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Old 10-19-2012, 04:00 PM   #1
RJDonMudpond
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Registered: Oct 2012
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How to configure WLAN0


Hi,
Although I've been using Ubuntu for a couple of years now it was via an old Dell laptop that was set up with dual-boot for Windows. Since I hadn't used the Windows partition after installing Ubuntu I recently decided to remove it by formatting the drive and installing Ubuntu 12.04 LTS. Prior to doing so I was able to use the laptop wirelessly, however after upgrading it would appear that I can't activate my wireless card. I've been attempting to follow all sorts of help threads in forums, but I keep hitting dead-ends or road blocks of not really knowing how to utilize some commands or functions.
One of the basic commands listed in the forums is to use "iwconfig". I can issue the command, but the response only shows:
lo no wireless extensions
eth1 no wireless extensions


In the sample response it would appear as though I'm also suppose to see a wlan0 entry along with details of either the driver or card, I believe that's the first problem I need to correct, how to get it to recognize I have a wireless card installed?
When I use the "lspci | grep Network" command it shows that I have a "Broadcom Corporation BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN (rev 01)". Following various forums I'm able to verify that Ubuntu should be able to utilize this device, not that there should be any doubt seeing how I was able to use it with my prior version of Ubuntu.
One of the threads I was trying to follow was that I should be making use of ndiswrapper to make use of a Windows driver for the device (which I've downloaded as "sp32156.exe"). Although I've spent a lot of time attempting to download and install ndiswrapper I believe that's a red herring seeing how it appears to already be included with the base Ubuntu. I'm able to issue just "ndiswrapper" and it responds with a usage response. When I issue "ndiswrapper -l" the response is blank. I believe I'm suppose to use ndiswrapper to pull in the sp32156.exe, but I can't figure out how to do that. Also, since the file is a Windows .exe am I suppose to first execute it somehow before using some resulting file in ndiswrapper?
I'd appreciate a little hand-holding here. As indicated by this post to the newbie forum I'm attempting baby-steps.
Thanks,
Randy
 
Old 10-19-2012, 08:25 PM   #2
frankbell
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Registered: Jan 2006
Location: Virginia, USA
Distribution: Slackware, Mageia, Mint
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You are correct. Ndiswrapper should not be necessary.

Back when I had Ubuntu, I could get the drivers for Broadcom by enabling the "Proprietary Drivers for Devices" repositories in Synaptic. Look for that in the configuration for Ubuntu One or whatever Ubuntu is using these days. (I stopped using Ubuntu when 11.10 came out.)

Then, with a wired connection, you should be able to get them. Also, look for an item in the control center that says something like "Additional Hardware." That can also work.

Here's an article that might help.

http://codeghar.wordpress.com/2012/0...-ubuntu-12-04/

This article gives some good background to Broadcom on Linux.

http://linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/b43

Last edited by frankbell; 10-19-2012 at 08:27 PM.
 
Old 10-23-2012, 05:41 PM   #3
RJDonMudpond
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Registered: Oct 2012
Posts: 2

Original Poster
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frankbell,
Just wanted to say thanks for the links. I first followed the instructions in http://linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/b43, but in the end still wound up with only the wired connection working, it would never attempt to use the wireless. However, when I checked out the http://codeghar.wordpress.com/2012/0...-ubuntu-12-04/ site I found the following instructions:
1. Open Additional Drivers application
2. Remove ‘Broadcom STA Driver’
3. Open Ubuntu Software Center
4. Search ‘bcm’
5. Install ‘Installer Package for firmware for the b43 driver’ (firmware-b43-installer)
6. Reboot your computer

In my case it was the removing of the already installed STA driver (steps 1 and 2) that made the difference. The other site had already taken me through the "firmware-b43-installer" portion so when I rebooted it finally started showing activity on the wireless icon, followed by a prompt for the routers password.

Thanks again,
Randy
 
Old 10-23-2012, 08:11 PM   #4
frankbell
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Glad you got it working. Thanks for the update.

I had a similar conflict between the two drivers floundering around on Slackware, before I found the right combination of packages to install. I was reading up on this today (for another reason) and found that the exact version of the Broadcom chip matters.
 
  


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