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Monday, April 19, 2010

Wireless networking in Ubuntu

I found an interesting website with additional information about Lynksys networking cards in Ubuntu:

Linux wireless Hardware wireless supprted cards
and
Linux USB wireless sticks
Linux ubuntu hardware
Ununtu Help
WPA information
WICD alternative network manager
9lives
ubuntuforums
rfswitch.sourceforge
In Ubuntu 9.10 the standard GNOME network-manager doesn´t work very easily with wifi networks that are WPA encrypted. In Ubuntu 10.4 everything worked just out of the box.

Read my story here:

I got a Linksys WPC300N PCMCIA network card in my old laptop. It is working in Ubuntu 9.10 with the build in driver, but only after I did some finetuning. My version is 2 and uses an Atheros chipset. The linux driver is the Ath9k driver thats loaded automatically with the Kernel.

First type in a console: lspci
Your network card should be mentioned. That means the hardware is accepted.
Mine says
20.00.0 network controller Atheros Communications Inc. AR5008 Wireless Network Adapter

now type lshw
It should write down tour networkcards. In the *network section look for Wireless interface Look for a line containing
configuration: ..... driver=ath9k ....

If this is the same with your system, you know that the hardware is seen and the appropriate driver is loaded.
If it doesn´t, you should google the internet about ndiswrapper

In my system I made a connection in the network applet by filling in the WPA key. I discovered that the key shouldn'tbe too long. Mine is ten characters now.

Then the connection still didn't work, allthough I could see the available networks in the air. Then I read a posting saying that this device shouldn't be unmanaged. This happens when you have it configured in /etc/network/interfaces and use Network-Manager in unmanaged mode.
I read suggestions to change managed=false to managed=true in
/etc/NetworkManager/nm-system-settings.conf .
If that doesnt help, try to remove your configurations from
/etc/network/interfaces and let NetworkManager manage your connection
in the good old way.
(To edit these config files I start from a terminal gksu gedit (or kdesu kate))

This latter option worked for me after I simply renamed /etc/network/interfaces to /etc/network/interfaces.backup, but the connection isn't stable. The first evening it worked all fine. The next day it didn't. The system starts reconnecting.
Then I did something very different. I installed wicd. just look for it in synaptic.
technical information of this program can be read on sourceforge: wicd
Installing wicd will remove the standard GNOME network manager, but it works like a charm on my machine.

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