Linux - Wireless NetworkingThis forum is for the discussion of wireless networking in Linux.
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Hello, I just purchased a HP Laptop that has a broadcom wireless card in it. lspci shows "Broadcom Corporation BCM4310 USB Controller". Using Ubuntu Gutsy right now, the card doesn't show up in the Restricted Driver manager. I real quick tried to get ndiswrapper to work, but didn't have luck. It showed the driver was installed, but no hardware present. If any body could help out I would certainly appreciate it.
Before going into ndiswrapper or anything, you need to get the hardware "visible" for the system. As far as I know, having a notorious bcm4318 card, with the newest Ubuntu version (Gutsy) there is no need to manually go trough the ndiswrapper path anymore - in the last version I did have to do that, but with this new one RDM just asked if I wanted to enable it, and after selecting the device and clicking Apply it was working in a moment. Not sure about 4310 exactly, but if it can use fwcutter (for bcm43xx cards), you could just use the native driver and not care about ndiswrapper at all. Because if you do use ndiswrapper anyway, you need to take care that the native driver is blacklisted, or otherwise you won't be able to use the device because two drivers conflict.
How do you know that it is a BCM4310 card?
Make sure that the device is powered on, too. It should be if you haven't unpowered it, but it's always worth it doing the "have you plugged all cables to the wall" -test. So if there is a button somewhere to un/power the card, make certain that it's in the "on" position. You might have a button that doesn't have different "on" and "off" states, but just switches them with one click, and such button won't probably work before you've got drivers loaded..but like I said, try it out.
Then you could read your logfiles at /var/log/, especially boot messages (dmesg is handy too), and try to see if there is an error with the device. If it can be disabled in BIOS, make sure it is not. Usually the hardware "is present"/"visible" and the trouble is with hardware, so this looks odd..but after you find out why it isn't listed, and get it "visible", it shouldn't be a big trouble to get it working. Like I said, I recommend you to use Restricted Drivers Manager over ndiswrapper if you're using Ubuntu anyway - less trouble now and later.
Hello, Thank you for the response. Yeah, I found that odd that RDM didn't pick it up either, from what Ive seen on other laptops, it usually does. This is a brand new laptop, (3 days old) and fired up Vista just to see what it looked like (YUCK!, but won't get into that here). Wireless did work when I fired it up with Windoze. The wierd thing is, this does have a wireless "on/off" switch and a light next to it. Toggling the switch does not turn of the light. Also, the light is light up "orange" now, and when it worked in Vista, it was green. As far as determining the card, I just did, $sudo lspci and it came back with the line from my first post of the 4310. If i can provide any more info that would help, I would be glad to.
The wierd thing is, this does have a wireless "on/off" switch and a light next to it. Toggling the switch does not turn of the light. Also, the light is light up "orange" now, and when it worked in Vista, it was green.
Ok - the light won't come on because there are no drivers loaded, and you can't load them before it's somehow detected. Nice I'm not sure about the color codes, do you happen to have a manual or something that could explain what orange light means?
I found a similar-sounding thread at ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?p=4213173 but for what I can tell, it seems to cover installing ndiswrapper and drivers for it, and not so much getting the hardware visible. Of course it could be that 4310 isn't really supported by bcm43xx native driver (+fwcutter), in which case ndiswrapper would be the way to go. If you want, you could try to follow the procedure there, and see if it makes any difference - if it will, it shows in the "ndiswrapper -l" step after installing the drivers. Note that if you have ndiswrapper and ndiswrapper-utils installed already, you only need to take care of removing the previous drivers, removing (rmmod) bcm43xx just in case and ndiswrapper-installing the new Windows drivers (an .inf and a .sys file, you use the .inf file in the ndiswrapper command).
Yeah, shoot, I just don't know. Ive used ndiswrapper before on other machines and had sucess, but this particular case, it just is not working for me. I install the driver... (bcmwl5.inf) and ndiswrapper -l just shows
bcmwl5 : driver installed
but obviously its missing the "Hardware Present" line. I looked in the BIOS, I don't see any options for wireless in there. Any other ideas?
I just contacted HP support seeing if they could help, but my guess is they will come back saying its only supported in Windows and they can't help. (Hopefully not, but not gonna hold my breath). From what Im reading, I think the orange light on the front just means the card is not connected.
So, in the mean time, I'd still like to try the ndiswrapper deal, but cannot figure out why it shows the driver is installed, but no hardware present. If anybody could help on that issue, I'd greatly appreciate it.
You may want to take a look at this section from ndiswrapper.sourceforge.net. If "lspci" sees it, the system sees it. I am not sure if the driver you are using caused the problem. There are some alternative drivers in the page. Good luck.
Thanks for that little bit of info. I was thinking that driver might have been the issue, but I was trying that sp34152, then when I saw the last post and tried the 33008 hoping that did something different. Same deal, just doesn't show that the hardware is present. The steps Im using are....
Well, thanks everybody for your help. Still couldn't get it to work, so Im guessing that 4310 just won't work at all. I went and bought a Linksys USB wireless card and plugged it in and worked right out of the box. Kinda a bummer I just bought a nice new laptop, and have a big ole' clunky thing hanging off the side of it, but, I guess I'll just hold out for Hardy in about 4 months and pray that has support for this card. Thanks again!
You did remove the previous ndiswrapper drivers prior to trying out a new one, right?
Well good if you have a "backup solution", even if it is a not-so-good-looking one. I would still try some other drivers (maybe from different sites - different driver versions) if possible, and maybe even go as far as taking a look at the very newest ndiswrapper version available, just in case. It very probably means compiling it from source, but if it helps, why not.
Wow casseen, you are my hero!!! Worked like a charm. I had tried every dang driver out there. Obviously not that one I guess. But, thanks again, I was actually working with HP support trying to get a new card placed in this machine. But, will end the support incident, no need as it works great! Thanks again!