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Hello all, I am trying to resurrect an old Dell Inspiron 8000 laptop with 256MB, so I put Slacko Puppy on it, which works fine. But I haven't been able ...
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  1. #1
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    [SOLVED] Netgear wifi just barely working


    Hello all,

    I am trying to resurrect an old Dell Inspiron 8000 laptop with 256MB, so I put Slacko Puppy on it, which works fine. But I haven't been able to get the wireless to connect, which is the main thing I wanted it for.

    The card is recognized, lights flash properly, sees the network, and on rare occasions will connect - but it's like the routers giving it the cold shoulder, not talking to it. Puppy sends out lots of pings and only gets the occasional response. I only get about 10% reply rate on a ping test, sometimes less. It actually loaded mozilla.org one time, but it was verry slow and dropped before I could load another page. Just getting an IP address from the router takes a long time, and often fails.

    I have the output requested on the "wireless start here"' page, which follows.

    Code:
    ============ lspci ============
    00:00.0 Host bridge [0600]: Intel Corporation 82815 815 Chipset Host Bridge and Memory Controller Hub [8086:1130] (rev 04)
    	Kernel driver in use: agpgart-intel
    00:01.0 PCI bridge [0604]: Intel Corporation 82815 815 Chipset AGP Bridge [8086:1131] (rev 04)
    00:1e.0 PCI bridge [0604]: Intel Corporation 82801 Mobile PCI Bridge [8086:2448] (rev 03)
    00:1f.0 ISA bridge [0601]: Intel Corporation 82801BAM ISA Bridge (LPC) [8086:244c] (rev 03)
    00:1f.1 IDE interface [0101]: Intel Corporation 82801BAM IDE U100 Controller [8086:244a] (rev 03)
    	Subsystem: Intel Corporation Device [8086:4541]
    	Kernel driver in use: ata_piix
    00:1f.2 USB Controller [0c03]: Intel Corporation 82801BA/BAM USB Controller #1 [8086:2442] (rev 03)
    	Subsystem: Intel Corporation Device [8086:4541]
    	Kernel driver in use: uhci_hcd
    01:00.0 VGA compatible controller [0300]: nVidia Corporation NV11 [GeForce2 Go] [10de:0112] (rev b2)
    	Subsystem: Dell Device [1028:00e6]
    	Kernel driver in use: nouveau
    02:03.0 Multimedia audio controller [0401]: ESS Technology ES1983S Maestro-3i PCI Audio Accelerator [125d:1998] (rev 10)
    	Subsystem: Dell ES1983S Maestro-3i (Dell Inspiron 8100) [1028:00e6]
    	Kernel driver in use: snd_maestro3
    02:06.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: 3Com Corporation 3c556 Hurricane CardBus [Cyclone] [10b7:6055] (rev 10)
    	Subsystem: 3Com Corporation Device [10b7:6456]
    	Kernel driver in use: 3c59x
    02:06.1 Communication controller [0780]: 3Com Corporation Mini PCI 56k Winmodem [10b7:1007] (rev 10)
    	Subsystem: 3Com Corporation Mini PCI 56K Modem [10b7:615b]
    02:0f.0 CardBus bridge [0607]: Texas Instruments PCI4451 PC card Cardbus Controller [104c:ac42]
    	Subsystem: Dell PCI4451 PC card CardBus Controller (Inspiron 8100) [1028:00e6]
    	Kernel driver in use: yenta_cardbus
    02:0f.1 CardBus bridge [0607]: Texas Instruments PCI4451 PC card Cardbus Controller [104c:ac42]
    	Subsystem: Dell PCI4451 PC card CardBus Controller (Inspiron 8100) [1028:00e6]
    	Kernel driver in use: yenta_cardbus
    02:0f.2 FireWire (IEEE 1394) [0c00]: Texas Instruments PCI4451 IEEE-1394 Controller [104c:8027]
    	Subsystem: Dell PCI4451 IEEE-1394 Controller (Dell Inspiron 8100) [1028:00e6]
    	Kernel driver in use: firewire_ohci
    07:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Atheros Communications Inc. Atheros AR5001X+ Wireless Network Adapter [168c:0013] (rev 01)
    	Subsystem: Netgear WG511T 108 Mbps Wireless PC Card (rev.A/B) [1385:4b00]
    	Kernel driver in use: ath5k
    
    ============ lsusb ============
    Bus 001 Device 001: ID 1d6b:0001 Linux Foundation 1.1 root hub
    Bus 001 Device 038: ID 0461:4d64 Primax Electronics, Ltd 
    Bus 001 Device 036: ID 0781:5530 SanDisk Corp. 
    
