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Old 12-26-2012, 08:24 AM   #1
samhill5215
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Atheros wireless fails to connect


I recently acquired a Toshiba Satellite A205 and I'm having trouble connecting wirelessly. No problems hardwired just wireless. lscpi reveals two ethernet controllers:

Marvell Technology Group Ltd. 88E8039 PCI-E Fast Ethernet Controller (rev 14)
Atheros Communications Inc. AR242x / AR542x Wireless Network Adapter (PCI-Express) (rev 01)

There's lots of information about driver problems between ubuntu and atheros but all remedies apply to older versions and I'm running 12.04lts.Even then there's very little consistensy in the remedies and their success is questionable.

So here's my question. First, which of these two controllers is used in wireless and second, how can I make it work? I've tried setting up the connection with wicd rather than the network manager, I've tried every conceivable encryption for my key, nothing works. What fails is authentication, or at least that's what wicd reports.

Last edited by samhill5215; 12-27-2012 at 04:50 PM.
 
Old 12-26-2012, 12:54 PM   #2
secretservgy
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Quote:
Atheros Communications Inc. AR242x / AR542x Wireless Network Adapter (PCI-Express) (rev 01)
Is your wireless card. Give this a try, I found it elsewhere, open up the modprobe blacklist file:

Code:
sudo gedit /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf
To the end of it, add:

Code:
blacklist acer_wmi
Restart your computer, see how that goes...

EDIT:

Actually, can you pick up wireless? Or is the card not working at all? If it IS WORKING, do not do the above steps. Try this in a terminal (assuming wlan0 is your wifi device),

Code:
 sudo iwconfig wlan0 essid YOUR_NETWORK_NAME enc YOUR_ENCRYPTION_KEY
followed by,

Code:
 sudo dhclient wlan0

Last edited by secretservgy; 12-26-2012 at 12:57 PM.
 
Old 12-27-2012, 07:49 AM   #3
samhill5215
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I've tried both suggestions, no improvement. Your question about whether wireless is working is one I've begun wondering about but how do I know? I've assumed it's ok because wireless fails at the authentication stage. Does that make sense? How would I know for sure? In any case the dhclient command returns nothing, I have to break out of it to get my command line again.
 
Old 12-27-2012, 08:52 AM   #4
rejnex
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This might not be a driver issue, ubuntu does have support for atheros wireless cards. It make use
of the ath5k driver. Your Particular card is supported by that driver

Post the message/error that you get when your wireless fails to connect
 
Old 12-27-2012, 07:51 PM   #5
samhill5215
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I'm pretty sure it's already using ath5k although I couldn't tell you for sure. I've run across it in my efforts and research. This is what's in my syslog that appears relevant. I'm not sure why it's using that netmask or why IPv6 is involved but there it is.

Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba dhclient: Internet Systems Consortium DHCP Client 4.1-ESV-R4
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> dhclient started with pid 5486
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> Activation (wlan0) Beginning IP6 addrconf.
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: Withdrawing address record for fe80::21b:9eff:fe87:58f3 on wlan0.
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: Leaving mDNS multicast group on interface wlan0.IPv6 with address fe80::21b:9eff:fe87:58f3.
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: Interface wlan0.IPv6 no longer relevant for mDNS.
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> Activation (wlan0) Stage 3 of 5 (IP Configure Start) complete.
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> (wlan0): DHCPv4 state changed nbi -> preinit
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba dhclient: Listening on LPF/wlan0/00:1b:9e:87:58:f3
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba dhclient: Sending on LPF/wlan0/00:1b:9e:87:58:f3
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba dhclient: Sending on Socket/fallback
Dec 27 19:53:55 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 3
Dec 27 19:53:57 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: Joining mDNS multicast group on interface wlan0.IPv6 with address fe80::21b:9eff:fe87:58f3.
Dec 27 19:53:57 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: New relevant interface wlan0.IPv6 for mDNS.
Dec 27 19:53:57 toshiba avahi-daemon[674]: Registering new address record for fe80::21b:9eff:fe87:58f3 on wlan0.*.
Dec 27 19:53:58 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 3
Dec 27 19:54:01 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 6
Dec 27 19:54:06 toshiba kernel: [ 4198.640065] wlan0: no IPv6 routers present
Dec 27 19:54:07 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 9
Dec 27 19:54:15 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> (wlan0): IP6 addrconf timed out or failed.
Dec 27 19:54:15 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> Activation (wlan0) Stage 4 of 5 (IPv6 Configure Timeout) scheduled...
Dec 27 19:54:15 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> Activation (wlan0) Stage 4 of 5 (IPv6 Configure Timeout) started...
Dec 27 19:54:15 toshiba NetworkManager[775]: <info> Activation (wlan0) Stage 4 of 5 (IPv6 Configure Timeout) complete.
Dec 27 19:54:16 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 14
Dec 27 19:54:30 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 8
Dec 27 19:54:38 toshiba dhclient: DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 16
 
