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  1. #1

    Wireless adapter support: Dlink? LinkSys? Netgear?

    I have Debian 4.0 on a AMD-based PC box and I need to get wireless working on it. It runs wired ethernet fine using the default ethernet port on the mobo.

    The wireless card I currently have is a D-Link WDA-1320, but I can't find a Linux driver for it. If there is another card that will work better with Linux, I'll get that instead (LinkSys WMP54G, or Netgear WG311 maybe?). But none of the vendors seem to offer Linux drivers.

    Any pointers on how to get this working would be great.

  2. #2
    Linux Guru techieMoe's Avatar
    Join Date
    Aug 2004
    I have a PCI Linksys WMP54g network card in my desktop at home and I can confirm that with a tool such as ndiswrapper, it works. You'll have to pull the Microsoft Windows driver (.INF file) off of the included CDROM however. To the best of my knowledge there is no native driver for this particular card.
    Registered Linux user #270181

  3. #3
    Just Joined! techzilla's Avatar
    Join Date
    Apr 2005

    your card is supported

    the dlink wda 1320 uses the Atheros chipset and is supported by the Madwifi driver,

    there are better supported chipsets but they are all old-school wireless B and not the easiest to aquire. and arguably not really that much better supported

    the atheros chipset is best supported wireless G chipset. i would bet ubuntu or slax live linux would automaticly detect and set it up.... debian requires a little more work as i belive you must compile the module yourself.

    i just bought a dlink wda 1320 to use on my linux system, im, setting it up tonight

    ps. ndiswrapper is not a native solution but a dirty hack that enables cards that otherwise would not have any support (or horrible support) to have partially acceptable support. the broadcom chipset is an example where you MAY prefer ndiswrapper over the native (in your linksys case)

    you would NEED the ndiswrapper for a completely unsupported chipset like the one used in the asus wl-138g)

    it would be shame to have to use ndidwrapper on a supported chipset, esppecially w/ such mature support

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  5. #4
    The native driver for the Broadcom chipset (bcm43xx) is not as good as using NDISWrapper and the Windows driver. With bcm43xx I get a reported bandwith speed of 11Mb/s. With NDISWrapper I get a 62Mb/s.

    I have heard that you can use NDISWrapper and the Windows Atheros driver for cards with that chipset.

    I see nothing wrong with using Windows drivers in Linux. Bill Gates gets no fee every time someone uses a Windows driver.

    In this case I think that whatever works best is the winner.
    Please do not send Private Messages to me with requests for help. I will not reply.

  6. #5
    Just Joined! techzilla's Avatar
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    Apr 2005

    ok online w/ the wda 1320; debian x86_64 amd64

    alright i am online right now w/ the wda 1320 using the madwifi drivers.
    ubuntu will support this out of box, but debian requires a little work.

    first you must enable the non-free repo's and get the madwifi-source package as well as the madwifi-tools. you also will need your kernal's header files.

    the easiest way to compile the module is w/ module-assistant

    and ps. I agree on how horrible the broadcom native drivers are which is why people prefer the ndiswrapper. (and i would as well)

    ON the other hand, madwifi is a better driver, and you can actually use most of the wifitools. the wrappers don't support rfmon, so no kismet.

    i also do not see anything at all wrong w/ using ndiswrapper.... when nessesary.
    in this situation; it is just not the best option.

    it is also bad practace to just use the wrapper for anything thats not supported strait out the box..... which seems to be very common in most of the forums

  7. #6
    Just Joined! techzilla's Avatar
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    Apr 2005

    also wanted to say

    also just wanted to say;

    using the native broadcom driver to promote the use of ndiswrapper is ilegit.

    you are taking the worst driver we have for a wireless chipset and making a rash comparison. the native broadcom driver reports the connection speed incorrectly, this a documented bug. (so you really are not connecting at wireless b speed.

    I see nothing wrong with using Windows drivers in Linux. Bill Gates gets no fee every time someone uses a Windows driver.
    this reasoning is also incorrect. the problem with the wrapper is that we cannot include any of the .inf's / .sys's legaly with any distro. (unless in some rare chance the windows drivers are gpl...)

    i just bought a ralink chipset card (zonet zew-1630)
    our driver is 100% GNU GPL and so is the software firmware (unlike the broadcom/atheros) so it just worked "out of box" and incredably well.
    this would havee nerver been a priority if we just all defaulted to the ndiswrapper.
    this is the best possible hardware support we can have, as it is a default module on any distro's kernel.

    the reason i switched my pci wifi card is for 2 reasons

    1. the madwifi is only half gpl, and ubuntu dropped out of box support at version 7.10

    2. the range is kinda crappy...might want to invenst in a high gain antenea

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