I've had some problems with my laptop. So I decided to bite the bullet and install Slackware 13.0 RC2 x86_64. It's been another experience that does test the old gray matter. Several issues but I'll address the wireless here.
Out of the box, the 'b4401' NIC worked with only having to setup the configuration. BUT, and that's a big but! The bcm4312 on the 'Dell Inspiron 1501 AMD Turionx2' would not initialize. No big deal, I'll just grab a 'slackbuild' package. For now that's not going to happen for the x86_64.
I remembered a faint fact about the broadcom. So off to Broadcom.com
to see if it was true that a driver existed for the x86_64. Well after some tracking I found '802.11 Linux STA driver
' page. On this page you will find the '64-bit driver
' and the '2.6.29 kernel patch
You will also find the new '32-bit driver
' if you might need it for 'x86_32'.
' is fair as a reference to what you need to do concerning the driver. Be sure download all.
Once you have downloaded you will need to create a directory, the txt states to use 'hybrid_wl'. You should 'tar -xzf hybrid-portsrc-x86_64-v5_10_91_9.tar.gz' into that directory or the directory of choice.
Be sure to apply the patch if your using '126.96.36.199'.
excerpt from 'README.txt';
setup the source/hybrid/build directory
1. Create a new directory: mkdir hybrid_wl
2. Go to that directory: cd hybrid_wl
3. Untar the appropriate 32/64 bit file
to that directory
32 bit: tar -xzf <path>/hybrid-portsrc-x86_32-v5_10_91_9.tar.gz
64 bit: tar -xzf <path>/hybrid-portsrc-x86_64-v5_10_91_9.tar.gz
After untar'ing you should have a src and lib sub directory plus a Linux
2.6 "kbuild" external makefile (Makefile). The lib sub directory has the pre-built
You use the standard Linux 2.6 kernel build system as follows to make a Linux loadable
kernel module (LKM):
On the target machine, and cd'ed to the directory that contains the Makefile (fragment)
4. Cleanup (optional): make -C /lib/modules/<2.6.xx.xx>/build M=`pwd` clean
5. Build the LKM, i.e. wl.ko: make -C /lib/modules/<2.6.xx.xx>/build M=`pwd`
You should now have a LKM, wl.ko inside this directory.
... read the rest of the text file for other useful information.
You will notice a 'WARNING' about license but the 'wl.ko' is created.
I've read the EULA/License agreement for Broadcom. No way of getting it for the '802.11 Linux STA driver
'. I've jumped through hoops, sent emails and still can't get a valid include. Go figure!
I'm typing on the Laptop using the new drivers after a lot of fudging around. I really recommend that you use the 'wicd' package for configuration. Be sure to restore your '/etc/rc.inet1.conf' to the original state. Once you have blacklisted the 'b43' and 'ssb' in '/etc/modprobe.conf/blacklist.conf' you should reboot.
Once you are up then from the console as 'root' you can 'wicd-curses' to configure the 'wireless-settings' for 'wireless-settings.conf'. You should be good to go. Of course for those GUI guys/gals you can configure from 'X' with KDE. I'm working from 'KDE' right now. I'll try 'XFCE' later.
I need to get 'ifplugd' to setup the wired that is used for the Laptop when working with clients. Not everyone is un-hooked. Some for security reasons. Others just to cheap.
I've lost a lot of 'Rogaine' hair from this one.