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Old 05-14-2007, 08:42 PM   #1
Tzolkin
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Registered: May 2007
Location: TN
Distribution: Kubuntu 7.10
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Question Possible migrant looking for assurance of hardware compatability


Hello, somewhat of a newbie here with some questions about specific hardware. Recently I began to lose faith in MS, and after a heated debate about EULA I decided I'd had enough, and tried out a LiveCD of Knoppix. Needless to say I liked it, but I have a few questions before I start using Linux on a more permanent basis.

I'm really hoping to install Knoppix or something at least like it on my laptop, a Dell Inspiron 1200, which is confirmed to work well under Knoppix, but the peripherals I have for it, I'm not sure about.

They are:
  • 4-port Mobile USB hub (seems to work fine, but not sure)
  • Dell Wireless 1350 WLAN PCMCIA Card (didn't want to work from the LiveCD, though I noticed tools to configure it. I don't know much about configuring, though)
  • Wacom Graphire 4 Tablet (untested, but important)
  • Canon Canoscan D1250 U2F (not as important, untested)
  • Impact 128mb Flash Drive (untested, but relatively important)

So, mainly I'm looking for confirmation that these devices will work under Linux, and also I'm asking if Knoppix is installable to the hard drive? (And if not, is there something like it that can be, easily) Some of the answers might be on this site, but being confused I haven't been efficient at searching through all the content here. I'll keep looking, but I wanted to ask also.

My main concern is my wireless card, of course. It's the only thing keeping me from switching, since I'm not so concerned about software; the few windows-only programs I use have been listed as working within Wine, if I recall correctly. Dell didn't give me a windows system disk though, so a Linux install would be a one-way ticket, thus my hesitation.

Waiting with anticipation,
--Tzolkin
 
Old 05-14-2007, 11:40 PM   #2
Matir
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The flash drive will work, as will the HUB. The pcmcia card probably needs the 'ndiswrapper' driver wrapper for that card. Every wacom tablet I've seen has worked as well. Can't say anything about the printer/scanner, though I suggest checking linuxprinting.org for that.

If I could suggest a distribution for this, I would use Ubuntu. It has excellent hardware support in my experience.
 
Old 05-14-2007, 11:55 PM   #3
rshaw
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sane does not support the canoscan d1250u2. there is someone working on it, but i doubt it will be done soon enough to do you any good.
 
Old 05-15-2007, 03:04 AM   #4
chrism01
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How much diskspace have you got? You'll prob want to dual-boot for a while until you get used to Linux.
 
Old 05-15-2007, 03:55 AM   #5
Tzolkin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by chrism01
How much diskspace have you got? You'll prob want to dual-boot for a while until you get used to Linux.
The HDD is supposed to have somewhere around 40 gigs on it. I don't really use much of it at present, but the way the partition is set up, there's immovable files in a not-so-good place. And reinstalling Windows isn't an option, as Dell didn't give me a windows disk with the computer.

I've already got a bit of experience with Linux. Namely, DSL on one of my really slow machines. It works okay, but isn't as user friendly as I need for an every day desktop environment like my laptop. Heck, I've even successfully compiled from source before.

Another thing has come up with my windows system that makes me wanna throw XP out a window; within the past few days, Windows has permanently fubared 2 CD-RWs, one of which I considered my personal disc. I couldn't even put them in without locking up the computer. Luckily I still had backups of the files on my Hard Drive. It's as if the thing knows I'm plotting to get rid of it, and wants to make the process as difficult as possible. :P

Oh, thanks for the info, Matir and rshaw. Very helpful. As I said before, I'm not as concerned about the scanner. I rarely use it anyway. But the wireless is something my setup can't do without, since I don't have a wired access point for it unless I go to the router's location. I'll definately check out ndiswrapper.
 
Old 05-15-2007, 01:23 PM   #6
Tzolkin
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I'm running from the Knoppix LiveCD now, through the wired LAN. I cannot get ndiswrapper to work, at all. What I did, was get the drivers for my device, and put the folders containing the drivers onto a pen drive. I then tried to run the configuration, but it didn't work. On two drivers I tried, nothing happened at all, and on the other two, it told me the module was installed but no device was found. I even tried removing the card and putting it back in. Nothing. The lights on the device are dim, and it does nothing. Knoppix does seem to know something.. it says there's an eth0 and eth1, eth1 being labelled as wireless, but I don't know what to do. Please help. I'm set on switching to Linux, now, if only I can get Wifi to work.

--Tzolkin
 
Old 05-15-2007, 02:44 PM   #7
Matir
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Can you provide the output of "cardctl info" and "lsmod"? This might show specifically what chipset your wireless is detected as. "dmesg | grep eth1" would also be informative as to that. If it is a bcmwl5 chipset, you might be able to use the native driver these days.
 
Old 05-15-2007, 04:13 PM   #8
Tzolkin
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Matir
Can you provide the output of "cardctl info" and "lsmod"? This might show specifically what chipset your wireless is detected as. "dmesg | grep eth1" would also be informative as to that. If it is a bcmwl5 chipset, you might be able to use the native driver these days.
Okay, I'll pull those up. From what I got from *scratches head* uh.. 'lspci'? It gave the number BCM4306 along with the name of the company, Broadcom.

