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Old 12-15-2008, 02:34 PM   #16
pentode
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Wireless connectivity is sometimes (oftentimes) a problem for Linux systems because the chipset drivers are all written for Windows and are proprietary.

Installing ndiswrapper from a tarball may not be the simplest approach if you are new to Linux. I believe Suse uses .rpm packages. I'd suggest doing a little reading on the package management system for your distribution. Then see if you can find an .rpm package for ndiswrapper.

Another option might be to consider purchase of a wireless NIC packaged for a USB port. Then you can get one that will be better supported with native Linux drivers.
 
Old 12-15-2008, 05:21 PM   #17
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Quote:
From being a reasonably competent MS user having grown up as it were with DOS applications, learning my way around Linux is like stumbling around in a blacked out room and nailing jelly to the backside of an angry gorrila! I have yet to find any one place that simulates anything like a comprehensive manual on how to use Linux.
If you haven't found it already Rute is usually a decent place to start. You might also have a look at some of the OReilly books, they tend to be good references. Just remember that Linux is a VERY different beast from anything MS has ever produced. I know when I started in Linux, my MS knowledge was more of a hindrance than a help.

Quote:
I have downloaded what I think is the relevant ndiswrapper.tar file to my working (MS XP) laptop and transferred that with a USB memory stick to a new folder on my Linux desk top. When I then opened that .tar file it has produced around 50 files and I don't know which are needed or what to do with them!
There should be either a README file or an INSTALL file with instructions. Sourceforge seems to be down right now, but once I can, I'll download the ndiswrapper package and have a look and give some more useful advice.

Quote:
The HP site do have an XP driver for the HP2133 Netbook, but although their reference number matches the sticker on the bottom (BCM94312) this is not the same version number as came up when I used lspci and got BCM4310 (rev 01)
You might want to drop HP a line and ask if they know what chipset they put in. Since HP is starting to make noises about supporting Linux, they might be inclined to help. Considering that the 4312 is easier to support than the 4310, it would be worth your time.


Quote:
I downloaded the XP driver file (its an .exe file so I don't know what Linux will make of that!) and have transferred it to a second folder on the Linux desk top.
I suspect it is a self-extracting zip file, in which case the Linux unzip command will likely be able to handle it. Otherwise you'll have to run it on Windows and transfer the extracted files with a USB stick.

Quote:
I found a "Software Management" tool in Yast. But entering ndiswrapper in the search window doesn't find my file on the desktop and doesn't seem to allow me to browse for it. It appears to be set up to install files from a vendor CD (which I don't have) or from a Repository site (which I cannot access without a working internet connection which is what I am trying to set up in the first place!)
Is there any way to get a wired connection? This would be the easiest way to install ndiswrapper if you can.
Quote:
I have been playing with this thing since I bought it over 4 weeks ago and am making nil progress! I am sorely tempted just to stick it on Flea-bay and cut my losses with it and with Linux!
Unfortunately you smacked head-on into one of the worst problems in the Linux world. Broadcom is probably responsible for more people dumping Linux and going back to Windows than any other company. Unfortunately, there isn't a distro that handles this particular chipset well at all. The 4310 is simply a nightmare.

You know, the latest versions of Ubuntu support the 4312 straight away. You could try downloading that and booting it as a live CD. If your wireless works with Ubuntu, then it likely is a 4312.
 
Old 12-15-2008, 06:28 PM   #18
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I wasn't suggesting that I expected an understanding of Microsoft or DOS to help me, -just that I am not a complete numpty when it comes to computers!

I found the README file - not very helpful, and the INSTALL file which does look a bit more promising! I will work through that.

I have e-mailed hp about the chipset and apparent mis-matched driver. Awaiting a response. They do have a "Live help" system but when I entered the product and serial number they say it is no longer supported!! My HP 2133 mini is just 4 weeks old!

The driver is definitely an exe file. I found an App called File Roller which looks promising but cannot handle the file, saying it is not a zip file. I tried unzipping on my other W XP laptop but it just attempts to install the driver and won't give me access to the .inf file which is what I presume I will need. I maybe will find it in the XP Drivers directory now it has attempted to install.

