Re: Broadcom B43 Wireless Card / Driver Issues

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On 1/29/08, John W. Linville <[email protected]> wrote:
> On Tue, Jan 29, 2008 at 09:53:27AM -0200, Martin Marques wrote:
> > Manish Kathuria escribió:
> > >I am using Fedora 8 x86_64 (kernel on my Dell Vostro
> > >laptop which has a Broadcom Corporation BCM94311MCG wireless mini PCI
> > >lan device which has been automatically detected and uses the b43
> > >wireless driver.
> > >
> > >I have configured the wireless device wlan0 using a static IP address
> > >and have provided the ESSID, CHANNEL, MODE, RATE settings. The
> > >wireless device comes up and gets associated with the  Access Point /
> > >Wireless Router when the system is started. However if the wireless
> > >router is restarted the wireless device on the laptop fails to
> > >associate with it again and I have to restart the network service in
> > >order to connect to it. If I remember correctly, the Intel Centrino
> > >ipw2200 device on my older laptop never had this problem and nor does
> > >a PCI wireless card (Realtek 8180) which I have configured using
> > >ndiswrapper. What could be the reason for this problem ? Any tips or
> > >suggestions ?
> >
> > Use NetworkManager.

I tried to run it but it could not connect to the wireless network.
Then I updated it to the latest version available
(NetworkManager-0.7.0-0.6.7.svn3204.fc8.x86_64) but it dies
immediately as soon as I start the service and gives the message

NetworkManager dead but pid file exists

though the NetworkManagerDispatcher keeps on running. Anyhow, this is
a secondary problem and I will try to fix it.

> Good advice.  Alternatively you could use wpa_supplicant (whether or
> not you are using WPA encryption), or you could simply do "iwconfig
> wlan0 essid $ESSID" whenever you detect that your AP has been reset.

I have been restarting the network service or running the Wireless
Assistant to reconnect to the wireless network.

> If you want a technical explanation...the hardware in question is
> "soft MAC" device which uses the mac80211 infrastructure in the
> kernel.  The mac80211 component has a limited MLME implemenation
> which relies on userland intervention at a number of points.  One of
> those points is for triggering associations.  When you reset your AP,
> your association is lost.  So, you must trigger a new association.
> wpa_supplicant (which is also used by NetworkManager) is smart enough
> to trigger the association for you.
> As for why it works for the other devices cited, the ipw2200 has a
> robust MLME implemented in firmware.  It does not require userland
> intervention.  The rtl8180 actually is a "soft MAC" device, but since
> you are using ndiswrapper (which should not be needed in F8 BTW)
> the Windows driver must contain it's own MLME implementation.

Excellent explanation. I think I need to work on the NetworkManager to
fix this issue. The RTL 8180L card is on a multi boot system with
Fedora 7 and CentOS 5 so I am still using ndiswrapper.

> Hth!
> John
> --
> John W. Linville
> [email protected]

Thanks a lot.

Manish Kathuria

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