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( Mandriva and PCLos )

Julia ( aka teacher ) wrote us some words on an easy way to configure NDISwrapper:

QUOTE (Julia)
Installing a windows wireless driver in Linux can be done through the use of a program called ndiswrapper. This is the way to go if your wireless card does not have Linux support. If you are using Mandriva/Mandrake or PCLinuxOS, then you may be able to install your NDISWrapper through the Control Center. 

The very first thing you need to do is locate the .inf file in Windows that supports your driver. *)
If you do not have Windows on your computer, you will need to search on the Internet or the disks that came with your card for the .inf file. Make sure the file is somewhere you have easy access to it from Linux.

With that said, we will now go through the easy way to install with NDISWrapper. The first thing to do after you have located your driver, is to make sure it is handy. I move mine from windows to my home directory. You can get it from the Internet by googling for it or checking some of the resources available or you can find it on a CD or in your Windows where it is usually under /WINDOWS/system32/Drivers/ and then in a folder. Mine is in Atheros/Wireless \LAN/ within the Drivers folder. Notice the backslashes in the folder name. Those represent spaces in the folder name. The easy way to get past that is to press the tab key after you start typing. If I type cd followed by the first part of the name, it will then fill in the rest of the name for me. Handy trick.   I simply type
cd At

and then press tab and it does the rest.

Now that you have finally found that elusive driver we can go to the menus and go from here.

Click on the menu-button down on your task bar across the bottom of your screen.  Go up to configuration and then over and down to PCLinuxOS Control Center or Mandrake Control Center..

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A menu will pop up that starts off as "run as root". You will need to type your root password in the box and press enter.

. . . . . . user posted image

Now you are in the control center. This is a good spot to explore around and see all the things that can be done the easy way - by clicking on links. But before you go off and exploring, let's take a look at the tab labeled "networking". Don't get distracted by the last menu entry either. That is for after your drivers are set up for your wireless device.

. . . . . . user posted image

The first thing to do is to click on that first entry - the one labeled “Create a new network interface (LAN, ADSL, Wireless, etc.).” Simple enough? Let's get going.

Now under new connection we are going to click on the bottom button - wireless connection. Once you have done that then click next.

. . . . . . user posted image

Next it asks about the network to configure. It gives you two choices. First you can select "manually load a driver" and see if you can follow it from there and if it works. If it does, great, you are done.

. . . . . . user posted image

If not, you will use ndiswrapper, and you will go back to where you selected "manually load a driver," and this time click the bottom option to "use a windows driver with ndiswrapper" and once again click next.
It will then ask if you want to install a new driver and that is what you will do.

. . . . . . user posted image

The next screen says "net device" and that is it. Simply click next. The next few screens will vary according to your boot situation. Since you are running wireless, I assume you are going through a wireless router and it holds your configuration. I simply click next through the next few screens but you will need to adapt them as necessary for your situation.

The screens are:
Automatic ip (boot/dhcp) or manual configuration
Assign host name or default
Wireless parameters: You will need to think about this screen. You can simply click "auto" and "any" or you can change this. If you are using encryption you will use the word "managed" instead of "auto" and then you will indicate the network name and your encryption id. Otherwise, you can go with "auto" and "any".

. . . . . . user posted image

The next screen is for the wireless parameters for your card. I have never needed to put anything here but if you know of specific parameters then you will enter them here. If in doubt, go take a look at the desktop link for the "man pages".

Host name: If you need to enter something here, then go ahead. I leave it blank. It is the same for the next screen: zeroconference host.

Do you want to allow users to connect? If you say no then only root will be able to connect.

Finally, it tells you the network needs to restart and asks for your permission. Here you need to tell it yes and then wait a minute or two while it does its thing.

Hasn't this been easy so far? Now it says the configuration is finished and wants you to restart your x environment. What on earth is that? Simple. All you need to do is to go back to your menu-button and click on log out and then you will log back in and everything should be working.

If that does not work, it will be a good time to go post questions on the forum, giving as many details as possible about your wireless device.

Happy Browsing.

Thanks Julia . . . . this looks so simple maybe it is time to get a wireless myself soon ! <g>


PS: Here is an interesting link with a list of cards known to work with ndiswrapper

*) You can use Majorgeeks - DriverBackup to backup the drivers in Windows Vista or XP. It will locate and copy the wireless drivers to a folder.

-- Jun 28 2005 ( Revised Dec 30 2008 ) --

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