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D-Link DWA 552 chipset AR5008 (AR5416) wireless problems & solution in Ubuntu (Mint) using Ndiswrapper/madwifi/ath9k driver

Posted 08-02-2008 at 12:44 AM by awong

I'm suspecting that my problems may be due to the updates to the madwifi trunk breaking compatibility with the AR5008/AR5416 chipset, and not because of Ubuntu/Mint Hardy Heron. And yes, my wireless works fine under Windows XP.

I've noticed in the madwifi tickets that AR5008/AR5416 wireless was functioning and had been broken in the past due to updates but the regressions were fixed. Also, in my previous install on 2008.06.22, my D-Link DWA-552 was working with wireless G with Linux Mint 4 (Ubuntu Gutsy) and the madwifi drivers. Also, I connected with the Gnome Network Manager, but I do find that wicd remembers WAP2 passwords even if connections don't occur.

So far I've been able to see my WAP2 protected D-Link DIR-655 router - receive transmissions - but not able to send any data, i.e., trying to connect to the router. I suspect that if I find a snapshot close to the date where I or others got their wifi working, I will be in business. Unfortunately, I've messed up my kernel and it's refusing to install the ath0 drivers (possibly due to compiling older madwifi snapshots over newer ones) so I'm going to reinstall Gutsy (Mint 4). I may also try this with Hardy Heron, since I recall others had it working in that and in other distros; see If I have any success, I'll report back.

DWA-552 reported working from various sources (googled)
r3123 - ubuntu 7.10 - by Komadyret
r3620 - ubuntu 8.04 x86_64, Gentoo - madwifi
r3658 - ubuntu 8.04 x86_64, Gentoo - madwifi

madwifi trunk snapshots for compiling into the kernel:

madwifi D-Link compatibility page (DWA-552):

zeesson's instructions on how to connect the DWA-552 with the madwifi drivers:
Mint forum:
Ubuntu forum (archived but more replies):

20080726 *Update*

Great news! Atheros has released free linux drivers for 802.11n devices. Supported chips will include:

* AR5418+AR5133
* AR5416+AR5133
* AR5416+AR2133
* AR9160
* AR9280
* AR9281

The news on the madwifi site:

More info:

I guess I can rest easy tonight knowing that this is being developed with Atheros!

20080801 *Update #2*

Tutorial of how to install the ath9k drivers (I have not been able to successfully compile the kernel to work with the ath9k drivers, yet):
The driver will be embedded in either the .27 or .28 kernel, so if I can't get this working, hopefully I won't have to wait too long...

20080813 *Update #3*

After many attempts at compiling the latest ath9k drivers into a newer kernel (and loading up a new linux OS several times), I have gone back to my tried and trusty Mint 4 (gutsy) setup. The ath9k drivers are still new and buggy anyways. For the past few days I had been using wired and sadly reading DWA-552 success stories with older madwifi drivers and Ndiswrapper. Then it occurred to me - try out a newer version of Ndiswrapper! Using the info from:
I unload the older 1.43 version and loaded the 1.53 version, used the net5416.inf from the cd's drivers, and voila, WAP2 connection (as I am posting this)! I will report back later to see if this connection is stable, as I have read that others have had their connections drop out after a few hours. Initially, my madwifi setup had become unstable after several weeks of use (I can't repeat this since I can no longer get madwifi working with my DWA-552).

20080814 *Update #4 - SUCCESS!!!*

Egads! I was able to successfully compile the ath9k driver using Kevmitch's Debian instructions (slightly modified for Linux Mint 4/Ubuntu Gutsy). I'm experiencing the 1 Mbps bug, but my D-Link DWA-552 is working with the ath9k driver. Right now the connection speed seems similar to the ndiswrapper 1.53 and madwifi (when it was working) connection that I have experienced, but I'm sure that will change as the driver is improved. I haven't tested how stable it is yet. Thanks to all for their efforts to get this driver functioning.

Now I have this hybrid Mint 4 (Ubuntu Gutsy) OS - if I could only figure out how I messed up the sound settings and screen resolution...
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