Old 12-27-2012, 08:13 PM   #6
samhill5215
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By the way this is a new install. It was installed 5 days ago.
 
Old 12-27-2012, 11:38 PM   #7
jschiwal
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If you see Access Points, your wireless device is probably working. But it would be good to check anyway.

Run "sudo /sbin/lspci -v". The last line will tell you the module in use.
Run "modinfo <module>"
Modinfo lists the firmware. Check if these files exist in /lib/firmware/.
The alias: lines contain the manid codes. You can check that it matches the entry from running "lspci -n".

Atheros drivers usually have their firmware supplied by the kernel. Sometimes a kernel is too old, and even the right driver doesn't recognize your device. If the manid code is listed in the modinfo results, then it will. ( This was my problem once with a new netbook that didn't work using the ath9k driver )

Run "sudo /usr/sbin/iwlist scan". Does it list your AP? If using NetworkManager, run "nm-tool".

Try disabling IPV6 support. It may be confusing your router.

Your posting from your log is confusing. The DHCP client runs after authentication. But it is from Avahi which might be retarted. Check for other logs in /var/log. Check for the words "authenticate with" and "associate with" in /var/log/messages. This is for the attempt to join your network. Then if you use DHCP, dhclient obtains the IP, DNS and netmask settings. If WiCD uses dbus to communicate with the desktop, run "dbus-monitor" before trying to authenticate.

Try disconnecting all other devices from the LAN, including wired connections. I had an issue with authentication at home, with all my wireless devices. The problem turned out to be with pulse audio! For a laptop, try connecting to another wireless network. Such as WPA network at work, or a friends house. Try an open WiFi connection at a restaurant or mall.
 
Old 12-28-2012, 06:38 AM   #8
samhill5215
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This is what lspci spits out for my ethernet controller and it is using ath5k.

03:00.0 Ethernet controller: Atheros Communications Inc. AR242x / AR542x Wireless Network Adapter (PCI-Express) (rev 01)
Subsystem: Askey Computer Corp. WLL3141 (Toshiba PA3613U-1MPC) 802.11bg Wireless Mini PCIe Card
Flags: bus master, fast devsel, latency 0, IRQ 17
Memory at f1000000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable) [size=64K]
Capabilities: [40] Power Management version 2
Capabilities: [50] MSI: Enable- Count=1/1 Maskable- 64bit-
Capabilities: [60] Express Legacy Endpoint, MSI 00
Capabilities: [90] MSI-X: Enable- Count=1 Masked-
Capabilities: [100] Advanced Error Reporting
Capabilities: [140] Virtual Channel
Kernel driver in use: ath5k
Kernel modules: ath5k

