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Can't get Dell Wireless 1490 card to work in Ubuntu

post #1 of 9
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Hey all. I have installed Ubuntu 13.04 64bit on my Dell XPS M1330. I can't get the wireless card to work in Ubuntu although wired connectivity works just fine. The card is specifically a "Dell Wireless 1490 Dual Band WLAN Mini-Card" and works just fine in Windows 7 Professional 64bit. Any recommendation on getting this working?
Edited by Dopamin3 - 7/17/13 at 12:27pm
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post #2 of 9
I would suspect that you need a driver, seeing as it works in windows, thus ruling out hardware fault.

A little research shows that you need a broadcom STA driver, as they are the OEM for the 1490 Dell part number. http://www.broadcom.com/support/802.11/linux_sta.php
info taken from: http://en.community.dell.com/dell-blogs/direct2dell/b/direct2dell/archive/2008/10/03/linux-driver-available-for-dell-wireless-cards.aspx

It comes in a tarball, so I can't help you install it farther (no access to my linux machines at this time)
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post #3 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfeking View Post

I would suspect that you need a driver, seeing as it works in windows, thus ruling out hardware fault.

A little research shows that you need a broadcom STA driver, as they are the OEM for the 1490 Dell part number. http://www.broadcom.com/support/802.11/linux_sta.php
info taken from: http://en.community.dell.com/dell-blogs/direct2dell/b/direct2dell/archive/2008/10/03/linux-driver-available-for-dell-wireless-cards.aspx

It comes in a tarball, so I can't help you install it farther (no access to my linux machines at this time)

You should never download and install from a website when there are alternatives within your distributions repos. This isn't Windows, that's not how we do things in Linux.

The Dell Wireless 1490 uses the BCM4311 chip and as directed by the Ubuntu documents; here , you can indeed install the wl / sta drivers indeed. Instructions at the page.
post #4 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Shrak View Post

You should never download and install from a website when there are alternatives within your distributions repos.
With all due respect, the manufacturers drivers should be no issue. No different than going to Nvidia or ATI for drivers over the crap that is in the repos (by crap I mean outdated drivers).
Quote:
This isn't Windows, that's not how we do things in Linux.
Opinion. There is absolutely no reason not to go to the manufacturer for drivers when they are available. Open source or not. The entire drive (at least for me) with linux is that no matter what the problem is there is always no less than 5 ways to go about it.
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post #5 of 9
think there were lots of ppl having issues with this so they tried this http://ubuntuforums.org/showthread.php?t=297092

seems to have sorted some but not others. hope it helps.
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post #6 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfeking View Post


With all due respect, the manufacturers drivers should be no issue. No different than going to Nvidia or ATI for drivers over the crap that is in the repos (by crap I mean outdated drivers).

Opinion. There is absolutely no reason not to go to the manufacturer for drivers when they are available. Open source or not. The entire drive (at least for me) with linux is that no matter what the problem is there is always no less than 5 ways to go about it.

doh.gif

The point of letting your package manager deal with packages is so that they stay up to date. When you install from source, your package manager does NOT manage them.

There is also no guarantee they will work 100% as needed with all the different distributions out there. I ran into this when I used to do everything from upstream source. Especially when distributions self patch their own packages for specific support that's needed within their own distributions.

There also comes dependencies at which when you install a package from source, you will have to manage yourself as well.

You want up to date video drivers? USE YOUR PACKAGE MANAGER. They ARE there and can be managed so, you aren't forced to use the "out of date" versions.

This is where hybrid systems come into play on Debian based systems and provide a nice advantage of stable / bleeding edge. You can install specific packages from Sid while using Wheezy.


Overall, installing from the package manager is just EASIER, BETTER, FASTER, and GUARANTEED ( so long as you're installing compatible parts ). All of which play a big role for someone like the OP who doesn't have much experience with Linux and the package system, let alone maintaining and dealing with dependencies.

It's just not the recommended way of doing things unless you absolutely have to. And unless you're modifying build flags to add or remove features, or hacking your own code together, building from source is more work than is needed. By the time you go to the site, download the file, untar, it make it, install it... you could have typed 3 commands and been done and on your way.

