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I'm very new to Linux and I'm running Debian. I'm having a lot of fun getting stuff running on my HP Omnibook XE3 laptop, but I'm having a hard time grasping exactly how drivers work in Linux. I'm trying to get my wireless card working and I've downloaded the correct driver, but I'm just not sure what to do with it. I read the readme file and it started talking about the 'make' command and such. What is it? What is the makefile? Do I have to save or extract the driver in a specific place? What do I do with once it is there? etc, etc.
Basically, what I'm asking is there a general driver tutorial out there that will give me an idea of how they work and what I'll need to do to go about installing one?
these commands aren't anythign to do with drivers, just about how to compile stuff from source. there are plenty of guides about compiling code from source online, including our linuxanswers section and our wiki too.
Consider using Debian apt commands to locate and install precompiled drivers as needed for you system. The procedure for doing this should be described in you Debian documentation (or on-line). (Being a Fedora user, I'm not familiar with the details for Deb. But I'm fairly sure that they're easy to find.)
Thanks for the replies. I think I'd like to do the apt-get commands rather than compiling my own. Here's another question, though. How do I know what files to apt-get? Is there a list of drivers somewhere? I'm trying to install a Gigafast wireless 802.11B card (WF721-AEX). Is there some sort of generic driver I can get or does it have to be specific to that card?
but then this driver is stock on my fedora boxs, so may well be on your hippy distribution too. if so it's just a "modprobe atmel" to load it and nothing more (i think.. not used many wireless devices myself.)