    ============ lsmod ============
    Module                  Size  Used by
    ch7006                 13961  1 
    nouveau               537585  2 
    drm_kms_helper         17455  2 ch7006,nouveau
    ttm                    36543  1 nouveau
    drm                   119536  5 ch7006,nouveau,drm_kms_helper,ttm
    mxm_wmi                  993  1 nouveau
    wmi                     5863  1 mxm_wmi
    i2c_algo_bit            3600  1 nouveau
    i2c_core               12559  5 ch7006,nouveau,drm_kms_helper,drm,i2c_algo_bit
    fan                     1714  0 
    arc4                     978  2 
    snd_maestro3           11568  0 
    snd_ac97_codec         76936  1 snd_maestro3
    ac97_bus                 702  1 snd_ac97_codec
    snd_pcm_oss            27363  0 
    snd_mixer_oss           9846  1 snd_pcm_oss
    snd_pcm                46865  3 snd_maestro3,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm_oss
    snd_page_alloc          4685  1 snd_pcm
    snd_seq_dummy            907  0 
    snd_seq_oss            19155  0 
    snd_seq_midi            3248  0 
    snd_seq_midi_event      3636  2 snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi
    snd_rawmidi            11838  1 snd_seq_midi
    ath5k                 110457  0 
    mac80211              135762  1 ath5k
    snd_seq                32220  6 snd_seq_dummy,snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi,snd_seq_midi_event
    ath                    10422  1 ath5k
    cfg80211              113722  3 ath5k,mac80211,ath
    rfkill                  9954  1 cfg80211
    snd_seq_device          3541  5 snd_seq_dummy,snd_seq_oss,snd_seq_midi,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq
    snd_timer              11743  2 snd_pcm,snd_seq
    snd                    32906  10 snd_maestro3,snd_ac97_codec,snd_pcm_oss,snd_mixer_oss,snd_pcm,snd_seq_oss,snd_rawmidi,snd_seq,snd_seq_device,snd_timer
    soundcore               3321  1 snd
    evdev                   5816  1 
    firewire_ohci          21551  0 
    firewire_core          34504  1 firewire_ohci
    3c59x                  25376  0 
    intel_agp               7956  1 
    intel_gtt               9113  1 intel_agp
    pcspkr                  1195  0 
    agpgart                17874  4 ttm,drm,intel_agp,intel_gtt
    shpchp                 17907  0 
    ppdev                   4074  0 
    video                   9383  1 nouveau
    button                  3275  1 nouveau
    battery                 8263  0 
    thermal                 6162  0 
    parport_pc             18236  0 
    parport                20315  2 ppdev,parport_pc
    processor              20513  1 
    thermal_sys             9722  4 fan,video,thermal,processor
    ac                      2293  0 
    hwmon                    965  1 thermal_sys
    fuse                   47599  2 
    aufs                  119852  52 
    squashfs               18852  1 
    yenta_socket           16011  0 
    floppy                 40861  0 
    
    ============ dmesg-firmware ============
    
    ============ kernel version ============
    3.1.10-slacko_4gA
    
    ============ ifconfig ============
    eth0      Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:04:76:50:E4:51  
              UP BROADCAST MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
              RX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
              TX packets:0 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
              collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000 
              RX bytes:0 (0.0 B)  TX bytes:0 (0.0 B)
              Interrupt:10 Base address:0xec00 
    
    lo        Link encap:Local Loopback  
              inet addr:127.0.0.1  Mask:255.0.0.0
              UP LOOPBACK RUNNING  MTU:16436  Metric:1
              RX packets:1189 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
              TX packets:1189 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
              collisions:0 txqueuelen:0 
              RX bytes:120923 (118.0 KiB)  TX bytes:120923 (118.0 KiB)
    
    wlan0     Link encap:Ethernet  HWaddr 00:09:5B:98:9C:53  
              UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST  MTU:1500  Metric:1
              RX packets:1698 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
              TX packets:2536 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
              collisions:0 txqueuelen:1000 
              RX bytes:152808 (149.2 KiB)  TX bytes:298976 (291.9 KiB)
    
    
    ============ iwconfig ============
    It appears to not have run the iwconfig, don't know why.

    Just to speed things up, here's what I know so far:

    - Card is Netgear WG511T, chipset Atheros AR5001X (from code posted above)

    - ath5k driver doesn't specifically support this chip #.

    - it seems to be working better than most folks posting problems; we are in fact talking with the router over wireless! Just not very reliably, and not enough to support a connection.

