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Old 10-26-2007, 02:12 PM   #1
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Location: Lexington, KY, US
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bcm43xx: Error: Microcode "bcm43xx_microcode4.fw" not available or load failed

I have just installed Debian etch (only CD1) and am trying to get my Broadcom 4306 wireless card working. From the help gathered from other posts and forums, I have installed bcm43xx-fwcutter. But md5sum check failed when trying to cut wl_apsta.o (which I downloaded manually from because bcm43xx-fwcutter couldn't find it at When I tried the Windows driver bcmwl5.sys instead, I got the following output:

#bcm43xx-fwcutter bcmwl5.sys

filename : bcmwl5.sys
version :
MD5 : 50e009df2dbecf7a53fcefee6b137358
microcodes : 2
pcms : 4

microcode : 2
revision : 0x00d7
patchlevel : 0x0005
date : 2003-03-12
time : 20:04:10

extracting bcm43xx_microcode2.fw ...
extracting bcm43xx_pcm4.fw ...
extracting bcm43xx_initval03.fw ...
extracting bcm43xx_initval01.fw ...

I placed these files in the /lib/firmware and /lib/hotplug/firmware directories. But my wireless still doesn't work as verified from the following output:
# iwlist eth0 scan
eth0 Interface doesn't support scanning : No such device

Other commands
# lsmod|grep bcm
bcm43xx 405920 0
firmware_class 9600 2 pcmcia,bcm43xx
ieee80211softmac 26304 1 bcm43xx
ieee80211 29416 2 bcm43xx,ieee80211softmac

The reason for the failure I think are the following messages I see during bootup:
bcm43xx: Error: Microcode "bcm43xx_microcode4.fw" not available or load failed.
bcm43xx: core_up for active 802.11 core failed (-2)

The cutter only generated bcm43xx_microcode2.fw but no bcm43xx_microcode4.fw. What do you guys suggest I try next.

The card was working previously with Slackware 10 and ndiswrapper before I installed Debian.

Thanks in advance.
Old 10-26-2007, 06:41 PM   #2
Registered: Oct 2006
Location: Scottsdale, Arizona
Distribution: openSUSE 10.2
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I too spent the better part of today trying to get my Dell E1505/6400 laptop wireless card working. It has the Dell 1390 (BCM4311)

I followed this to the tee:

All is working well now. No need to 'blacklist' any drivers or use fwcutter.

Thought this may help some others.

Edit: Sorry I am using Suse 10.3 and not Debian

Last edited by cueman; 10-26-2007 at 06:58 PM.
Old 10-27-2007, 07:27 AM   #3
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Location: Maryland
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Try the wl_apsta.o file I've got on my help site (link in sig). It's worked well for me with bcm43xx and my 4306 chipset. It looks to me like you've got a bad download of wl_apsta.o.



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