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Old 11-30-2008, 02:21 PM   #1
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Registered: Nov 2008
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Best Wireless Support?

I have a Realtek 8185 wireless card integrated into a Gateway notebook. The only distribution so far, without any assistance from ndiswrapper, that I've gotten to detect and work with my wireless card are the Fedora releases. However, my computer is also a year and a half old, and sometimes certain releases will freeze. Is there a lightweight distribution that has good support for wireless?
Old 11-30-2008, 05:50 PM   #2
Registered: Jan 2004
Distribution: Mac OS X 10.6.4 "Snow Leopard", Win 7, Ubuntu 10.04
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If it works in Fedora without ndiswrapper, then you should be able to get it working in any distribution. From what I gather, the rtl-wifi driver is built into the mainline kernel since 2.6.25.

If you go to distrowatch and look at different distros, scroll to the bottom part of each distro's description page. Look for the "linux" entry and it will tell you which kernel it is using. Over 2.6.25 should work with your card out of the box.

Note: I don't have this card, this is just what I googled and found from
Old 12-01-2008, 06:09 AM   #3
Registered: Jun 2005
Distribution: Puppy, Sabayon
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Originally Posted by Trekky0623 View Post
Is there a lightweight distribution that has good support for wireless?
Puppy is an awesome distro that is very lite @ ~95MB. Puppy runs so it should pick up your wireless no problem.

Just click "Connect" and let the wizard help you.

Puppy is very fast because it is so small it can load completely to RAM and RAM is fast!

It is worth checking out even if you decide on a bigger distro this time.

Make sure to get the right version with the right core. Get the newest 4.1.1 not the retro version....
Old 12-01-2008, 11:32 AM   #4
Registered: May 2005
Posts: 516

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I second that for Puppy. Amazing wireless support for a small distro. Ideal for laptops.

Mandriva/gnome has good wireless support for something heavier.


distribution, fedora, gateway, ndiswrapper, realtek

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