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Author Topic: Broadcom Chipset Problems  (Read 2398 times)
oblivion02
Member
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Posts: 22


« on: May 11, 2008, 04:39:05 pm »

Hey guys,

I had no problem compiling my kernel, I compiled a 2.6.24, and a 2.6.25 one... Just to see if I could get wireless working following the instructions found in http://linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/b43 In other distributions, I've had problems with my chipset because it wasnt natively supported in the past... But now, it has pretty functional support. In Zenwalk Linux, I had it working with no problems at all... In Vector Linux, I havent been able to configure wlan0 properly. The networking seems to be a bit difficult to set up in this distro. When I connect the ethernet cable, I have to configure the interface manually, and bring it up manually. The wireless has been quite a hassle also... I install the firmware, I try to bring it up, but it doesnt detect the interface. When I type in "iwconfig" however, it does detect the interface. "iwlist wlan0 scan" does not work, because it says that the interface is not up. I have a Broadcom 4318 chipset. I was wondering if anyone has had similar issues, or if someone has a recipe for success! Any help would be greatly appreciated. I love Vector Linux's stability and speed... I really hope I can sort out these issues with the networking so that I can make Vector my main distro... Right now Im running W!ndows (Yuck!) until I can sort this out.

-Oblivion
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M0E-lnx
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 3195



« Reply #1 on: May 11, 2008, 05:23:01 pm »

I have the same wireless chip. I've always used w/ ndiswrapper though...

Here is a howto for setting it up
http://vectorlinux.com/wiki/doku.php?id=howtos:wlan-broadcom
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oblivion02
Member
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Posts: 22


« Reply #2 on: May 12, 2008, 07:40:45 am »

Yeah Ndiswrapper usually works like a charm. I just prefer the native driver, since I know it IS functional (I tested it on Zenwalk). If I do not manage to set up the native driver, I'll probably just use ndiswrapper, cuz I really like Vector... But I'd like to sort this out...

-Oblivion
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M0E-lnx
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 3195



« Reply #3 on: May 12, 2008, 07:43:33 am »

It is useable... I've had it working on VL too, but I prefer ndiswrapper because I get better speed rates and its not as hard to get working..

I haven't used the native drivers in a while though
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uelsk8s
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 2504



« Reply #4 on: May 12, 2008, 07:44:28 am »

oblivion02,
2 things you can do
1) grab kernel, and modules from zenwalk and use them in your VL
2) diff the VL and zenwalk .config's and see where they differ and then make your own kernel

Uelsk8s
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oblivion02
Member
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Posts: 22


« Reply #5 on: May 12, 2008, 05:29:07 pm »

Sounds like a plan! I'll do that this week. If I figure anything out, I'll post a HOW-TO in case any other members have a broadcom chipset and want to use native drivers. Too bad I threw away my Zenwalk CD, but I think I have the ISO somewhere... I'll let you guys know. Wink
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M0E-lnx
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 3195



« Reply #6 on: May 12, 2008, 05:50:47 pm »

Sounds like a plan! I'll do that this week. If I figure anything out, I'll post a HOW-TO in case any other members have a broadcom chipset and want to use native drivers. Too bad I threw away my Zenwalk CD, but I think I have the ISO somewhere... I'll let you guys know. Wink

That would be sweet!
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oblivion02
Member
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Posts: 22


« Reply #7 on: May 18, 2008, 03:09:59 pm »

I've tried recompiling the kernel, I tried kernel 2.6.24.x, and 2.6.25.3, and I can't get the b43 driver working.

Apparently tho, Vector Linux 5.9 brings a bcmwl5 driver already (using ndiswrapper). I figured I'll just use ndiswrapper for now, eventually I'll figure something out, but right now the priority is to get Wi-Fi working, and it is. But thanks for the help anyway. If you guys figure anything out to get the native broadcom driver working, please let me know.
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M0E-lnx
Administrator
Vectorian
*****
Posts: 3195



« Reply #8 on: May 18, 2008, 03:51:38 pm »

I know for a fact that I had to upgrade the firmware on mine before to get it to work...

You may want to try that

Try reading the dmesg | grep "Radio"
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oblivion02
Member
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Posts: 22


« Reply #9 on: May 18, 2008, 04:15:00 pm »

I'm using the firmware that the b43 website recommends. It worked fine in other distributions, but I figured its not worth the headache....
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bigpaws
Vectorian
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Posts: 1862


« Reply #10 on: May 18, 2008, 06:11:46 pm »

oblivion02

You are right the kernel above iirc 2.6.14.3 breaks due to
Ndiswrapper tainting the kernel. You need to rm the
b43, b44, and ssb then reload the modules with
Ndiswrapper.

There is not alot of documentation on this problem. You
can also use fwcutter to install the rest of the firmware for
the broadcom chipset. My experiences are that the Ndiswrapper
solution works better.

