Dell EM7455 on PFSense (FreeBSD)?

Hi All,

I have ordered a Dell version of the EM7455 along with an m.2 to USB adapter and would like to use it as a backup WAN interface in PFSense 2.3.2 (current stable release based on FreeBSD 10.3 kernel).

I came across a thread in the PFSense forums ( which indicate the MC73xx modules weren’t working yet on on PFSense 2.2.3 so their solution was to change the device PID/VID to ones that were supported since the firmware wasn’t all that different from some of the older modules. I realize that isn’t a true solution and ideally appropriate driver support would have to be written into FreeBSD as a proper resolution. However, I cannot find anything that would indicate proper FreeBSD drivers were ever added for MC73xx or MC/EM7455 since the time the PFSense thread was authored (2015).

My question is this: is there anyone out there running the EM74xx under FreeBSD/PFSense and if so, how is it configured? I keep reading a lot of different setups under OpenWRT some using PPP, QMI, MBIM, etc. All I want is to be able to connect the Dell EM7455 to my local provider (T-Mobile) and use it as a defined WAN interface in PFSense whilst achieving true LTE speeds (not the 25Mbps limit that exists using PPP).

My current low-cost setup for backup WAN in PFSense is using EasyTether running on an Android phone connected via USB to the router (WAN is the tap0 interface as configured by the EasyTether client in FreeBSD). The downside of this setup is the double NAT and random loss of throughput / stability. The connection is essentially tunneled through ADB packets in Android so I would like to avoid all the “middle men” and allow FreeBSD to directly interface with an LTE modem (EM7455 in this case).

Thanks to anyone who reads this and cares to offer any help.


Haven’t heard of anyone adding QMI or MBIM support in the FreeBSD kernel :neutral_face:

There’s an MBIM driver in that other BSD now, so it shouldn’t be hard to fix for anyone interested:

But I’m not…

Sorry for the late reply. Thank you both for your comments, at least I wasn’t overlooking something simple. My solution at this time was to flash a copy of the LEDE firmware onto one of my little Gl-iNet routers which connects to the EM7455 and communicates with it over MBIM. I use this setup as a gateway ‘device’ for the WAN on my pfSense box. This setup has been rock solid and I’ve only had to reset it once or twice since I’ve had it up and running.

It looks like the latest pfSense release has added a package for cellular connectivity drivers but it seems to be just Huawei devices for now (and no mention of MBIM or QMI so regardless, not worth running over PPP anyways). Eventually it would be nice to have everything running on the pfSense box (Gl-iNet has the limitation of 10/100 LAN so it is a slight bottleneck given the faster LTE speeds now available to my area) but my setup is fine for now. I will keep an eye on umb.4 for OpenBSD, maybe that will make it’s way into FreeBSD or I will someday spend the time getting the package into it myself, but I am okay with things as they are presently (‘if it works, don’t fix it’, as they say).