/Cookie__x-fsn_WITH_DOMAIN__$$cookie.store.domains.cookie

  22. Sal permalink

    Can anyone confirm that this worked? I have the Kindle 3 (3G). Also, did Amazon charge you for it?

  23. wischi permalink

    Does this still work?

  24. elly permalink

    I’m having trouble running the tcpdump command, I’m receiving the message:

    tcpdump-arm: ppp0: No such device exists
    (SIOCGIFHWADDR: No such device)

    How can I proceed from here?

  25. Dave permalink

    Hi…
    Ive been able to get to the point of getting the x-fsn key on this instructions.

    I’ve found the x-fsn key… but its a looooong key.. with some “/” in it… imnot sure what the x-fsn key is that I need to put in the header… and I cant find any examples of any x-fsn keys.

    1) do I enter the as the header info in firefox the “x-fsn xxxxxx etc etc” or just “xxxxx’

    2) do enter all the “x-fsn” code from “x-fsn” up to where it says “domain=$$cookie.store.domains
    path=/”

  26. Dave permalink

    Im having troubles with the SSH intruction number 7 as well.. I have a program called putty.. i’ve connected to the kindle… but not sure how I create that ssh.

    so I put the details into putty, or do I do it within the kindle.
    please help.. I think its entering the “user@192.168.2.2″ bit thats slightly confusing me

    thank you in

  27. ultranalog permalink

    This is awesome. You rock for this hack.

    > ssh doesn’t always work (does anyone know why?)

    It doesn’t work when the wireless is on. If you already have an ssh connection running it will stay alive though.

  28. does it work on kindle touch?

  29. Another, simple, built-in way to find the x-fsn is to run,
    lipc-get-prop com.lab126.framework xfsn

  30. Sal permalink

    This article is much better:

    http://lickitung.it.cx/page/tether.html

  31. Using “~/tcpdump-arm -nAi ppp0 -s0 | grep x-fsn” makes life easy :)

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