I did try it with an cable connection to my router which allowed LAN access but at the time I was getting DNS problems. I could only access web sites if I manually entered URL addresses in IP form. But that is a possibility.

I do have Ubantu on a CD but the HP mini has no CD / DVD drive. I could load it onto a USB external LaCie HD that I have.

Things to play with. I haven't given up yet!
 
Old 12-18-2008, 04:09 AM   #19
ddclutch
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Well I have made some progress, but the problem is not yet solved.
I have loaded ndiswrapper. I have also loaded the NDISTDK front end, and the icon for it now appears in my "Applications" but nothing happens when I click on it so something is wrong there!

I have downloaded HP's own driver file for W XP as Broadcom apparently don't do one for my specific card which is a BCM4310 USB Controller (rev 01) It is an .exe file so I have opened it and extracted the .inf and .sys files.

Since my ndiswrapper front end isn't working, I don't really know what to do next. And I am still not totally convinced that the problem is driver-related as it did connect intermittently when I first got hp mini 2133
 
Old 12-18-2008, 08:21 AM   #20
Hangdog42
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Quote:
I have downloaded HP's own driver file for W XP as Broadcom apparently don't do one for my specific card which is a BCM4310 USB Controller (rev 01) It is an .exe file so I have opened it and extracted the .inf and .sys files.
Crud, I didn't realize this was a USB card. It doesn't change anything you need to do, it is just that they are prone to more obscure and difficult problems than other types of cards. Also, did you load the inf and sys files onto Linux and use ndiswrapper to install them? If not, you need to do that before doing anything else.


Quote:
Since my ndiswrapper front end isn't working, I don't really know what to do next.
You don't need to use a GUI to run ndiswrapper, the command line will do quite nicely. Use su to become root and then there are a few things to do:

- Before starting, check the output of iwconfig. If iwconfig sees a wireless card, we have to figure out why and blacklist the drivers
- If iwconfig doesn't see a card, load the ndiswrapper driver (modprobe ndiswrapper). If all goes well, you just get a command prompt back. If there is a problem, modprobe will complain.
-If ndiswrapper loaded, you should see a wireless card in the output of iwconfig.

If all went well, your GUI should see the card now.
 
Old 12-18-2008, 11:56 AM   #21
ddclutch
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Hangdog,
Broadcom refer to it as a USB network card but apparently in reality it is a PCI card. Don't ask me why, but it is fairly well documented.

The particular version is also a problem. Apparently the BCM4310 (rev 02) works with a b43 driver, but the rev 01 version which I have, won't. The advice is to use ndiswrapper and a MS driver for XP. That is the bit I am unsure of as I have an idea that the XP version of my hp 2133 uses a different network card anyway. This is the reason why I have not bitten the bullet and actually installed the inf and sys files with ndiswrapper yet. That and the fact that the GUI isn't working.

Somebody else must have had this same problem!

iwcongfig returns "no wireless extensions"

modprobe ndiswrapper just returns the prompt, but presumably because although I have loaded ndiswrapper, I haven't yet fed it with the inf and sys files. Which is the bit I don't understand how to do.

Meanwhile, the Yast GUI for hardware information shows wireless hardware as:
BCM 4310 USB Controller
Drivers: active: no, modprobe: yes, modules: modprobe wl

What does this mean!
???
Guy
 
Old 12-18-2008, 12:08 PM   #22
ddclutch
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Ahh!,

lsmod includes a return for wl
So is wl the currently loaded driver and if so, why isn't the card working with this?

Guy
 
Old 12-18-2008, 02:50 PM   #23
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Quote:
Originally Posted by ddclutch View Post
Ahh!,

lsmod includes a return for wl
So is wl the currently loaded driver and if so, why isn't the card working with this?

Guy
You really need to hammer HP about this. If it is a 4312, then the wl driver should be working. If it is a 4310, then wl won't work. My netbook has a 4312 and wl works great, no fiddling around. The fact that yours doesn't sort of lends credence to the idea that HP slipped a 4310 in there.

Sheesh. If Broadcom wasn't bad enough on its own, HP has to pile on.



Quote:
Apparently the BCM4310 (rev 02) works with a b43 driver, but the rev 01 version which I have, won't.
I'm not surprised. The 4310 seems to be one of the worst when it comes to Linux.

