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Old 10-09-2005, 07:35 PM   #1
CragStar
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Mandriva 2006 madwifi and WPA-PSK problems


Apologies in advance for the long thread

This is going to keep me up all night, so I had better solve it quickly!

I've just installed MDV2006 onto my laptop. It is a very good distro, possibly the best Mandriva one I have used, expect for the problem I have configuring it to connect to my wireless network.

I have a netgear WG511T pcmcia card that uses the madwifi driver. The card is detected okay, all madwifi modules load fine, and the card appears to be working. The wireless network is fine, with 2 windows xp machines connecting to it and working, as did my linux laptop and the pcmcia card until I installed MDV2006.

The problem is when I am configuring it to use WPA-PSK. I use the GUI tool netplugd and 'Manage Wireless Networks', it finds my wireless network. I goto configure and type in my passphrase in ascii but when clicking on connect nothing happens. The card remains scanning and trying to associate with nothing. No matter how many times I click connect, or restart the interface it will not associate.

The operating mode is set to Managed, I have tried Auto but that makes no difference. Roaming does not work with the madwifi driver on the WG511T card so again no joy. The /etc/wpa_supplicant file contains my SSID and passphrase (in ascii).

I'm lost to think what is wrong. I have tried to manually use wpa_supplicant, but that has made no difference. I'm thinking it could be a conflict between iwconfig encryption and wpa_supplicant? I have noticed that in the Mandriva 'Manage Connections' GUI that the encryption key box has
Code:
open s:<my passphrase>
which I think should not be there. However, I found out that it gets in there when I type in my passphrase to use WPA-PSK.

Has anyone come across the above scenario? I would love to know of people who manage to get WPA working in MDV2006.

Any suggestions, no matter how weird, would be appreciated.

Craig
 
Old 10-09-2005, 09:33 PM   #2
CragStar
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Thumbs up ndiswrapper works

Just to update:

I have tried to use ndiswrapper and the latest windows driver from netgear (3.9) which I am happy to say works - so if your having similar problems with madwifi and WPA on MDV2006 it may be worth trying ndiswrapper.

Just a note, according to the ndiswrapper wiki you need a kernel > 2.6.11.7 with no APIC support (can be switched off at boot I presume) otherwise you risk kernel crashes. My laptop hasn't crashed but it has frozen a few times at regular (2 minute) intervals. I haven't turned APIC off yet though.

This is the first time I've used ndiswrapper, and I have to say that it is a much more consistant driver than my madwifi experience's - the card has not dropped connection where as madwifi regularly re-associates during use. Apart from the freezes (where I pull out the card and plug it back in - everything resumes fine) it's absolutely perfect.

I've got a feeling that Mandriva's madwifi RPM was not compiled with WPA support or that WPA support in madwifi is not upto scratch - but I can test that theory tomorrow. At least I can go to sleep now.
 
Old 10-10-2005, 09:29 AM   #3
CragStar
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Thumbs up madwifi working

I must have spent 10 hours looking into this but finally think the problem is solved.

SOLUTION: install wpa_supplicant-0.4.5-1mdk.i586.rpm from the cooker RPMs -

The card can now communicate with the AP in WPA-PSK mode and appears to be working fine. I think the problem is to do with the communication between wpa _supplicant and madwifi. Both worked on their own fine, but when combined there was a problem. I *think* this has something to do with the fact that wpa_supplicant-0.4.4-1mdk was built using an older version of the madwifi drivers than what was released with MDV2006. Either that, or wpa_supplicant-0.4.4 does not work with certain versions of madwifi.

Just for completeness, when running wpa_cli from the command line I was getting a message saying that "Association request to the driver failed" - this lead me to think it was a compatibility problem, and only after checking the changelogs of the wpa_supplicant and dkms-madwifi RPMs (so there IS a reason for changelogs! ) it became obvious the problem could be there.

Either way, the problem is now resolved.
 
Old 10-10-2005, 10:33 AM   #4
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While I haven't updated to 2006 yet, thanks for the great write-up, it'll undoubtedly save a lot of people time and frustration!
 
Old 10-24-2005, 09:37 AM   #5
Matty2k
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Integration of WPA_Supplicant

Hi everybody,

i already tested a Mandriva version before, without integrated wpa_supplicant and I was not able to run my Wireless Card on WPA-PSK (TKIP). I have to say, that I am an absolute beginner on Linux, therefore I have choosen Mandriva 2006 Final. I already did the FTP install and Update from official update Server, everything is working fine, but the WLAN with WPA is STILL a problem.

Now I found this usefull post in here, and just installed the new WPA_Supplicant from a FTP Cooker Source, and it is still not working.
I find the WLAN in my home without problems, it shown when I click on the Taskbar Icon on the right. I can configure it, select WPA type in my Pss, and so on. And go on refresh or connect ... still nothing happens ...

