How To: Wireless LAN with Broadcom BCM4312 in Fedora 11

Fedora 11 does have support for Broadcom wireless drivers, but it didn’t really work out on a friend’s laptop. Finally we got it working and I thought I’ll just note the steps down. Below are the three easy steps you need to take to make it work properly.

Step 1

Install needed packages

[root@fedora ~]$ yum install broadcom-wlĀ  wl-kmod

Step 2

Once the packages are installed successfully, reboot your laptop.

Step 3

Use the following command

[root@fedora ~]$ system-config-network

And add a new wireless device wlan0 or whatever you want by filling the required fields properly. If you want the device to be managed by NetworkManager, you can do so while editing the device you just added.

Activate the device. And you are on wifi :)

 

Review: Fedora 8 – Warewolf

I installed Fedora 8 32 bit from a leaky mirror on Nov 7th and I just had a very bad experience with it. Nothing seemed to be working. But I can’t accept that. As I am a hardcore fan of Fedora, I just can’t sit back and say “ah, Fedora 8 sucks, i am not gonna use that”. I fetched Fedora 8 x86_64 (64bit) from a mirror yesterday, after the release. I installed it and everything worked out of the box. I can’t believe that I wrote something wrong about Fedora. How could I do that ?

First of all, I would like to say that The artwork team at Fedora has done a very fantastic job. The graphics right from installation up to the desktop are just awesome. Especially the default background is very nice. Here is shot of the default Gnome Fedora 8 Desktop.

GNOME Fedora 8 Desktop

Right after the installation, I fetched the nVidia proprietary drivers from here and installed them. And those were installed successfully without giving any errors or problems. [ If you want a complete howto on installing nvidia drivers. Its here.] A reboot after the installation and compiz worked out of the box. Here is shot.

Compiz Fusion

Ok, graphics done. What now ? I just realized that there is no mp3 support. No worries. Codeina aka Codec Buddy is there. Just issue ‘codeina’ command from command line and a window like this will appear.

Codeina Audio Codec Fetcher

Check Fluendo MP3 Audio Decoder and click get selected, accept the license conditions and you’ll see that codeina is fetching the codecs. [If codeina does not fetch codecs or give error like timeout or some other network error. Try checking your proxy setting in System -> Preferences -> Internet And Network -> Network Proxy . It may help. ]

Codeina Installing MP3 Support

Ok. Now, codeina has done the job. Lets play some mp3. Note that amarok still can’t play mp3 files because it uses xine engine. So, you can choose either Totem or Rhythmbox to play your mp3 files. Here is a shot of Rhythmbox. So, Codeina also works out of the box.

Rhythmbox Playing MP3

Another major improvement in Fedora 8 in audio section is introduction or pulseaudio. Issue command ‘pulseaudio’ from command line and you will see a window like this.

Pulseaudio Device and Application Control

You can control the sound stream from different players or whatever. You can mute individual streams and can even set the default devices for certain streams through this fantastic gui.

Another good thing in Fedora 8 is Eclipse. Eclipse 3.3 is back in Fedora 8. They excluded it from Fedora 7. I am happy to see it back here in Fedora 8.

Eclipse In Fedora 8

Another utility that I found helpful is Remote Desktop utility. Launch System -> Preferences -> Internet And Network -> Remote Desktop and you’ll see a window like this.

Remote Desktop Utility

Set your preferences and now you can browse your desktop from anywhere using ‘vncviewer <yourIP>:0′. Though one call always configure vncserver to get that done. But for newbies it’ll be a great help.

Also, My wireless lan card, Ralink rt2500 WNC-0301 is detected successfully in Fedora 8. But I am not sure whether it works or not, because there is not wifi environment in my lab and I can’t check it without that. [ Anyway if your wifi card doesn’t work, here is a howto on installing Ralink rt2500 WNC-0301 using drivers from serailmonkey. ]

Another improvement is that cursor was never invisible. Up to Fedora 7, I suffered cursor invisible problem on first login. [ If you are facing the same problem, add line

Options "HWCursor" off

to “screens” section in your /etc/X11/xorg.conf file and issue ‘gdm-restart’ command. It’ll be fine afterwards. ]

The boot time has also improved significantly. My Fedora 8 boots in just 45 seconds.

These Fedora 8 Screenshots and other related to Fedora 8 can be reached here.

 

Info: Motherboard with Embedded Linux

A dull Sunday as usual. Woke up at 12:01pm and after finishing all startup jobs, came to lab at 1:00 pm. As usual, had nothing to do. Just went to slashdot to have some snacks. And what I saw over there was more than a surprise. OMG what the hell is going on. ASUS has come up with a new motherboard with embedded Linux. At first, I thought that guyz at slashdot has gone mad and just writing anything to have some news. But when I read the complete story and the review at Phoronix, it sounded something really geeky. They have embedded a Linux environment deep into the motherboard.

Asus is shipping this P5E3 deluxe motherboard with a feature called Asus Express Gate powered by SplashTop. The wonderful thing is that you can now boot into a basic Linux environment in just 7-8 seconds. Unbelievable !!! This basic Linux has a stripped down web-browser called FireFox 2.0 ( do we have any alternatives šŸ˜› ) and skype. So, you can just go over the internet in a few seconds.

Much more surprising is onboard Asus WiFi-AP @n (802.11n wireless, undoubtedly the fastest wireless till date). So, you can browse at 300mbps on wireless ( of course if the infrastructure is 802.11n). And wifi card works with embedded Linux.

The BIOS browsing is no more keyboard based. It comes with a page which you can browse with your mouse. The embedded Linux is not so lame as it may sound. It has a variety of configuration utilities which includes network configuration, screen resolution, volume control, language selection and much more.