    - when I am lucky enough to get an IP address I can ping Google and Yahoo with ~700ms or more delay, and high packet loss.

    - Not out of range. The signal is good enough to support a connection, and its no better sitting right by the router.



    Any help is greatly appreciated!
    Last edited by kymetro9999; 07-08-2012 at 11:54 AM. Reason: solved

  2. #2
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    Hello and Welcome!

    I've not used Slacko. So my help might be limited.
    But ath5k is rather outdated. That chipset is batter supported by ath9k.
    Not an easy fix, but this page might help.
    Jay

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  3. #3
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    Here is something that might help or not.

    Puppy Linux Discussion Forum :: View topic - Toshiba Satellite Pro L20 with Atheros 2413 wifi bug fix

    last post kinda bothers me though

    not sure if anyone has succeeded in getting it working on Slacko. . .
    Kinda curious why you picked Slack0? Me I would have tried maybe

    Puppy Linux Discussion Forum :: View topic - Lighthouse Pup 5.03 203M Wine 1.3.14 (not being maintained)

    Because it works well on my IBM A22 M new/old laptop I received. 800 mhz processor. 256MB of ram. 7 gig hardrive. Same wireless chip and driver as yours. My wireless card is a Dlink WNA 1330 pcmcia carbus.

    I have removed opera as default browser in that Lighthouse Puppy install and am running Flash 11.1 (anything later fails on low spec pcs). Plus latest java also.

    SeaMonkey 2.6.1 ,Firefox 9.0.1,LightHouse,503,Frugal Install,Flashplayer&Plugins Puppy Linux Help & Forum

    The post is 6months old so I have updated stuff since then.

    If wanting a tweaked version of slack0. You might to look at

    PuppEX 2012, A remaster of Puppy Linux Slacko 5.3.1 Puppy Linux Help & Forum

    By the way. Howdy and Welcome.

    Edit: just saw your post Jay. I think Slack0 5.3.3 comes with a newer kernel and the ath9k driver also.

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  5. #4
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    Hi rokytnji and jayd512, thanks for the welcome. Newbie to Linux as you can tell.

    The only reason I picked slacko - it's currently at the top of the page on Puppylinux.org, under "download latest release". It's the first one I saw, didn't even scroll down, didn't think about multiple variants, just figured that was *the* Puppy distro.

    So now I see Lucid Puppy further down, Wary on another page. Any others that might be what I want? Mostly looking for light web browsing (parts lookup) and a music player for the workshop. Will give Lucid a shot next.

    Hoping a more mainstream release will have the new driver preinstalled, because plugging it into ethernet will be a hassle. Old machine, broken screen means ext. monitor, no battery life, etc. It's more of a desktop machine with all the peripherals.

    OK, off to get Lucid Puppy and will report back!

    EDIT: rokytnji, I am using that version, 5.3.3 Slacko. If it has the ath9k driver, it chose not to use it. I will verify whether it's there or not.

  6. #5
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    OK, I just verified that ath9k is included in the Slacko build. Why isn't it loading if it's better than the ath5k?

    Will try forcing it to load the ath9k and see if that helps.

  7. #6
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    ath5k is still a default working driver for many wireless adapters.
    While athk9 is a bit newer and still slightly untested for others.
    Hence, the default loading.

    Let us know how your test goes.
    Jay

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  8. #7
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    OK, ath9k is a no-go for this card. After these commands:

    Code:
    sudo modprobe -r ath5k
    sudo modprobe ath9k
    lsmod
    I verified that ath9k was working, and refreshed the network, and it lost the card completely. iwconfig and ifconfig both showed no wlan.

    Quick reversal and we're back to square one:
    Code:
    sudo modprobe -r ath9k
    sudo modprobe ath5k
    lsmod
    And it is back to minimal functionality. I'm suspecting it's not the driver. Could anything else be causing a highly intermittent connection?

    Lucid Pup in 10 minutes...

  9. #8
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    Lucid Puppy is no better, different tool set, defaulted to ath5k as expected. I tried ath9k and got nothing. ath5k works - except that it wont talk with the router. I think I've hit a rabbit trail, the driver is fine, card seems OK, must be something else not working. Maybe the router doesn't like Linux?

  10. #9
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    Solved! Rebooted the router with Puppy machine running and now all is well. Internet is working great! Thanks for all your help.

  11. #10
    Administrator jayd512's Avatar
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    And here I was looking through various webpages for a fix!
    You've just gotta love it when the solution is right there in front of you!

    Glad you got it working!
    If all seems well, go ahead and mark the thread as [SOLVED] with the Thread Tools button on the top blue nav-bar.
    Jay

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