I recently found myself at a train station that claimed to offer “free super-fast wi-fi”; but when I connected to it, I was stuck with a little question mark in the gnome toolbar, and the chrome dinosaur.
I’m not the first person to note this, but I did manage to get it working… eventually.
I opened up a terminal, and even though the browser was sad, I could ping:
$ ping google.com PING google.com (22.214.171.124) 56(84) bytes of data. From _gateway (10.102.0.5) icmp_seq=1 Destination Net Prohibited
Sort of. DNS was working, anyway. So I tried curl:
$ curl -vL "https://www.google.com" * Rebuilt URL to: https://www.google.com/ * Trying 126.96.36.199... * TCP_NODELAY set * Connected to www.google.com (188.8.131.52) port 443 (#0) ... snip ...
And it looked like I was getting the actual Google homepage, not a hijacked page, which was interesting.
At that point I took the IP address from that request, and stuck it directly in the browser, hoping to skip straight there; and now the browser decided to show me the T&C page I needed. Once I’d ticked the right box, I was online.