Ubuntu 11.10-Desktop-i386.iso-Ocelot unable to see USb Wireless Adapter

Forum: LinuxTotal Replies: 11
Author Content
bayprince

Dec 28, 2011
1:40 PM EST
Installed Ubuntu-Ocelot successfully, but unable to find the Network file or pgrm to apply the various wireless settings, such as SSID, encryption, IP, etc. I did check the Network folder in System Settings but it only offered Proxy connection as an option; nothing for a wired or wireless connection. I believe my inability to apply the usual network settings is the root of my no-connect situation

I am new to Linux so my navigating around Ubuntu is truly just peck n' poke right now. If by chance the 'wireless network setup file' isn't installed, plz let me know where to get it. And, how to download (if special requirements are needed) and install it.

I have installed a NetGear N300 Wireless USB WNA3100 Adapter which I know for sure WORKS.

Thanks much
jdixon

Dec 28, 2011
3:19 PM EST
Well, in 10.04 (Lucid Lynx) the wireless connections are handled by Network Manager, which is accessed by clicking on the network symbol in the upper task bar. With 11.10 and the new Unity interface, I have no idea how it's accessed. :(

I'm sure the NetGear N300 works, but are you sure it works with Linux? This thread:

http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=1853356

seems to indicate that it may not.

The reviews on NewEgg indicate that this one;

http://www.newegg.com/Product/Product.aspx?Item=N82E16833166...

does work, but it's only an N150, not an N300. At $7.99 though, it's hard to beat.
helios

Dec 29, 2011
8:42 AM EST
Just right click the network icon, click properties and off you go. You will have to click the wireless tab on top but that should let you get done what you need to. Also, wireless adapter manufacturers are notorious for changing chipsets with each new release of their product, even between different lots of the same model. The Foo9000 usb adapter you bought last year might be running an Atheros chip but the identical one you buy at Frys today might hold a Broadcom chipset. Best to run lsusb or lspci if it's a pci card and identify the chip that way. At least you will know.
Steven_Rosenber

Dec 29, 2011
10:17 AM EST
Welcome to Linux. WiFi adapter vendors are notorious for switching up the chipsets but keeping the same model numbers. Like helios said, run lsusb and lspci in a terminal -- and it usually can't hurt to run dmesg either.

Once you figure out the chipset, it's time to Google it.

I've had plenty of trouble with WiFi adapters. It's generally better not to buy until you figure out if the adapter you're looking at works out of the box. Eventually most of them get into the kernel and you're good to go.

Trying the adapters in live distros is the best way to make sure they work.

There certainly was a time when I ran OpenBSD because it recognized a chipset before Linux. That does happen.

I wish this process (getting working wireless networking) wasn't so d@mn geeky. It scares people away. That said, I'll put in a plug for NetworkManager -- I use it all the time and recommend it. Even 3g modems are recognized automatically, not to mention WiFi adapters.
jdixon

Dec 29, 2011
10:40 AM EST
> It's generally better not to buy until you figure out if the adapter you're looking at works out of the box

NewEgg's ratings section is a blessing in that regard. You simply search the ratings for Linux. You may have to go through a number of screens to find it, but they'll almost always tell you if the device works with Linux.
Steven_Rosenber

Dec 29, 2011
11:13 AM EST
Yep, if something has no reviews, it's too new to be in the kernel. If it has a hundred reviews, you'll have a good idea of whether it'll run.
JaseP

Dec 29, 2011
2:05 PM EST
Google the part to determine what chipset it uses, then Google that chipset for support under Ubuntu or debian. It might be as simple as downloading a deb file and installing it. I fixed a problem my wife was having that way.
gus3

Dec 29, 2011
9:39 PM EST
Your wife's problem was fixed with just a .deb file?

Wow, GNU/Linux really does make life easier!
helios

Dec 30, 2011
8:31 AM EST
Also, on the actual device itself, it will say rev 2 or rev 3, something like that. The revision numbers are extremely important as they reflect different firmware or can help you suss out what chipset the device uses.
JaseP

Dec 30, 2011
9:52 AM EST
@gus3:

Yes,... just a .deb file. Problematic WiFi/Bluetooth chipset. A Gateway netbook that had a documented WiFi issue... Downloaded and installed a new driver module, and Presto!,... all fixed. You gotta love when it's that simple.
bayprince

Jan 03, 2012
11:56 AM EST
Thanks for all replies. I learned that Ocelot disliked my NetGear adapter, but loves the more costly D-Link RangeBooster 140. I am now accessing the WEB wirelessly. 2012 is starting off great!
Steven_Rosenber

Jan 03, 2012
7:11 PM EST
Sometimes it's just easier to grab a new adapter and save yourself the trouble. Eventually most adapters make it into the Linux kernel. It's a good idea to try out the adapter periodically to see if it has made it.

You cannot post until you login.