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Having trouble installing a piece of hardware? Want to know if that peripheral is compatible with Linux?
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Heh, because I copied and pasted from your post, I replicated your error (corrected now). dpkg does not take the "install" argument like the apt tools, just use the "-i" option alone (for more info see the man page).
Download the following packages from the squeeze-backports repo:
$ cd Downloads
# dpkg -i linux-image-3* initramfs-tools_0.99* firmware-realtek_0.36*
Well dpkg doesn't do dependency resolution, so if you installed initframfs-tools first and then the other two, all should have been well. Jumping to another distro at the first sign of trouble seems a bit much. Besides you could have upgraded to or just installed wheezy as easily. Anyway good luck with whichever path you choose.
Distribution: Debian Sid AMD64, Raspbian Wheezy, various VMs
Why not just install Wheezy now? Installing another distro for a week or two rather than wheezy because the latter has a couple of bugs you will not likely even encounter seems a little odd. You do realise that once the bugs are squashed a simple apt-get update would fix them, don't you?