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Old 04-21-2008, 10:02 AM   #1
Travst
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Enabling Wireless Card-Slackware


I'm running Slackware 12 and am new to Linux. I've done the install and have a desktop. However, I cannot enable my wireless card (Linksys WPC54G). I've gone into the Network Settings GUI and attempted to enable it, but the green check mark quickly switches back to the red X. What do I need to do? I've read up a bit on ndiswrapper, but supposedly this version of Slackware contains the proper driver.

The laptop is a whitebox with Intel chipset and graphics. Everything except the wireless seems to be working fine.

Thank you for your help.
 
Old 04-21-2008, 10:29 AM   #2
indienick
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I've got the same networking card with Slackware 12; the solution is [relatively] simple.

You need to go to the Linksys webwsite, and find the proper driver for your card. Afterwards, you will have to unzip it, and use ndiswrapper to set up the bcmwl5.inf file as a kernel module.

Resort to the ndiswrapper documentation, or the Slackboox (which is available free, online). I've only ever set up ndiswrapper on Debian, which is done through the marvelous "m-a a-i" command, but I don't think Slackware has the same command.

My problem is, that wireless card is the /only/ form of networking I have for that laptop - there is no ethernet built into the motherboard.
 
Old 04-21-2008, 11:40 AM   #3
Ace Blackwell
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Try this

I had the same issue with my laptop. Using Slackware 12. the driver was supposed to be supported. It installed but never worked. (bcmwl5) So I first used the fwcutter process. It worked-sorta. What you do with fwcutter is it will cut from the windows driver what is needs to run in Linux. It creates firmware files and they have to be dumped in a given directory. I can't remember of the top of my head. It worked but was only about 11mps. I undid that and tried ndiswrapper. It worked and I'm running at 54mps most of the time. The secret to getting ndiswrapper to work is to Blacklist the "automatic" network driver used by slackware. Otherwise I was unable to get it to work. Here are a couple threads to check out. I was given some great advise in these two

Search for Ace Blackwell, then follow Ndiswrapper thread and BCM43XX-4318 thread. The one long instruction by wificraig put me on my way and my follow up in the other thread got me online.

Good luck
Ace
 
Old 04-21-2008, 12:27 PM   #4
Travst
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Thanks for all the info. I'm still working on this issue... as with everything I've attempted in Linux so far, I have to deviate from wireless to GETTING MY FLASH DRIVE TO WORK (so I can load the driver)! rofl... this is crazy, but I have to learn sometime.
 
Old 04-21-2008, 12:37 PM   #5
Ace Blackwell
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I can understand. I installed Slackware 12 just to learn. Actually Linux Mint did most of the stuff for me. But when I went to S12, I'm running a dual boot and kept having to go back between the two to get to the internet. And I had to use my flash drive to get data back and forth.

It's frustrating at times but it does add a sense of accomplishment. Even now, I still don't have every thing the way I want it LOL but I boot to Linux now and I use it primarily.

Good Luck

Ace
 
Old 04-21-2008, 12:45 PM   #6
Travst
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Thanks... I have a number of computers, so I put Linux on a laptop as its only OS. I think the biggest hurdle is just figuring out how to approach things. I have NO Unix background.
 
Old 04-21-2008, 01:31 PM   #7
Ace Blackwell
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No background

I can relate. I'm FAR from an expert, but in my opinion, you will need to get a list of prompt commands to help you move around, copy files, etc. I used MC (midnight commander) to give me a little more visual of file manipulation. It didn't give me the errors that Konquer did.

I'm not sure of your background, but the file layout takes some getting used to. I still don't know where stuff is located naturally but I can get to them if I'm told the directory. I would suggest scanning over the layout of system files, personal files etc so you'll be able to run stuff down. Also learning the find and whereis commands will help with this.

The first things I worked on was getting online because that's were all the info and various packages can be gotten. Also getting sound to work was a biggie for me.

And thats about where I'm at now. I've only been at this a few months.

Ace
 
Old 04-23-2008, 08:51 PM   #8
indienick
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I've gotten the Linksys wifi card working! Here's what I did:
  1. I have my personal laptop that I used to download the ndiswrapper source code, and the network card's driver from Linksys.
  2. Compiled ndiswrapper from source.
  3. Ran "ndiswrapper -i /path/to/bcmwl5.inf" and "ndiswrapper -i /path/to/bcmwl5a.inf". Then ran "ndiswrapper -l", followed by a "modprobe ndiswrapper".
  4. And from there on in, I followed the Slackbook's section on wireless networking (Section 5.5).
However, I will note that after following the Slackbook, it didn't leave me with an effortless system (which was my goal with this laptop, as it's for my mum, and while I love her to bits, she's not all that good with computers).

Secondary steps:
  1. I noticed that Slackware had detected, and was loading a bcm43xx module on boot - no good - so, I black listed it.
    Code:
    # echo "blacklist bcm43xx" >> /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist
  2. Now, to make sure my ndiswrapper module loaded on boot, I had to do the following:
    Code:
    # echo "/sbin/modprobe ndiswrapper" >> /etc/rc.d/rc.modules
  3. After that was done, I went in to /etc/rc.d/rc.wireless and added the following lines:
    Code:
    IFNAME[4]="wlan0"
    USE_DHCP[4]="yes"
    WLAN_ESSID[4]="my-home-network's-essid"
    WLAN_MODE[4]=Managed
    WLAN_CHANNEL[4]="11"
    WLAN_KEY[4]="my-wep-key"
Note that this laptop will never leave the house (mainly because the battery no longer holds a charge), but my mum has no reason to take it anywhere; it will connect to my wireless network at home on boot.
 
Old 04-23-2008, 09:09 PM   #9
elliott678
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Which version of the WPC54G do you have? There are many, not all are Broadcom, so the instructions given in this thread may not work. I have a version 2 and it has a TI ACX111 chipset.
 
Old 04-23-2008, 09:18 PM   #10
indienick
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I realize that - thank you for the reminder, elliott78.

However, unless your wireless card is natively supported in Linux, the ndiswrapper method will work, regardless of the chipset of your card - you will just need to find the card's .INF file and load it into ndiswrapper.
 
  


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