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Thread: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

  1. #1
    Join Date
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    Ubuntu 13.10 Saucy Salamander

    Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    Problem in Precise Pangolin 12.04 with the Broadband 43xx Wireless Card: Unable to download firmware for wireless. (Also works for 11.10, 11.04, 10.10 and 10.04)

    From the 'Additional Drivers' section:

    This package contains Broadcom 802.11 Linux STA wireless driver for use with Broadcom's BCM4311-, BCM4312-, BCM4313-, BCM4321-,BCM4322-, BCM43224-, and BCM43225-, BCM43227- and BCM43228-basedhardware.
    Possible Solutions:

    Solution 1: After installing with the alternate cd, I needed a cable and after updating, I was able to download the STA driver through the 'Additional Drivers' section.

    Solution 2: Another option is here.

    Solution 3: System > Administration > Synaptic Package Manager > Search: firmware-b43-lpphy-installer > Click Mark > Click install > Close (This has been removed starting with 11.10 - Oneiric Ocelot. It may be installed with the Ubuntu Software Manager.)

    Kontza found the solution (post #3), so thank him for it.

    This solution fixed this problem on my Dell Inspiron 1545 with a Broadcom 4312 card. (Card Tech Specs: 0c:00.0 Network controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11b/g LP-PHY (rev 01))

    Note: For 12.04 and earlier models, the original postings are here.
    Last edited by Sef; December 1st, 2012 at 03:38 PM. Reason: Made Sticky.
    Learning is not attained by chance, it must be sought for with ardor and attended to with diligence. Abigail Adams ( 1744 - 1818 ), 1780;

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  2. #2
    Join Date
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    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    Hi,

    I recently updated my 11 year old daughter's laptop (a hand-me-down Dell Inspiron 1501 she uses to help with her schoolwork) from lubuntu 12.04 to lubuntu 12.10.

    Everything seemed to go OK except wifi no longer works.

    Previously, I believe I needed to blacklist the ssb and b44 drivers and to enable the b43 driver, to match her wifi-only usage pattern. I recall seeing a post somewhere that said there was some sort of incompatibility between the b43 and (ssb+b44) combination - they should not be loaded in the same session. In any case, it worked in lubuntu 12.04

    After the lubuntu upgrade, there seems to be a link now between b43 and ssb. See example session below, where you can see that there is a new ssb_hcd driver that seems to be needed for b43, but it also brings the full ssb along too

    Code:
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  1 ssb_hcd
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb_hcd
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    
    $ sudo modprobe b43
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  2 ssb_hcd,b43
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r b43
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  1 ssb_hcd
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb_hcd
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb
    $ sudo modprobe b43
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  2 ssb_hcd,b43

    Here is the output of sudo lsh -C network (with b43 and b44 enabled)

    Code:
    $ sudo lshw -C network
      *-network               
           description: Network controller
           product: BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN
           vendor: Broadcom Corporation
           physical id: 0
           bus info: pci@0000:05:00.0
           version: 01
           width: 32 bits
           clock: 33MHz
           capabilities: pm msi pciexpress bus_master cap_list
           configuration: driver=b43-pci-bridge latency=0
           resources: irq:18 memory:d0200000-d0203fff
      *-network UNCLAIMED
           description: Ethernet controller
           product: BCM4401-B0 100Base-TX
           vendor: Broadcom Corporation
           physical id: 0
           bus info: pci@0000:08:00.0
           version: 02
           width: 32 bits
           clock: 33MHz
           capabilities: pm cap_list
           configuration: latency=64
           resources: memory:d0300000-d0301fff
      *-network DISABLED
           description: Wireless interface
           physical id: 1
           logical name: wlan0
           serial: 00:19:7d:35:be:19
           capabilities: ethernet physical wireless
           configuration: broadcast=yes driver=b43 driverversion=3.5.0-18-generic firmware=666.2 link=no multicast=yes wireless=IEEE 802.11bg
    Note that the last
    DISABLED
    block disappears if b43 is not enabled. The first block mentions b43-pci-bridge which is not recognised by modprobe. Interestingly, the last block has a serial that looks like a MAC address (of the Broadcom BCM4311 card?), the first one does not. Perhaps some combination of these blocks would be enough to get it working, but I've had no success so far with this.

