i followed a guide posted here http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=38972
1. start up a root console
2.type: iwconfig ( this will give you your card info and network /wireless info)
3. type: iwconfig ath0 channel 6 ( substitute channel 6 for whichever channel your router is transmitting on)
4. Type: iwlist scan ( this may take a minute, this will give you your routers wireless settings.)
5. Type: iwconfig ath0 essid xxxxxx ( replace xxxxxx with your routers essid)
6. Type: iwconfig ath0 ap xx xx xx xx xx xx( this is the six double digit mac address required and is listed in your iwlist scan message as above.)
7. Type: iwconfig ath0 key XXXXXXXXXX ( replace XXXXXXXX with your own hex wep key )
8. type: dhclient ( this gets your dhcp sorted ) you should now be up and running.
All of the information you need is right on the screen, although you will need to make a note of your wep key from your routers settings, as the output above may list it only as a ******** output .