Quote:
iwcongfig returns "no wireless extensions"
Which would be the case if this is a 4310.


Quote:
modprobe ndiswrapper just returns the prompt, but presumably because although I have loaded ndiswrapper, I haven't yet fed it with the inf and sys files. Which is the bit I don't understand how to do.
OK, so the ndiswrapper module is installed fine, that's good. Installing the Windows driver is a one-time deal and is fairly straightforward. Put the .inf and .sys files in the same directory and then (as root) run:

ndiswrapper -i /path/to/filename.inf

If that has worked correctly, ndiswrapper -l should show you what drivers have been installed. At that point if you load the ndiswrapper module (and remove wl with modprobe -r wl) you should have a functioning wireless card. Check iwconfig output to be sure.
 
Old 12-18-2008, 04:34 PM   #24
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The sticker on the base of the machine says it has a BCM 94312MCG
when I ran lspci I get:
Network Controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4310 USB Controller (rev 01)

In the GUI for hardware inf. it shows the Network card as BCM4310 USB Controller (eth1) and the driver as wl

when I ran dmesg I get:
ethl: Broadcom BCM4315 802.11 Wireless Controller 4.170.77.6

against wl: I get no version for "struct_module" found: kernel tainted.
and: module not supported by Novell, setting U taint flag.

the final line says:
ethl (WE) : Driver using old /proc/net/wireless support, please fix driver !

AND, ......
as I have been typing this on my old Dell laptop next to the hp 2133 it has suddenly made a wireless connection!
And, opening up firefox it gets an internet connection!!!!!

I have done nothing other than run lspci and dmesg.
Will it last? It connected erratically before so I am not confident that this is fixed....
Guy
 
Old 12-18-2008, 04:54 PM   #25
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as you know you are using a paid for operating system own by microsoft and novell. and suse is the linux distro. I do not know if you bought it or not I do not care but here is there sight on how to get it going. for hp suse. you will find it is not a free software and I do not mean as money I mean it as the GNU. There are a lot of us here that can help but I stick with software that is not in a prison. here is the link.
http://www.linuxplanet.com/linuxplanet/reviews/6139/3/
this page has all the links to your Module driver what ever. and the how twos step by step.
 
Old 12-18-2008, 05:28 PM   #26
ddclutch
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Drakeo View Post
as you know you are using a paid for operating system own by microsoft and novell. and suse is the linux distro. I do not know if you bought it or not I do not care but here is there sight on how to get it going. for hp suse. you will find it is not a free software and I do not mean as money I mean it as the GNU. There are a lot of us here that can help but I stick with software that is not in a prison. here is the link.
http://www.linuxplanet.com/linuxplanet/reviews/6139/3/
this page has all the links to your Module driver what ever. and the how twos step by step.
Thanks for that link Draeko. That is the process I was heading towards ( using ndiswrapper and a non-Linux driver) that others have already been helping with with more up to date info.
But just this evening it seems to have suddenly made a wireless connection without help, although I am not sure that this will class as a permanent "fix". The only thing is that I used it for a while earlier today on an ethernet cable which I bought in order to temporarily side-step the wireless link to my router.

I don't really understand your reference to the OS being owned by microsoft?? I am using SLED and it came pre-loaded on a brand new hp machine that I bought with hard earned cash just a month ago. Neither the supplier or hp tech support have been of any help at all! I have had much more helpful guidance here and on other forums.

Guy
 
Old 12-19-2008, 08:31 AM   #27
Hangdog42
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Quote:
as I have been typing this on my old Dell laptop next to the hp 2133 it has suddenly made a wireless connection!
And, opening up firefox it gets an internet connection!!!!!
That distant banging noise you hear is me slamming my head into my desk......

If you didn't do anything else, that means that your system has used the wl driver to grab an internet connection. I guess that if you leave it to its own devices long enough, it will figure out what it is doing. It also suggests that you have a 4312 in the system despite what lspci says. Either that or wl actually works with a 4310 and Broadcom just isn't owning up to the fact. I think I need an analgesic.

