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Old 12-08-2012, 07:46 AM   #1
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: UK
Distribution: Fedora Core 3
Posts: 11

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Problem with Broadcom 43 wi-fi card.

I've got a problem with a Broadcom 43 wireless card that is built into my Compaq Presario v5000 series laptop in Linux.

At present it works perfectly with Puppy Linux Slacko 5.3 (October 2011) with Barry's Simple Network Setup tool, it also works fine with the other wireless tools within puppy.

The problem I have is with other larger distributions.

I've tried it with Linux Mint and Linux Slackware 14, Mint can't even find the card. Slackware at first told me networkmanager was not enabled, ok fixed that, but even with that fixed it can see my ethernet network card, and it detects wlan0 as well as a wireless interface, but if I try and scan for SSID's it finds nothing.

Also on my laptop I have a light for wi-fi on/off, in Puppy this works fine, but in Slackware it doesn't. Slackware does appear to be registering when the button is pressed as when I turn it off it won't scan due to hardware being off, it's just obviously not initiating the light for some reason.

I have tried with the wireless.conf files and inet.conf files and tried to find these in Puppy so I could just copy and paste working ones, but can't find these. I have edited them following all instructions and nothing.

Anyone any idea what am I doing wrong?
Old 12-08-2012, 09:51 AM   #2
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Registered: Jul 2005
Location: UK
Distribution: Fedora Core 3
Posts: 11

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Got it working - finally!

Wow - got it working finally.

Tried downloading the "official drivers" from Broadcom and they don't do nothing, don't even compile. Eventually figured out I needed to use b43-fwcutter to install the firmware for this card (why can't Broadcom mention this on their website???)

Followed the instructions here

and downloaded b43-fwcutter from here

Compiled it, installed it, and then run

b43-fwcutter -w /lib/firmware/ wl_apsta_mimo.o

and the good news is it's now working!! Yes!

Don't know why it works under puppy linux straight off - maybe they included the firmware or something in the distribution??

Just thought I'd mention it here so in case anyone else is looking to get one of these cards enabled.

One things for certain though - unless it comes built into the laptop I certainly wouldn't buy another Broadcom adaptor again considering how much they make you do just to get it to work!


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