Do I have to integrate the new supplicant? Do I have to create a start entry somewhere? How can I check which version of the supplicant is really installed? It is not shown in the installed packed list ...

best regards

and thanks for any help

Matty

PS: I tried to configure the configfile itself under root, no difference. Always, when I configure the WLAN with the GUI Interface, my WLAN seems to be shown, with signal strength and two keys but the entry I make, WPA, doesnt stay in the config. The SSID, Key is permanent in there, but the encryption method switches always back to WEP .....

PSE Help ;-)

Last edited by Matty2k; 10-24-2005 at 11:47 AM.
 
Old 10-24-2005, 12:31 PM   #6
CragStar
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What make and model of the wireless card you are using, and what driver are you using?

Are you able to get the card working without WPA (i.e. without encryption) setup? If you can, then re-enable WPA and from your machine run the wpa_cli command and post back the output.
 
Old 10-24-2005, 01:53 PM   #7
Matty2k
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WLAN Card

Hi there and thanks for answering,

the card I am using is a integrated WLAN card of a Toshiba Tecra 9000. It is a Agere Intersil Prism2 11 MBits chip ,as it seems. I just saw that i possibly have to install the drivers provided on the Agere webside, they are not compiled for Mandriva, how does that go?
The driver I am using now is a orinoco driver, which was automatically selected during first installation.

When I switch off WPA, the GUI with strength meter (WLAN configureation) shows a green button on the left side, then the normal connection which also appears in the taskbar. I think that should mean = connected, but the connection in the taskbar on the lower right side is still disconnected :-(

When I now reconfigure the other configuration (network configuration) GUI it connects to the WLAN, the strenghmeter in the taskbar is shown correctly!! ????? Why are there two configuration methods ?? That is unlogical to me ....


Which parameter do you want to see with wpa_cli ?

best regards so long

Matty


PS: Does the WPA_Supplicant have a GUI? Does the Window with the strength meter belong to wpa_supplicant?
There also is the old WLAN config GUI, that belongs to good old WLAN Tools, right?

Last edited by Matty2k; 10-24-2005 at 04:14 PM.
 
Old 10-25-2005, 12:20 AM   #8
rshields9093
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I am also struggling with this same problem. The OPer got me one step in the right direction with installing the cooker version of wpa_supplicant. Matty, I think I can get you one more step, and then I hope others will pipe up and help us get the rest of the way. The next step if you use TKIP (like you said you did, and like I do) is to go into your /etc/wpa_supplicant.conf file (as root, of course) and find the section towards the end that describes your home network. Add this line: "group=TKIP", I don't think it matter where you add it as long as it is within the curly braces of that particular network setup.

When I did this I finally could connect to my home WPA-PSK-TKIP home network. But all is not well. While I connect, and properly receive all my info from DHCP, my network does not function. Anything I try just times out without producing any particular error (like host not found, etc.). The output from ifconfig shows that on that interface there are a lot of Rx errors and the frame variable (I have no idea what this is) has the same value as the number of errors I received. This must be a clue, but I haven't deciphered it yet.

Matty, keep me posted on your progress, I will do the same. All others, please help out if you can.

Thanks
 
Old 10-25-2005, 09:18 AM   #9
CragStar
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Exclamation Madwifi specific

The problem I had was madwifi specfic, so I'm not sure whether there is a similar problem with orinocco drivers.
Quote:
When I switch off WPA, the GUI with strength meter (WLAN configureation) shows a green button on the left side, then the normal connection which also appears in the taskbar. I think that should mean = connected, but the connection in the taskbar on the lower right side is still disconnected :-(
Did you remember to re-configure the connection in Mandriva to then not use WPA? Also, it would have taken some time to obtain an IP address (which is really what the icon in the taskbar shows and not the association with the access point - two different things).
Quote:
When I now reconfigure the other configuration (network configuration) GUI it connects to the WLAN, the strenghmeter in the taskbar is shown correctly!! ????? Why are there two configuration methods ?? That is unlogical to me ....
Your right this is confusing and makes no sense to me either, however, what I have found is if you are using the roaming feature (Manage Wireless Networks), make sure you have not entered any details into the normal Mandriva Configure Network window. This caused a few problems for me, such as regular unassociation and wouldn't re-associate without manual intervention, and will almost certainly cause problems for you as well.

When you manage to get the connection working without WPA, re-enable it, make sure the Configure Network settings are blank and use only the Manage Wireless Networks box, entering in your WPA password. Once you have tried this then wpa_cli is your friend. Run wpa_cli as root and then at the next prompt (which looks like >) type
Code:
status
and post back what you get. You can also try running scan to see what it comes back with, although for me this didn't do any good and I ended up losing connection.

Good luck!

Last edited by CragStar; 10-25-2005 at 09:20 AM.
 
  


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