Quote:
when I ran dmesg I get:
ethl: Broadcom BCM4315 802.11 Wireless Controller 4.170.77.6
OK, this is weird. I just looked at the dmesg on my rig with a 4312 and it has the same output. I'm starting to wonder if lspci isn't being fooled somehow.


Quote:
against wl: I get no version for "struct_module" found: kernel tainted.
and: module not supported by Novell, setting U taint flag.
That is a pretty normal message when you use closed-source drivers. Basically it is the kernel complaining that you don't have a pure open source system. It doesn't have any performance or function implications though.
Quote:
the final line says:
ethl (WE) : Driver using old /proc/net/wireless support, please fix driver !
Can I ask what kernel version you're using? I did some googling on this error and it was common several years ago but there isn't much lately.



Quote:
I don't really understand your reference to the OS being owned by microsoft??
Novell and Microsoft struck a deal where there are payments to cover the Microsoft "intellectual property" that Microsoft claims is in Linux. Pretty much everyone else told Microsoft that unless they specified what intellectual property they were talking about, they could go pound sand. So Suse is the only distro that pays Microsoft.
 
Old 12-19-2008, 09:53 AM   #28
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If you need an analgesic - think how I feel!! I am currently hanging from the ceiling!!

I did NOT make any changes. It just started working. The only thing that might have had some influence is that I had left it plugged into an ethernet connection to the router for some while. Maybe it taught itself something but that seems too much like voodoo to me!

But don't worry Hangdog, today it is back to the normal of just not working.

I thought I posted the kernal version number earlier. but it is 2.6.16.
Yes, 16!! and a brand new machine. Why SLED have used such an old kernal version I do not know. I am considering scrapping this distro and installing ubuntu to see if that copes better. Except that if it is a card / driver problem I may be no better off.

There are comments that the BCM4310 (rev02) works with b43, but the (rev 01) doesn't. Mine of course is the rev 01.

When it did work it showed wl as Active in the GUI. I don't understand but is there a registry key somewhere (sorry, is my MS background showing?) that tells the driver to become Active? maybe it is set wrong?

Guy
 
Old 12-19-2008, 12:03 PM   #29
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Quote:
I thought I posted the kernal version number earlier. but it is 2.6.16.
Yes, 16!! and a brand new machine. Why SLED have used such an old kernal version I do not know.
Yeah, that kernel may be a touch old for what you need. Wireless has been changing a LOT over the past few kernel versions.

What you are seeing with SLED is the stable end of the never-ending stable vs. cutting edge argument. A distro like SLED purposely lags well behind for the reason that SLED is intended for company enterprise use. To be honest, it is a poor choice for a laptop (as would Red Hat Enterprise/CentOS).
Quote:
I am considering scrapping this distro and installing ubuntu to see if that copes better. Except that if it is a card / driver problem I may be no better off.
I would actually suggest that you switch distros. Look at it this way, you would be no worse off. Ubuntu is a much more cutting edge distro and stands a better chance of handling your hardware than a conservative distro like SLED. You probably wouldn't be able to get help from HP if you switch, but from what you've said, that would be no loss. If you want to stick with Suse, look at openSuse, which is much more cutting edge than SLED (it effectively is the testing branch for SLED).

Quote:
When it did work it showed wl as Active in the GUI. I don't understand but is there a registry key somewhere (sorry, is my MS background showing?) that tells the driver to become Active? maybe it is set wrong?
Linux doesn't have anything like the registry (well, Gnome kind of does, but that doesn't come into play here). To be honest, I'm not sure I could give a reasonable explanation for what you saw. At least on my rigs, drivers either work or they don't.

Again, I think that SLED is part of the problem here and you would be better served by a more cutting edge distro like Ubuntu. Worst case is Ubuntu doesn't work either and you just re-install SLED.
 
Old 12-20-2008, 05:18 AM   #30
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Don't know if this helps, but I could get my wireless working for SuSE 11.1 through following the instructions at
linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/b43#devicefirmware

I am using the plain b43 kernel module and after installing the firmware ( and a reboot ) I could connect to my wireless WPA encrypted network

A hint might be if you see
> iwlist scan
returning actual networks.

Next for me is mousepad(scroll) and gfx.

Varol
Ps. I am about to put together a howto for SuSE 11.1.
 
  


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