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    Debian without wires
    Posted on Monday, November 26 @ 22:01:14 GMT

    There seems to be lots of interest in using wireless connectivity with Debian, however there seems to be lacking information and support for this. If you have any success stories, hints and tips or specific problems post a comment below.

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  • "Debian without wires" | Login/Create Account | 10 comments

    The comments are owned by the poster. We aren't responsible for their content.

    Wireless support already in place (Score: 1)
    by l0l0 on Monday, November 26 @ 22:49:12 GMT
    (User Info)

    As most wireless equipment is PCMCIA and looks like an ethernet to the machine there is not much need for support. The pcmcia-cs should contain everything you need.

    A big problem though is that the old 2Mbps wireless cards based on the PRISM 1 chipset are not supported with kernel 2.4 anymore as the driver has not been maintained for a long time (And had OOps kind of bugs before too)


    [ Reply ]

    • prism chipset by MonkeyMaster on Sunday, December 02 @ 01:06:26 GMT

    Security of connection should be considered also. (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Monday, November 26 @ 23:29:05 GMT

    You may want to look at securing your wireless connection too using something like IPSec. I think this is what NASA did using OpenBSD.

    [ Reply ]

    wireless kernels (Score: 0)
    by Anonymous on Tuesday, November 27 @ 02:08:30 GMT

    The biggest blocker AFAIK is that you don't have any packaged kernels and pcmcia modules with wireless support compiled in.

    To get connect to anything but the most poorly setup wireless network, you'll need to set the ESSID (network name), encryption key, and possibly a few others wich can only be done using iwconfig from the wireless-tools package. iwconfig needs wireless support compiled into the kernel and pcmcia modules (if any).

    So, on your typical Debian system, you need to do the following:

    - apt-get install wireless-tools

    - build and install your kernel with wireless support:

    Network device support >

    Wireless LAN (non-hamradio) >

    Wireless LAN (non-hamradio): yes

    - build and install the pcmcia modules (if you are using a pcmcia wireless card)

    - reboot, configure.

    Configuration for pcmcia cards is easily done via /etc/pcmcia/wireless.opts, but I've never configured a non-pcmcia Linux system for wireless, so maybe someone who has could pipe up?

    Lastly, if yuo are using pcmcia wireless cards, early support for them in 2.4 was broken or missing, so yuo are better off using the standalone pcmcia modules, rather than the builtin ones. This may have changed recently, but I haven't tested it, and besides, using the pcmcia modules is slightly more bleeding-edge. 8)



    [ Reply ]

    Re: Debian wiithout wires (Score: 1)
    by asuzuki (as at cynox dot ch) on Tuesday, November 27 @ 17:39:46 GMT
    (User Info)

    I have a Cisco 350 Wirless Ethernet card working flawlessly with a 2.4.13 kernel. I have compiled both the kernel and the pcmcia-modules and built them into seperate debian packages.

    BTW: I study Computer Science at the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology (, most of the buildings are covered with WLAN... you can download with about 500 Kilos per second over a wireless link.... apt-get update & upgrade never worked smoother 😉

    [ Reply ]

    Re: Debian without wires (Score: 1)
    by asjo on Friday, November 30 @ 21:32:23 GMT
    (User Info)

    I'm using Debian on an orange Apple iBook with an Airport card and an Apple Airport basestation. Works nicely.


    [ Reply ]

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