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Thread: command-line wireless for minimal install

  1. #1
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
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    3

    command-line wireless for minimal install

    Hello all -

    I am trying to set up wireless on an old Compaq Presario 2100 running 11.10 - since it is an older system, I am trying a command-line based install. So a lot of the GUI-based instructions I have found online don't completely apply.

    Here's what I have found in my searches:

    lspci -vnn
    02:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Broadcom Corporation BCM4306 802.11b/g Wireless LAN Controller [14e4:4320] (rev 02)
    From this, I take it to mean that I need to install b43-fwcutter and firmware-b43legacy-installer, which I have done. If I am correct, there is an error which requires me to manually download the driver files that these packages normally download. I have downloaded and installed the drivers...and that is as far as I can get. Everything I have seen from this point suggests activating the drivers as such:

    Step 2.

    Under the desktop menu System > Administration > Hardware/Additional Drivers, the b43 drivers can be activated for use.
    Since I have a command-line installation, this isn't an option to me. So, assuming I am on the right track so far, how can I activate the drivers from the command line? AND, if I am not on the right track, could you please help me get there?

    Thanks!

  2. #2
    Join Date
    Mar 2007
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    Denver, CO
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    7,722
    Distro
    Ubuntu Mate 16.04 Xenial Xerus

    Re: command-line wireless for minimal install

    Your definitely close.

    Usually b43 is loaded as a default. Is this the case for you -- meaning lets investigate:

    lshw -C network --- This will list appropriate driver.

    If you see anything else listed than b43 for the driver you can unload the driver (or kernel module as its called in linux) by:
    sudo modprobe -r <module name>

    You can then load b43 by:
    sudo modprobe b43

    Then take a look and see if its associated with the device with the lshw -C network statement.

  3. #3
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Beans
    3

    Re: command-line wireless for minimal install

    lshw -C network

    *-network
    description: Ethernet interface
    product: DP83815 (MacPhyter) Ethernet Controller
    vendor: National Semiconductor Corporation
    physical id: 12
    bus info: pci@0000:00:12.0
    logical name: eth0
    version: 00
    serial: 00:0b:cd:a6:5c:5d
    size: 100Mbit/s
    capacity: 100Mbit/s
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: bus_master cap_list rom ethernet physical tp mii fibre 10bt 10bt-fd 100bt 100bt-fd autonegotiation
    configuration: autonegotiation=on broadcast=yes driver=natsemi driverversion=2.1 duplex=full ip=192.168.2.2 latency=90 maxlatency=52 mingnt=11 multicast=yes port=twisted pair speed=100Mbit/s
    resources: irq:10 ioport:2400(size=256) memory:d0004000-d0004fff memory:54000000-5400ffff
    *-network UNCLAIMED
    description: Network controller
    product: BCM4306 802.11b/g Wireless LAN Controller
    vendor: Broadcom Corporation
    physical id: 0
    bus info: pci@0000:02:00.0
    version: 02
    width: 32 bits
    clock: 33MHz
    capabilities: cap_list
    configuration: latency=0
    resources: memory:50000000-50001fff
    For the wireless card, I don't see a driver listed. Perhaps this is part of the issue?

    I went ahead and tried the command

    modprobe b43

    just to see if anything happened...and my wireless card connected!

    I'm going to restart the computer and see if anything changes or if I can replicate the behavior. Stay tuned...

    UPDATE: I restarted the computer, tried the "modprobe b43" command again (must be run as sudo) and it worked. So things seem to be working, thank you for the help!

    Now that I have the wireless working, what do I need to do so that I don't have to manually start it every time I log on?
    Last edited by angus37; January 29th, 2012 at 07:15 PM. Reason: update on progress

  4. #4
    Join Date
    Jan 2008
    Location
    Manchester UK
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    13,639
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    Ubuntu

    Re: command-line wireless for minimal install

    The additional drivers app is known as jockey.

    There is a cli version known as jockey-text.

    Use that.

  5. #5
    Join Date
    Feb 2009
    Beans
    3

    Re: command-line wireless for minimal install

    Quote Originally Posted by nothingspecial View Post
    The additional drivers app is known as jockey.

    There is a cli version known as jockey-text.

    Use that.
    I've not heard of jockey before; tried installing it but still not sure how to use it.

    I added the line 'b43' in the /etc/modules file and the wireless started up upon reboot.

    I'm going to consider this a success unless anyone who knows more than me (which is pretty much all of you) sees a reason to not do this.

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