View Full Version : [ubuntu] Wireless connection: problem with automatic connection on boot-up

June 24th, 2008, 08:53 AM
I recently sought help with wireless connection on a Dell Inspiron 6400 laptop with Gutsy installed via the following thread:

[gnome] Problem with Gutsy wireless setup on a Dell Inspiron 6400 laptop
(see: http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=836069)

This was happily solved by a manual setup guided by the extremely useful post "How To: Manual Network Configuration without the need for Network Manager"
http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=684495 (many thanks, kevdog!!).

However, on editing the /etc/rc.local file to get connection on boot-up, I still had to connect manually. The /etc/rc.local file looks like this (with my encryption key replaced by dashes):

#!/bin/sh -e
# rc.local
# This script is executed at the end of each multiuser runlevel.
# Make sure that the script will "exit 0" on success or any other
# value on error.
# In order to enable or disable this script just change the execution
# bits.
# By default this script does nothing.
ifconfig eth0 down
ifconfig eth1 down
dhclient -r eth1
ifconfig eth1 up
iwconfig eth1 key open
iwconfig eth1 key S:ASCII_KEY ----------
iwconfig eth1 mode Managed
dhclient eth1
exit 0

Any ideas as to the cause of this problem? Alternatively, would it be possible to write a small script file which can be run from a terminal window to do the manual setup in one go?

Any help appreciated!

June 24th, 2008, 12:51 PM

iwconfig eth1 key S:ASCII_KEY ----------

iwconfig eth1 key s:password

password = encryption key in ascii

June 24th, 2008, 09:44 PM
Thanks pokipoki08, I can see the error in my version of the file, and I'm sure yours should work.

Unfortunately the system is now telling me that I have no permission (even as superuser) to modify /etc/rc.local, even though I was able to edit it yesterday (why? what's changed? - I don't understand!?):confused:

June 24th, 2008, 11:03 PM
What does:

ls -la /etc/rc.local


Also if/when you can edit the file, put a sleep 20 prior to your first statement -- this will give networking services possibly some extra time to be brought up and running prior to you passing commands.

June 28th, 2008, 10:57 PM
Thanks for the latest suggestions, kevdog. My problem with editing the /etc/rc.local file was a silly beginner's mistake: not starting with sudo.

This problem has now been overcome. In fact I can now usually get the WiFi connection from boot-up, or if the modem/router service drops out for a while, I can recover it by running a shell script containing essentially the instructions in the /etc/rc.local file.

However, in some sessions I cannot get a WiFi connection at all, even when I know the ethernet output from the router is working. I suspect this is due to poor S/N ratio or low signal strength - in Windows days this was sometimes a problem too - hence not really a software problem. However there was one curious thing I noticed on typing ifconfig as a diagnostic when there was no WiFi connection - here is an example of the response to ifconfig:

eth1 Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:18:DE:94:65:62
RX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:4 overruns:0 frame:0
TX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000
RX bytes:0 (0.0 b) TX bytes:0 (0.0 b)
Interrupt:16 Base address:0x8000 Memory:efdff000-efdfffff

eth1:avah Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:18:DE:94:65:62
inet addr: Bcast: Mask:
Interrupt:16 Base address:0x8000 Memory:efdff000-efdfffff

lo Link encap:Local Loopback
inet addr: Mask:
RX packets:16 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
TX packets:16 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
RX bytes:1520 (1.4 KB) TX bytes:1520 (1.4 KB)

- notice the eth1:avah in the above? I really don't understand what this is telling me.

Thanks again for you help so far. Keep up the good work!