This is what modinfo ath5k reveals:

filename: /lib/modules/3.2.0-35-generic-pae/kernel/drivers/net/wireless/ath/ath5k/ath5k.ko
license: Dual BSD/GPL
description: Support for 5xxx series of Atheros 802.11 wireless LAN cards.
author: Nick Kossifidis
author: Jiri Slaby
srcversion: FA2500C2D3C1A3B6094E37C
alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000001Dsv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000001Csv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000001Bsv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000001Asv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000019sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000018sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000017sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000016sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000015sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000014sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00001014sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v000010B7d00000013sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000A727d00000013sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000013sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000012sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000011sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000007sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000207sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
depends: mac80211,cfg80211,ath
intree: Y
vermagic: 3.2.0-35-generic-pae SMP mod_unload modversions 686
parm: nohwcryptisable hardware encryption. (bool)
parm: all_channels:Expose all channels the device can use. (bool)
parm: fastchanswitch:Enable fast channel switching for AR2413/AR5413 radios. (bool)

I checked /lib/firmware for anything matching this output and found nothing. The closest was a folder named ath6k but nothing else. Could that be it? The controller is looking for ath5k support where ath6k was installed?

This is what iwlist scan spits out. There are other cells but santa is my home network.

wlan0 Scan completed :
Cell 01 - Address: E0:46:9A:3A:9D:2A
Channel:2
Frequency:2.417 GHz (Channel 2)
Quality=59/70 Signal level=-51 dBm
Encryption keyn
ESSID:"santa"
Bit Rates:1 Mb/s; 2 Mb/s; 5.5 Mb/s; 11 Mb/s; 6 Mb/s
9 Mb/s; 12 Mb/s; 18 Mb/s
Bit Rates:24 Mb/s; 36 Mb/s; 48 Mb/s; 54 Mb/s
Mode:Master
Extra:tsf=0000012331f526cd
Extra: Last beacon: 420ms ago
IE: Unknown: 000573616E7461
IE: Unknown: 010882848B968C129824
IE: Unknown: 030102
IE: Unknown: 0706555320010B1B
IE: Unknown: 2A0100
IE: Unknown: 3204B048606C
IE: Unknown: DD180050F2020101820003A4000027A4000042435E0062322F00
IE: Unknown: DD1E00904C334E111BFF00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000
IE: Unknown: 2D1A4E111BFF00000000000000000000000000000000000000000000
IE: Unknown: DD1A00904C3402051B00000000000000000000000000000000000000
IE: Unknown: 3D1602051B00000000000000000000000000000000000000
IE: Unknown: DD0900037F01010000FF7F
IE: Unknown: DD0A00037F04010002004000
IE: Unknown: DD8E0050F204104A0001101044000102103B0001031047001000000000000010000000E0469A3A9D2A1021000D4E65746765 61722C20496E632E10230009574E523130303076321024000456324831104200046E6F6E651054000800060050F204000110 11001E574E523130303076322D564328576972656C6573732041502D322E344729100800020086103C000103
IE: Unknown: DD050050F20500

I disabled IPv6 by adding the following lines to /etc/sysctl.conf and restarted sysctl with sysctl -p.

# IPv6
net.ipv6.conf.all.disable_ipv6 = 1
net.ipv6.conf.default.disable_ipv6 = 1
net.ipv6.conf.lo.disable_ipv6 = 1

None of this has improved the situation. I searched the other logs for the terms you mentioned and found nothing. /var/log/messages is not active so no postings. I have already tried connecting to other networks. Wired works, wireless doesn't.
 
Old 12-30-2012, 10:22 PM   #9
jschiwal
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It seems that the wireless device is working. For some things you posted, it seems thst you are authenticating as well (DHCP messages).

You might try authenticating manually
http://linux.icydog.net/wpa.php

Try a live disc from another distro. If wireless works then, you know it isn't the device.

If the iwcfg-wlan0 file is used by wicd, post it.
Use "pidof wpasupplicant" to determine its process number. Then determine the full command line with "ps -f <pid>". One of the arguments will be for its config file. Sometimes it's constructed dynamically instead of the one in /etc.

Another thing to try is to shutdown the wired connection before enabling wireless.

Also consider using Ubuntu's network-admin tool instead of wicd.

Last edited by jschiwal; 12-30-2012 at 10:26 PM.
 
  


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