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I saw on Slashdot this morning that kernel 2.6.17 has been released, and one of the exciting new features is support for Broadcom's 43xx series of wireless network devices. These ...
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- 06-19-2006 #1
2.6.17: How's the BCM43xx support?
I saw on Slashdot this morning that kernel 2.6.17 has been released, and one of the exciting new features is support for Broadcom's 43xx series of wireless network devices. These have been very popular for laptop computers, including my sorry little eMachine, and until now they've had to use ndiswrapper to work.
My stock Debian kernel is mostly satisfactory, with only one little gripe related to power management. If this new BCM43xx driver works well, that would probably convince me to compile a kernel that suits me down to a t. So here's my question:
Is anyone planning to install a 2.6.17 kernel, who also has a 43xx-series Broadcom wireless adapter? If so, would you mind sharing your experience with how well it works?
- 06-21-2006 #2
From what I've read on the project page, Broadcom never released details about the chip so they've had to reverse engineer it, but the fact it has been included in the kernel should indicate that it works, the question remains how well.
Here's the site, it's not what you were looking for but you might find it interesting to read over. http://bcm43xx.berlios.de/
- 06-30-2006 #3
Thanks for that link, it was an indispensible resource.
I bit the bullet yesterday and compiled the 2.6.17 kernel, all customized neatly for my laptop. I was surprised at how many simple optimizations could be made--it's been a while since I did a custom compile, and the last time I tried, I just didn't know what to do with most of the options.
Anyway, it all went well eventually. I did a lot of trial and error with wireless settings to get it working. Ultimately, I had to limit the throughput rate to 11Mb/s, and specify the MAC address of my access point. Other than that, installation was as simple as it is with ndiswrapper.
If anyone else is using Debian or Debian derivatives and has a Broadcom 43xx wireless chipset, I'd like to point out that everything you need is available in the testing and unstable repositories (I wish I'd known this from the outset), and you can add the driver to a 2.6.15 or .16 kernel using apt-get.