Guide to NdisWrapper for MN-720 MN-730 Microsoft Wireless Cards in SusE 9.x
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By Groovelab at 2004-12-02 13:47
Note: I have not only the Microsoft MN-730 Wireless G Card on an Athlon Desktop machine, but I also have the matching MN-700 "Base Station"/router.
Note 2: Microsoft networking cards use the broadcom chipset. So THEY WILL work in linux and work very well with strong signal.
I) Get Microsoft drivers for your non linux supported wireless card, mn720-ankh.inf, mn720-50.sys (for both the mn 720/730)
II) Install Suse, duh :) Then place drivers in a folder somewhere, remember it.
III) Goto www.rpmfind.net, get the latest Suse build Ndiswrapper.RPM and associated libraries
IV) Install Ndiswrapper with YAST, get any more libraries if needed to complete install
Step 1: NDISWRAPPER "Wraps itself around" any windows driver to operate a device for which no linux driver exists. Either installed on your windows partition (if you still have one) or can be downloaded from Microsoft.com or Google search you need to place the following files for MN-720/730 into a directory on your linux partition. Both use the same driver files:
MN720-ankh.inf (this is what ndiswrapper loads and then uses the .sys file)
*** Since Windows doesn't recognize linux partitions, in Suse/KDE open the K-Menu by the clicking the little green round lizard button on the menu-bar. Use "Find Files", Named: = "mn720*.*" Look in: = "file:/". This will point to the root directory of your hard disk(s), and whatever you find just copy files mentioned above to a new directory wherever you like in linux.
Step 2: Collect the following information: SSID/ESSID (they are the same thing, it is a GIVEN name YOU made when installing your wireless base station, for the MN-700 base station Microsoft lovingly calls this the "WIRELESS NETWORK NAME" in its broadband utility.)
Step 3: Turn OFF your encryption, WPA, WEP, etc. on your base-station/router We will turn it on later once you're computer connects to your base station successfully. Right now it is one less variable to troubleshoot. Use your windows setup utility if need be, or just use the reset button with a small pen or whatnot, to reset it to the default (Security OFF and Channel 6).
Step 4: Goto www.RPMFIND.net or Google search for "ndiswrapper rpm Suse". Then get the newest ndiswrapper (non development version) rpm. Get the Suse version if at all possible for Suse version 9.x. Its pretty available on the net. The i586 version will work for Pentium 1 generation chips and beyond. Click the "Little Blue House" (that links to your user's home directory) on the menu-bar where most browser downloads are placed. You should see it there, but if it somehow wound up on your desktop, move it there.
Step5: Now click on your newly downloaded NdisWrapper RPM file. As long as its NOT on the desktop but in a regular file folder, the window will show you a button to automatically Install with YAST. Do this. Suse depending on your version, personal (like me), or pro like others may or may not comes with the needed "dependencies" which are files libraries used to compile the bastard :) Most likely is you are using the personal version you will need to also get the Suse RPMs for GCC, GLIBC, MAKE. They are all on RPMFIND.net, and if there is anything I missed, YAST will tell you, goto RPMFIND.net and get it too, install them in whatever order it likes, since one depends on another, then on another, etc.
Step 6: Once YAST has finished installing Ndiswrapper. Open a Konsole in super user mode, or just open a Konsole/Terminal and type in "su root", then enter your password from when you installed Suse. This puts you in root mode, otherwise known as super user. The following steps are done in the konsole mode as root.
Step 7: type in "ndiswrapper -i /path/to/mn720-ankh.inf" This tell ndiswrapper where the .inf and the associated .sys is.
Step 8: type in "ndiswrapper -l" This will display your installed "wrapped" Microsoft drivers.
Step 9: type "modprobe ndiswrapper" This is uses the modprobe command to load a driver into linux, which points to ndiswrapper as a driver, which in turn is controlling your windows driver for your device.
Step 10: type in "iwconfig wlan0 essid [SSID name goes here]" This is the iwconfig command, which displays or sets settings for your wireless extensions. wlan0 is the default if you only have one wireless card.
Step 11: If you didn't listen to me before and left your base station's security on (WEP), then type in "iwconfig wlan0 key restricted [enter key here]"
Step 12: type in "ndiswrapper -m" which will write an alias to to the modprobe config file.
*** Normally this would finish us off, but more than likely eth0, NOT wlan0 will dominate upon reboot.***
Type in "route" at the konsole as root and it will show you whether your system behaved well, a lot of times it won't. Two solutions are proposed, one creates a simple text file, one uses YAST. I used both to cover my butt :)
A.) K-Menu, System, File Manager, File Manager - Super User Mode. Must be in super user.
B.) Browse "directories-folders" to /etc/sysconfig/network
C.) In that folder, look for a text file named "ifcfg-wlan0"
D.) If it exists, use Kwrite or whatever Editor from the "File" menu in the folder window, add the following lines.
E.) If it doesn't exist, make one. It will look like the following:
WIRELESS_ESSID='[enter your SSID here]'
WIRELESS_KEY='[enter your WEP security key here]'
F.) Save your file, as "ifcfg-wlan0" in the directory mentioned above. Linux will look for this as a mandatory network device upon bootup.
A.) Open YAST, Network Devices, Network Card.
B.) Choose Configure button.
C.) Device Type = Wireless
Configuration Name = 0
Hardware Config. Name = static-0
Module Name = Ndiswrapper
D.) Click Wireless Settings Button
E.)Operating Mode = Managed or Auto
Network Name (ESSID) = [enter your chosen name, must match router-basestation]
Encryption Key = [Didn't I tell you to turn it off at the base station, until later????]
E.) Once done with that, use the NEXT button.
F.) Use ADVANCED, DHCP Client Options.
G.) Check the broadcast response box.