Bigpaws
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oblivion02
Member
*
Posts: 22


« Reply #11 on: May 18, 2008, 10:12:38 pm »

What I did was install the 2.6.24.x kernel, downloaded from the VL Repositories. Once I installed the kernel, I blacklisted the bcm43xx driver, I uninstalled bcmwl5 from ndiswrapper, I used the fw-cutter to install the apropiate firmware, I added "wlan0" to /etc/modprobe.conf and told it to use the b43 driver, I modprobed b43, rebooted, used VL-WIFI, and got it working perfectly. If anyone has any questions as to the specific commands, well I can post them up tomorrow... Its just very late, and I'm tired. But I will gladly post the steps if anyone is interested.

-Oblivion
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exeterdad
Packager
Vectorian
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Posts: 2046



« Reply #12 on: May 19, 2008, 02:21:59 am »

oblivion02,

Congrats on getting it working. If you could find the time to post your solution, it would be very cool. This issue doesn't affect me, but it would be nice for future readers to have that information available. The more information our users put on this board, the better.  Makes our "search" feature that much more productive. Smiley
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oblivion02
Member
*
Posts: 22


« Reply #13 on: May 19, 2008, 05:48:10 pm »

Code:
Here is the solution that has worked for me:

Upgrade Kernel to 2.6.24.3:
[CODE] http://vectorlinux.osuosl.org/veclinux-5.9/kernels/
Download the kernel and kernel modules, the source is not necesary, unless you want to manually compile the kernel.
Afterwards, install the new kernel, and the kernel modules. As a root user, update your lilo by typing: "/sbin/lilo".

Once your done working with the kernel, time to work with b43 module.

*Note: You may want to become root, "su", since most of the things we will be doing require root priviledges.*

What we're going to do now is just remove the ndiswrapper driver, to make sure it doesnt interfere with the b43 module.

Type in: "ndiswrapper -l";
You should see a driver called bcmwl5. Thats the one we want to remove.

Type in: "ndiswrapper -r bcmwl5"
This removes the bcmwl5 driver.

Now, your going to want to blacklist the bcm43xx module as well, since it is deprecated. You do not want it to interfere with b43 module either.
[I'm not 100% sure if the bcm43xx module, or ndiswrapper interferes with b43, but I was not in the mood to "test" it. ]
Use your editor of choice, in my case it is bluefish:
Code:
bluefish /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist
To the end of that text file, add the following lines:
Code:
#Broadcom Wireless:
#bcm43xx is deprecated
blacklist bcm43xx

After this, there shouldn't be anything interfering with the b43 module.
So now, we follow the instructions posted in: http://linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/b43
Quote
cd /YOUR/DIRECTORY/OF/CHOICE
wget http://bu3sch.de/b43/fwcutter/b43-fwcutter-011.tar.bz2
tar xjf b43-fwcutter-011.tar.bz2
cd b43-fwcutter-011
make
cd ..
Quote
wget http://downloads.openwrt.org/sources/broadcom-wl-4.80.53.0.tar.bz2
tar xjf broadcom-wl-4.80.53.0.tar.bz2
cd broadcom-wl-4.80.53.0/kmod
../../b43-fwcutter-011/b43-fwcutter -w /lib/firmware wl_apsta.o
"../../b43-fwcutter-011/b43-fwcutter" is basically just the directory where you compiled b43-fwcutter. If you prefer to put it in manually, then do so.

Once the firmware is extracted, we have to edit "/etc/modprobe.conf" to tell it to make wlan0 use the b43 driver. Again, using your editor of choice, in my case bluefish:
Code:
bluefish /etc/modprobe.conf
[CODE]
You should see something like: "alias eth1 xxxx"
xxx is whatever module, or driver is set for eth1 or eth0. Under that,
Add the following line:
"alias wlan0 b43"

Then, type in:
"modprobe b43"

Reboot.

Once the system comes back up, what you do is use VL-WIFI to set up the wlan0 interface.

Honestly, I always have a bit of trouble connecting to a Wireless Connection... Its not the driver though, it seems to be VL-WIFI and Wifi-Radar... If I scan for networks manually, it detects them... BUt when I try to connect, I cant get the IP. Sometimes I have to leave all the entries in VL-WIFI empty, and set it up with wifi-radar, and other times I just manually scan for the available networks and enter the stuff manually into VL-WIFI. I'm going to try to get wicd running in VL. If I do, I'll let you guys know how it goes.

You can run basic tests just to make sure you have everything set up properly:

iwlist wlan0 scan  ---THIS SCANS FOR WIRELESS CONNECTIONS AVAILABLE
             if the result says: "interface is down", you'll have to bring it up manually. I have had more personal success using VL-WIFI instead of bringing it up manually, no clue why.

iwconfig --- SHOULD SHOW THE WLAN0 INTERFACE

NOTE: I'm not really a networking expert, this is just what worked for me. It may, or may not work for you. If you have any questions about the steps followed, let me know and I'll gladly try to help. [/code][/code]
« Last Edit: May 20, 2008, 09:25:58 am by oblivion02 » Logged
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