    I have noticed the wifi indicator light on the laptop case flash on briefly (< 1 second) when the laptop boots up.

    I should mention the laptop has an F2 hotkey, which in its past Windows XP life, caused wifi to toggle on/off, but lubuntu does not seem to recognise it.

    If I could get it to boot with wifi enabled, that would be great. As administrator, I am happy to enable a wired connection if necessary, but for obvious reasons I would prefer not to give extra privileges (e.g., to run modprobe) to my daughter.

    I would be very grateful for any advice on how to resolve the issue- I have spent several fruitless hours trying various 'fixes' suggested in this and other forums

  3. #3
    Join Date
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    Location
    Southeast US
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    Distro
    Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot

    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    Before either of us get too excited, I have not yet upgraded from Precise and have a different network card. That said, here is a bit of (somewhat) useful information that I've found so far today.

    Impatient Executive version:
    Try installing the Broadcom-STA driver (wl) via these instructions:
    HTML Code:
    <a href="http://wiki.debian.org/wl"> Debian Wiki on WiFi using Broadcom driver </a>
    OK, let's hope you're not too impatient just in case I'm wrong about the above.

    More Detailed version:

    Reference 1:
    HTML Code:
    <a href="https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WifiDocs/Driver/bcm43xx#Installing%20STA%20drivers"> Reference 1 </a>
    Reference 2:
    HTML Code:
    <a href="https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/b43-fwcutter/+bug/651010"> Reference 2 </a>
    According to the Ubuntu Docs (Reference 1) you (BCM4311) and I (BCM4312) should be using the 'wl' driver which *does* instruct the blacklisting of ssb and others, as I recall. I say this because I'm currently using a different driver but I've used the 'wl' (broadcom-sta) driver in the past with great success. But somewhere I got steered away from it on this card because it is one of the 'low power' cards.

    Care to share your lspci information? Here's mine:

    Code:
    $ lspci -vvnn|grep 14e4
    yields:
    Code:
    0b:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11b/g LP-PHY [14e4:4315] (rev 01)
    For me, the "LP-PHY" means (from some source) that I should use the following (from dpkg):
    b43-fwcutter install
    firmware-b43-lpphy-installer install

    This is in agreement with what I found earlier in the thread (actually, the original post):
    "Had the same problem, then I noticed that instead of firmware-b43-installer I had to install (manually, via synaptic) firmware-b43-lpphy-installer." --Kontza in LaunchPad.
    HTML Code:
    <a href="https://bugs.launchpad.net/ubuntu/+source/b43-fwcutter/+bug/651010" Ref 2 </a>
    (Reference 2)

    But also see (again, from the original post):
    HTML Code:
    <a href="https://help.ubuntu.com/community/WifiDocs/Driver/bcm43xx#Installing%20STA%20drivers" Ref 1 </a>
    (Reference 1)

    I think our situations are sufficiently different that what I'm currently using is not your solution despite Mr. Konza's expert advice (which applies to me). I am much more familiar with the Debian advice as that is what I've used in the past for some really old hardware using a PCMCIA wifi card (Linksys, I think, but a Broadcom chipset nonetheless).

    Care to share what you've tried that hasn't worked?

    General comment: This thread started over two years ago. 62 pages is quite a lot and I won't read all of them unless I'm stuck on an elevator and the rest of the Internet is down. :^)


    Quote Originally Posted by dm_research View Post
    Hi,

    I recently updated my 11 year old daughter's laptop (a hand-me-down Dell Inspiron 1501 she uses to help with her schoolwork) from lubuntu 12.04 to lubuntu 12.10.

    Everything seemed to go OK except wifi no longer works.