The output for cardctl info:
Code:
PRODID_1="Broadcom"
PRODID_2="802.11b CardBus"
PRODID_3="8.0"
PRODID_4=""
MANFID=02d0,0406
FUNCID=6
Here's lsmod output:
Code:
Module                  Size  Used by
arc4                    6144  2
ecb                     7680  2
blkcipher               9984  1 ecb
ieee80211_crypt_wep     9216  1
ndiswrapper           185812  0
i915                   23168  2
ipv6                  279616  10
i810                   23552  0
drm                    78612  4 i915,i810
sworks_agp             13472  0
nvidia_agp             12316  0
ati_agp                13068  0
amd_k7_agp             12812  0
ali_agp                11136  0
dm_mod                 60440  0
af_packet              29960  0
snd_intel8x0           37020  1
snd_ac97_codec         97188  1 snd_intel8x0
e100                   38792  0
mii                     9728  1 e100
bcm43xx               429856  0
ieee80211softmac       33792  1 bcm43xx
ieee80211              37320  2 bcm43xx,ieee80211softmac
ieee80211_crypt        10368  2 ieee80211_crypt_wep,ieee80211
8250_pci               24704  0
8250                   28164  1 8250_pci
serial_core            25216  1 8250
i2c_i801               12044  0
snd_ac97_bus            6528  1 snd_ac97_codec
snd_pcm_oss            45728  0
snd_mixer_oss          20224  1 snd_pcm_oss
snd_pcm                80004  3 snd_intel8x0,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm_oss
snd_timer              26500  1 snd_pcm
snd                    55396  8 snd_intel8x0,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm_oss,snd_mixer_oss,snd_pcm,snd_timer
soundcore              12512  1 snd
snd_page_alloc         13960  2 snd_intel8x0,snd_pcm
intel_agp              27420  1
agpgart                36044  8 drm,sworks_agp,nvidia_agp,ati_agp,amd_k7_agp,ali_agp,intel_agp
tsdev                  11840  0
joydev                 13760  0
evdev                  14208  1
pcmcia                 41132  2
firmware_class         14208  2 bcm43xx,pcmcia
yenta_socket           30220  3
rsrc_nonstatic         17408  1 yenta_socket
pcmcia_core            43800  3 pcmcia,yenta_socket,rsrc_nonstatic
cpufreq_ondemand       12300  1
p4_clockmod            10116  0
speedstep_lib           8836  1 p4_clockmod
freq_table              9088  2 cpufreq_ondemand,p4_clockmod
video                  19460  0
thermal                17928  0
sbs                    18856  0
processor              36200  1 thermal
i2c_ec                  9216  1 sbs
i2c_core               25984  2 i2c_i801,i2c_ec
fan                     8836  0
container               8576  0
button                 10768  0
battery                14084  0
ac                      9348  0
aufs                   88244  1
cloop                  18208  1
sbp2                   28292  0
ohci1394               38960  0
ieee1394              300760  2 sbp2,ohci1394
usb_storage            73408  1
usbhid                 56928  0
ff_memless              9992  1 usbhid
libusual               20624  1 usb_storage
ohci_hcd               24580  0
uhci_hcd               27788  0
ehci_hcd               35848  0
usbcore               135812  8 ndiswrapper,usb_storage,usbhid,libusual,ohci_hcd,uhci_hcd,ehci_hcd
dmesg was more confusing than I could handle, but I did notice it said the card failed. I'm not really sure what to do, here. Ndiswrapper -l listed it as installed and the device present, but it doesn't work.

--Tzolkin
 
Old 05-15-2007, 04:31 PM   #9
Matir
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BCM4306 should be natively supported by the bcm43xx driver. You may need to download the 'fwcutter' (or similar) package to get the firmware, but then it should work like any wireless card.
 
Old 05-15-2007, 09:53 PM   #10
Tzolkin
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Registered: May 2007
Location: TN
Distribution: Kubuntu 7.10
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Exclamation

Quote:
Originally Posted by Matir
BCM4306 should be natively supported by the bcm43xx driver. You may need to download the 'fwcutter' (or similar) package to get the firmware, but then it should work like any wireless card.
Ah. I see, now. So there's a driver already there, but it conflicts with ndiswrapper? I searched around on the internet for ideas on how to use the existing driver, but all of them would require me to install a utility, something I can't do without a HD install, which I'm not ready for.

So, I somehow figured out how to unload the module with 'modprobe -r bcm43xx', from root, then I tried ndiswrapper again and it worked. The little power light on my PCMCIA card is on, but it still can't connect to the router. From what I can tell, it's a misconfiguration in iwconfig, which I don't know much about.

Are there any good resources out there for how to configure my WLAN? I have a WEP encryption key, as well, I think.

Update: I manage to get it to connect to the router, but it refused to connect to anything outside the LAN. For the life of me I still can't figure out how I got that far, but when I tried to fix the problem the thing locked down and wouldn't do any connections at all.

Update2: I got it working! Though, the lights in the device are backwards when compared to windows. I hope that won't hurt it, since it connects just fine, now. :?

Thanks for the help..

--Tzolkin

Last edited by Tzolkin; 05-16-2007 at 01:36 PM.
 
Old 05-16-2007, 02:07 PM   #11
Tzolkin
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Registered: May 2007
Location: TN
Distribution: Kubuntu 7.10
Posts: 18

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Ah, I fixed the 'indicator light reversal' now, too. Again, thanks for all the help. I'll probably need to ask something again, sometime, though. Heh.
 
  


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