Just because there are 100 different ways to do something, doesn't mean they're all better than the other. We have a standard, and that is package management, and we have that for a reason.
Edited by Shrak - 7/17/13 at 2:52pm
post #7 of 9
^ Backing Shrak on that. Not only do they stay up to date, many patches come out that fix plain source. OMG A patch to fix a bug, no way!

to the problem, use b43. the STA/WL driver has been AWFUL for me on new kernels. Constant lockups, seems to be an issue with new code and the existing STA/WL driver not incorporating it. A patch apparently exists but never fixed it for me. It works fine on my system with 2GB of ram, anything more and I get a hard lock 10-20sec after using the wifi. B43 is getting much better too, though only Fedora plays nice atm. I haven't hopped in a while, that might be fixed so I don't know. Fedora works butter smooth but now I've got wired soooooo. But here's the info I got.

14e4:4312

Supported by B43, look here: http://wireless.kernel.org/en/users/Drivers/b43

You'll need to get the firmware, b43 is a native kernel driver.

http://wireless.kernel.org/en/users/Drivers/b43#Device_firmware_installation

You can get newer firmware, it probably won't benefit you. I've went to their site and gotten source off the FTP to extract the newest firmware with no amazing results. So those instructions should work well, this is how I would set up the wifi for a broadcom device after the STA/WL issues. It's been a freaking nightmare over here until I found B43. Extract firmware to location, unload module (in case) and then load the module. Bam it worked! I don't think it has DMA properly, something like that? I dunno, i would get this error but speeds were good enough. It uses more CPU than the STA/WL but not enough that I noticed. At least it worked for me. I dunno how well it would go on a laptop but if you have STA/WL issues then this is a decent solution.
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post #8 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfeking View Post


With all due respect, the manufacturers drivers should be no issue. No different than going to Nvidia or ATI for drivers over the crap that is in the repos (by crap I mean outdated drivers).
You should be installing graphics drivers from the repos as well.

Your advice makes it very difficult to run further updates on the machine as one kernel update will break all of your manually compiled drivers.
Quote:
Originally Posted by wolfeking View Post

Opinion. There is absolutely no reason not to go to the manufacturer for drivers when they are available. Open source or not. The entire drive (at least for me) with linux is that no matter what the problem is there is always no less than 5 ways to go about it.
Just because it can be done, it doesn't mean it's a good idea to do so. If you want to compile from source, then use a source based OS (Slackware, Gentoo, FreeBSD, etc) as you can be sure that any OS-specific patches will be included and dependencies met. However recommending manual compiling on Ubuntu is very bad.
post #9 of 9
Quote:
Originally Posted by Plan9 View Post

You should be installing graphics drivers from the repos as well.

Your advice makes it very difficult to run further updates on the machine as one kernel update will break all of your manually compiled drivers.
Just because it can be done, it doesn't mean it's a good idea to do so. If you want to compile from source, then use a source based OS (Slackware, Gentoo, FreeBSD, etc) as you can be sure that any OS-specific patches will be included and dependencies met. However recommending manual compiling on Ubuntu is very bad.

Not entirely true. I've found manually compiling AMD graphics drivers is a must, haven't found repo drivers that work as well. Also, the AMD driver removal scripts (manual compile) are very nice, better than the repo stuff I've seen. Sometimes it works better. I've even had better luck with Nvidia when I had 460s to run, on Ubuntu and Debian my favorite method was the official binaries. So sometimes it works well, others not. You just have to have a feel with it.

Generally for beginners it isn't a thing you should do, so in that aspect you are spot on.

I'm not replying to say you are wrong, just saying that as advice goes that isn't an absolute. Nothing in Linux usually is, there are (as said) multiple ways of doing things. Some fit the purpose better than others. So this is just a shout out to those who may be able to do better but don't, because it is said not too. Push the boundaries and do what works best for you. However in this case, I can almost assure the binaries that Broadcom gives are going to also include headaches.

Again, different scenarios for different things. A manufacturer (in this case) that does not play well, even when they release source, will never play well.
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