    Previously, I believe I needed to blacklist the ssb and b44 drivers and to enable the b43 driver, to match her wifi-only usage pattern. I recall seeing a post somewhere that said there was some sort of incompatibility between the b43 and (ssb+b44) combination - they should not be loaded in the same session. In any case, it worked in lubuntu 12.04

    After the lubuntu upgrade, there seems to be a link now between b43 and ssb. See example session below, where you can see that there is a new ssb_hcd driver that seems to be needed for b43, but it also brings the full ssb along too

    Code:
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  1 ssb_hcd
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb_hcd
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    
    $ sudo modprobe b43
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  2 ssb_hcd,b43
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r b43
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  1 ssb_hcd
    
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb_hcd
    $ sudo modprobe -r ssb
    $ sudo modprobe b43
    
    $ lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb_hcd                12749  0 
    ssb                    50087  2 ssb_hcd,b43

    Here is the output of sudo lsh -C network (with b43 and b44 enabled)

    Code:
    $ sudo lshw -C network
      *-network               
           description: Network controller
           product: BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN
           vendor: Broadcom Corporation
           physical id: 0
           bus info: pci@0000:05:00.0
           version: 01
           width: 32 bits
           clock: 33MHz
           capabilities: pm msi pciexpress bus_master cap_list
           configuration: driver=b43-pci-bridge latency=0
           resources: irq:18 memory:d0200000-d0203fff
      *-network UNCLAIMED
           description: Ethernet controller
           product: BCM4401-B0 100Base-TX
           vendor: Broadcom Corporation
           physical id: 0
           bus info: pci@0000:08:00.0
           version: 02
           width: 32 bits
           clock: 33MHz
           capabilities: pm cap_list
           configuration: latency=64
           resources: memory:d0300000-d0301fff
      *-network DISABLED
           description: Wireless interface
           physical id: 1
           logical name: wlan0
           serial: 00:19:7d:35:be:19
           capabilities: ethernet physical wireless
           configuration: broadcast=yes driver=b43 driverversion=3.5.0-18-generic firmware=666.2 link=no multicast=yes wireless=IEEE 802.11bg
    Note that the last block disappears if b43 is not enabled. The first block mentions b43-pci-bridge which is not recognised by modprobe. Interestingly, the last block has a serial that looks like a MAC address (of the Broadcom BCM4311 card?), the first one does not. Perhaps some combination of these blocks would be enough to get it working, but I've had no success so far with this.

    I have noticed the wifi indicator light on the laptop case flash on briefly (< 1 second) when the laptop boots up.

    I should mention the laptop has an F2 hotkey, which in its past Windows XP life, caused wifi to toggle on/off, but lubuntu does not seem to recognise it.

    If I could get it to boot with wifi enabled, that would be great. As administrator, I am happy to enable a wired connection if necessary, but for obvious reasons I would prefer not to give extra privileges (e.g., to run modprobe) to my daughter.

    I would be very grateful for any advice on how to resolve the issue- I have spent several fruitless hours trying various 'fixes' suggested in this and other forums
    --
    System76 Gazelle Professional (gazp6)

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
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    9

    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.04 - Precise Pangolin)

    Thanks @HunkirDowne!

    I will take a look again at those references and will report back.

    I did look at them before (when I installed 12.04) but I think I reverted to the b43 driver at the time (can't remember the reason why...).

    However, it is possible that the Broadcom wl driver would work with 12.10 - definitely worth a try

    Thank you.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2010
    Beans
    9

    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.04 - Precise Pangolin)

    Unfortunately, the problem is still there...

    Firstly, here is the output of lspci, as requested by @HunkirDowne:

    Code:
    $ sudo lspci -vvnn | grep 14e4
    05:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Broadcom Corporation BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN [14e4:4311] (rev 01)
    08:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Broadcom Corporation BCM4401-B0 100Base-TX [14e4:170c] (rev 02)
    As you can see, there is no reference to LPPHY (so I did not follow the rest of @HunkirDowne's suggestions).

    I followed the advice in one of the suggested references
    in particular the "STA - Internet Access" > "11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot) - 12.10 (Quantal Quetzal)".

    Because b44 depends on ssb, I needed to add that to the modprobe -r line.

