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Thread: Broadcom wireless driver installed on Natty but not working

  1. #1
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Broadcom wireless driver installed on Natty but not working

    Broadcom Wireless network controller: BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN [14e4:4311] (rev 01)

    HP 530 notebook computer

    Wireless not working. The network manager applet doesn't even allow me to search for available networks. (Neither does the network manager applet tell me that the reason its not showing networks is because it can't detect the wireless driver. It would be helpful if it did).

    The Broadcom wireless driver
    This was installed by doing the menu System > Administration > Additional Drivers. It tells me it has installed the "Broadcom STA proprietary wireless driver".

    If I type "sudo lshw -C network" in a terminal window it gives me the following information:

    *-network UNCLAIMED
    description: Network controller
    product: BCM4311 802.11b/g WLAN
    vendor: Broadcom Corporation
    physical id: 0
    bus info: pci@0000:10:00.0
    version: 01
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: pm msi pciexpress bus_master cap_list
    configuration: latency=0
    resources: memory:f0000000-f0003fff

    Ubuntu version: Ubuntu 11.04 - the Natty Narwhal

    Request for help
    Can someone please help me get this driver working?

    A tuppeny's worth, as an aside
    HP, one of the largest computer companies in the entire world, released this 530 laptop as some sort of horrible joke, it seems to me. An elderly relative of mine had the misfortune to buy it off someone unscrupulous enough to sell it. It came with Vista. It ran like a over-fed dog on a sunny afternoon. The relative asked for my help. I ended up putting Ubuntu on it. It was like putting the dog down. But the wireless card didn't work. The computer ended up gathering dust. What an utter waste of money. If you look on the forums, you see that these Broadcom network adapters had been a problem for years because they couldn't be bothered to release a linux driver. Broadcom seemed like some fat, lazy dog as well. I hope they get worms and fleas, and that they get old-dog bowel problems in the lobby of HP's corporate headquarters when they go there to gloat over the huge amount of money they made from selling this horrible laptop computer. And so now it seems there is at last a driver. But it doesn't work out of the box. What a surprise. Someone call a vet. Tell them they'll need rubber gloves.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Jun 2012

    Re: Broadcom wireless driver installed on Natty but not working

    Make sure your modem/router driver is installed, be careful of wrong sites. Otherwise obtain a wifi card/usb antenna.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    Fareham, UK

    Re: Broadcom wireless driver installed on Natty but not working

    Hi, plug in an ethernet cable if not already using one.

    Remove the STA Driver this can be done with 'Additional Drivers', just deactivate it.

    Open a terminal type and run these commands.
    sudo apt-get install b43-fwcutter
    sudo apt-get install firmware-b43-installer
    Remove the cable and reboot your machine to complete the removal of the STA driver. Wireless should now be working.

    Post back here with the news.

    Thank you.

  4. #4
    Join Date
    May 2008

    Re: Broadcom wireless driver installed on Natty but not working


    This is brilliant. Thank you westie457. I followed your excellent advice. The wireless on this HP 530 is now working perfectly. Even the blue wireless button is working.

    Seems there is life in the old dog yet. But why oh why oh why could Broadcom and HP not manage to fix it so it simply worked in the first place - or failing that, simply updated and then simply worked - or failing that, fix it so when you discover by chance that they have at last produced a driver and click on the (hidden) button to install it, that it then simply works?

    Tell me if I'm wrong, but I thought this was a fine tradition:

    i) Press button to install driver
    ii) Watch for message saying driver installed
    iii) Use device

    Even that sounds quaintly old-fashioned since the invention of the automatic update.

    What we have instead is:

    i) Press button to install driver
    ii) Watch for message saying driver installed
    iii) Discover driver is not working as advertised
    iv) Spend hours trawling support forums for solution
    v) Blindly follow some arcane instruction that uninstalls the driver and installs something else entirely in its place
    vi) Resolve to make the best of things though a little piece of one's soul has just withered and died
    vii) Use device

    Well done Broadcom and HP!
    Last edited by markling; June 11th, 2012 at 08:11 PM. Reason: Perfectionist

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