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Getting Your Linksys Wireless Adapter Working On Ubuntu or Mint

I got my Linksys wireless adapter working on Ubuntu and LinuxMint using the native Linux drivers (without resorting to ndiswrapper).  I have a Linksys WPC54G pcmcia adapter in my laptop.  When I installed Ubuntu or Mint, or OpenSUSE or many others, my wireless card didn't work.  Searching online lead me to the Ubuntu documentation that shows how to install ndiswrapper, which is a module that then allows you to load the Microsoft Windows drivers for your card.

That worked OK, and I ran ndiswrapper for a while.  Then I noticed that I was having some instability, especially after I upgraded to the latest versions of the Linux kernel, and as I tried different things to find a fix, I came to the conclusion that ndiswrapper was the culprit.  So I went back to searching for a way to get my wireless card to work without ndiswrapper, using native Linux drivers.  Turns out it was easy.

Many Linksys cards (and other brands as well) use the Broadcom B43 chipset, but the version of the hardware isn't quite compatible with the firmware that comes with current Linux distros.  Luckily, there's a B43 firmware update available.  To install it, get connected to a wired connection, open a terminal and type these commands:

sudo apt-get update
sudo apt-get install firmware-b43-installer

Bada bing!  The wireless card comes on-line.  Now, if you haven't done it already, right-click the network icon in the menu panel, and select "Edit Connections".  Click the Wireless tab, and add a connection (or edit the existing one).  Enter the SSID of your wireless network and enter your security key, and you should be good to go!

5 comments:

Anonymous said...

Actual command is suppose to be the following:
sudo apt-get install firmware-b43-installer

Brian said...

Duh! Of course it is :)

Anonymous said...

Thanks a lot. works like a charm !

Ann S. O. said...

your the man...

Anonymous said...

Thanks it worked...

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