    When wl is enabled, it seems to bring in ssb and b44

    Code:
    $ sudo modprobe -r b43 b44 ssb wl
    $ sudo lsmod | grep ssb
    $ sudo modprobe wl
    $ sudo lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb                    50087  1 b44
    I found the webpage that suggested that the ssb driver is not compatible with wl:

    On that page, there is a section "Remove any other drivers for the Broadcom wireless device." which mentions b43, ssb, etc. The recommended approach is to rmmod the incompatible drivers. I tried this, ran modprobe wl again and, you guessed it, they were back in the list of modules returned by lsmod!

    The other thing I tried was to add the problematic drivers (b43 b44 ssb, etc) to /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist.conf and rebooted. Again, the b44, ssb and wl modules were loaded.

    Then I thought that maybe there is an explicit reload of these modules that happens after processing the blacklist file. I checked /etc/modules and the only uncommented line was
    lp
    which I assume enables printing, but seems to be "safe".

    At the moment, I am beginning to suspect there is a bug somewhere in the wifi setup in 12.10 - it probably does not help that both cards are Broadcom and may share driver features. I would have given up long ago if I did not know that wifi was working in 12.04 and I am reasonably certain that the "fix" involved 'disabling' b44 and ssb.

    Lastly, if it helps understanding, to access the internet when both Broadcom cards are inoperable, I use a tethered 3G connection (to check advice pages), but that's not a practical solution in the long term given the intended use of the laptop.

    Quote Originally Posted by dm_research View Post
    Thanks @HunkirDowne!

    I will take a look again at those references and will report back.

    I did look at them before (when I installed 12.04) but I think I reverted to the b43 driver at the time (can't remember the reason why...).

    However, it is possible that the Broadcom wl driver would work with 12.10 - definitely worth a try

    Thank you.

  6. #6
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
    Beans
    5

    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.04 - Precise Pangolin)

    I have got the same problem with 12.10.
    To note : during installation of 12.10, and for some time after installation, Wifi worked nicely. It seems to me that it stopped working after a kernel update (3.5.0-18, a second update 3.5.0-19 did not improve anything wrt this problem).

  7. #7
    Join Date
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    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.04 - Precise Pangolin)

    Quote Originally Posted by dm_research View Post
    When wl is enabled, it seems to bring in ssb and b44

    Code:
    $ sudo modprobe -r b43 b44 ssb wl
    $ sudo lsmod | grep ssb
    $ sudo modprobe wl
    $ sudo lsmod | grep ssb
    ssb                    50087  1 b44
    .....

    At the moment, I am beginning to suspect there is a bug somewhere in the wifi setup in 12.10 - it probably does not help that both cards are Broadcom and may share driver features. I would have given up long ago if I did not know that wifi was working in 12.04 and I am reasonably certain that the "fix" involved 'disabling' b44 and ssb.
    If you have a b44 ethernet card then you have these lines in /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-bcm43.conf

    Code:
    blacklist b44
    install wl modprobe -r b43 b44 b43legacy ssb; modprobe --ignore-install wl $CMDLINE_OPTS; modprobe --ignore-install b44
    So when you modprobe wl, it automatically modprobes b44 too. Play around with this line and see if removing the "modprobe --ignore-install b44" fixes the problem. If it does then you need to raise a bug.

    P.S. It is easy to miss new posts in sticky threads and this is why they sometimes don't get replies. It is much better to create a new thread with your problem. Then people with the same problem can easily find it, rather than wading through a 63 page thread (and if you want to be super helpful, update the community wiki page!).

  8. #8
    Join Date
    Mar 2008
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    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    Thanks to Sef for creating this new thread for Quantal Qetzal.

    On the french Ubuntu forum, somebody claimed that the problem - which apparently came along with a kernel update 3.5.0-18 - could be solved by installing kernel 3.6.
    Did anybody try that ?

  9. #9
    Join Date
    Dec 2007
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    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    3.6 didn't solve it.

    It seems the install uses wl0 and works just fine but when installed its trying to use brcmsmac and it just doesn't work for me.

  10. #10
    Join Date
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    Re: Solution to Broadcom 43xx Card Problem (12.10 - Quantal Quetzal)

    To confirm I had to install dkms and bcmwl-kernel-source and wireless is fine.

    Now just to sort out my Atheros driver ...alx is it ?

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