This guide is about how to setup the Huawei Mobile WiFi E5331 device to use with the giffgaff, Ovivo, Samba and Three mobile broadband networks. This guide is not an unlocking guide, as I purposely brought an unlocked device from ebay.
WARNING: You are not to hold anyone responsible for any costs, damages or another issues that occur from following this guide. Whilst I provide details for securing the MiFi device, they are only basic security precautions, and you could make additional changes to further secure the box.
Background: I brought an unlocked E5331 device from eBay and was eager to use the mobile wireless device out and about. I had a few problems initially setting up the box, and I thought I would write a user guide for securing the MiFi device, changing WiFi details and configuring for use with four UK mobile broadband providers.
I hope this guide saves you some time! If you find the guide useful, please say thank you in a comment.
Overview of the Huawei MiFi E5331.
Before I look at configuring the device, let me give you an overview of the MiFi device. The one I brought was already unlocked, and is a lightweight device, that can easily be carried around. It is smaller than my current mobile phone!
I usually sit it down on a table or on some other stable wood furniture. I never place it on a soft material, as I think that could heat it up. I could be wrong! Just something I don’t do with any electronics.
The device can apparently cope with up to eight connections, but I’ve only used one device at a time! So it also could be used as a temporary secondary internet connection, if a primary such as ADSL or cable has a fault.
It is a good alternative to phone ‘tethering’, i.e. sharing an internet connection from a mobile phone. Plus it means that when working with my laptop, I am draining the MiFi device’s battery, and not my mobile phone battery!
I am quite impressed with this device. The ease of configuration and functionality, means I will definitely carry on using it.
How to set up the Huawei MiFi E5331 device.
It is important that you move to secure this box as quickly as possible, once turned on. Before you move onto configuring for mobile broadband, you need to configure the access and WiFi settings for the box.
- With the device’s back case removed, remove the battery and note down the wifi access details.
- Now insert your SIM card into the MiFi device, insert the battery and put the cover back on the device.
- Turn the device on.
- Connect to that wifi network from a desktop, tablet or mobile computer. For set up purposes I used a desktop, which made the whole process easier!
- In your preferred web browser, browse to the location http://192.168.1.1
- Now from the ‘Settings’ menu, select ‘WLAN’ and then ‘WLAN Basic Settings’.
- You should now change the details to something more secure. For example I’ve selected WPA/WPA2-PSK and AES, and then entered a complex password. Once the details have been entered, hit ‘Apply’.
- You will now have to connect to the ‘new’ wifi network and access the admin area again.
- Again select the ‘Settings’ menu, and this time select ‘Security’.
- Now please make sure the ‘Firewall’ is enabled via the ‘Firewall Switch’ sub-menu.
- Next from the ‘System’ menu, again under ‘Settings’, please select ‘Modify Password’.
- Now enter a unique and complex password for the device.
You need to make sure you have a signal!
The first time I opened the device and configured it, I presumed I had a mobile signal! Alas I didn’t, and I had to move it elsewhere to get one to two bars of signal strength. I find the signal strength reading (available via the admin area), a useful feature that I regularly use.
How to access the configuration / setup options for the Ovivo network.
I’ve paid one payment for the SIM card and the mobile broadband package I’ve selected. Then as long as I stick within my monthly data allowance, I don’t incur further charges! Pretty good deal!
Also the Ovivo mobile broadband package I have, means every so often when I’m browsing the internet, I need to view an ‘Ovivo’ page, which consists of adverts and other details. Then after a while I can continue to my intended destination. I guess that is partly why the deal is so good.
It is highly important that you activate the Ovivo SIM (only need to do this once) before you try and use the internet. Otherwise you will only have ‘local’ network access, and not ‘internet’ access when connected to the device.
- Via a live internet connection (not trying to use the Ovivo service) make sure you activate your Ovivo SIM card at https://activate.ovivomobile.com/
- Connect to your MiFi device via a wireless network connection.
- Visit the location http://192.168.1.1 via a web browser.
- From the ‘Settings’ menu select ‘Dial-Up’ and then ‘Mobile Connection’.
- Select ‘Auto’ for connection mode, and then select ‘Apply’. Note: Personally I have not selected ‘Enable even when roaming’.
- Now select ‘Profile Management’, and then ‘New Profile.
- Provide a profile name such as Ovivo Mobile and for the APN type ovivomobile.com, as seen in the screenshot. Leave the User name and password blank. Finally select ‘Save’.
- Now from the ‘System’ menu, select ‘Reboot’.
- Now your Ovivo service should work!
Internet Settings for the giffgaff network.
I also use the giffgaff service which utilises the O2-UK network. Once you’ve inserted your SIM and started the mifi device, it is straightforward to set up the box. If you follow the instructions above for setting up the Ovivo service, then instead of filling in the Ovivo details, use:
Settings for the Samba and Three UK network.
I also happen to use the fantastic Samba network. Whilst I’ve never used the device with Three (unlike all the others mentioned), Samba actually utilises the Three UK network, and I believe the settings are the same.
You can send and receive SMS messages via the device! I don’t actually have this need, but via the admin area of the MiFi device you can read and send SMS messages for the SIM you’ve placed in the device.
If you’ve found this guide useful, please take a moment to say thank you via the comments.