The only bad thing is the price. It is currently priced at US $360, which is very costly for having that stripped down Linux. But with time price will certainly go down and we will hopefully see new innovations for that embedded Linux. Hope to have a terminal over there soon šŸ˜€ and it’ll be fun if we can have beryl as well šŸ˜›

Wonderful innovation šŸ˜‰

PS : No internet in my lab today :(

 

How To: Configure Wireless with Ralink (rt2500) Level One WNC 0301 in Fedora 7

If you are searching for wireless lan configuration in Fedora Core 6, a detailed description is available here. Though Fedora 7 – Moonshine detect the Ralink rt2500 Level One WNC-0301 wireless lan card, the network doesn’t work properly with default drivers. You may be able to connect sometime, but some other time it may not function properly. Because ralink drivers are not yet stable. See the discussions here. So, here is a step by step complete reference to how to make it work properly.

Step 1: Download the latest CVS release of Ralink rt2500 drivers from here.

Step 2: Unload the kernel module for rt2500 drivers

[root@bordeaux kulbirsaini] rmmod rt2500pci [Enter]

Step 3: Go to the directory /lib/modules/2.6.21-1.3194.fc7/kernel/drivers/net/wireless/mac80211/rt2x00 and take backup of the current rt2500pci driver module.

[root@bordeaux rt2x00] mv rt2500pci.ko back.rt2500pci.ko [Enter]

Step 4: Untar the download driver tar ball and change to the directory ./rt2500-cvs-XXXXXXXXXX/Module/

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[root@bordeaux Module] make [Enter]
[root@bordeaux Module] make install-fedora [Enter]

Step 5: Open /etc/modprobe.conf file and add a line

alias wlan0 rt2500

Save the file and load the rt2500 driver.

[root@bordeaux kulbirsaini] modprobe rt2500 [Enter]

Step 6: Go to the directory /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ and create a file named ifcfg-wmaster0. Copy the contents of ifcfg-wlan0 to the ifcfg-wmaster0. If you don’t have ifcfg-wlan0 file, then issue command ‘neat’ as root and add new wireless device with appropriate configurations and ifcfg-wlan0 will be created in the process.

Step 7: Activate the device, what else ???

PS1 : You can refer to my ifcfg-wlan0 and ifcfg-wmaster0 files.

PS2 : You can ask for more details on any issues in the any of the above steps.

 

Review: Fedora 7 – Moonshine

As expected, I upgraded to Fedora 7 – Moonshine yesterday. The coolest feature I noticed is that it automatically detected my Ralink WNC-0301 wireless lan card. Well, support for other wireless lan cards like ipw2100, ipw2200 and ipw3945 is also there which is I think the best feature. Because I see a lot of people around fighting with there wireless lan cards to work under Fedora Cores.

The gui is kind of improved but one more cool thing that you will notice is the theme “flying high”. The wallpapers, splash screen, login screen are improved a lot. Overall, the artwork part is worked out hardly. Default font is also nice.

A lot of media players are provided. amarok and kaffeine are included first time but amarok with no mp3 support. You have to install gstreamer and gstreamer08 plugins to make it work. The system preferences menu is totally different with similar tasks being grouped.

In addition to all that now Fedora also has some basic directories in the home directory like Documents, Music, Pictures, Videos, Downloads.

Everything else is the same with upgraded versions.

Here is a Video of my current Fedora 7 desktop.

PS0 : There seems to be some problem after installing the nvidia driver for F7. Follow the procedure here replacing everything related to fc6 by f7 and at the end after configuring your xorg.conf file make these changes

The section “Files” should be like this

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Section "Files"
	ModulePath "/usr/lib/xorg/modules,/usr/X11R6/lib/modules/"
EndSection

now restart the xserver and the nvidia will work šŸ˜€ .

For more info refer my xorg.conf for F7.

PS1 : If you are a IIITian, I suggest you not upgrade to F7 because iyum is not yet configured to cache F7 rpms and you have to install updates for your OS from the internet and that really sux. So, wait for iyum repo for F7 to be up and then upgrade.

PS2 : Pidgin has some memory leaks … its consuming 2GB virtual memory … here’s the proof … I am back to kopete again šŸ˜‰

Pidgin Memory Leak

Pidgin Memory Leak

Edit : If you are looking for wireless configuration in Fedora 7, here is a reference.

 

How To: Configure Wireless with Ralink (rt2500) Level One WNC-0301 in Fedora Core 6

Well … Yesterday I switched from Fedora Core 4 to Fedora Core 6. The main problem was the wireless lan. As I was using ndiswrapper for wlan in FC4, I tried compiling it for FC6. But FC6 doesn’t have build packages so it didn’t work out. Then I installed the kernel-devel packages from here. Now the build packages were not a problem. I installed ndiswrapper from here. Now while installing ndiswrapper it gave an error that your kernel is using 4k stack, while for windows driver you need to have a kernel with 16k stack. I googled and searched the 16k stack version for my kernel but didnt get one. I used to download 16k stack kernel from here. But 16k stack kernel is not yet out for FC6. So its almost impossible for me to get ndiswrapper to work if I dont want to mess up with the patched and all.

Then I thought of using the native drivers for rt2500 (Level One wnc-0301). I downloaded the drivers from here.
The step by step installation is here ….

Step 0

Install the kernel-devel package from the above specified site.

[root@localhost ~]# rpm -ivh kernel-devel-yourkernel.rpm

Step 1

Untar the drivers.

[root@localhost ~]# tar -xvzf rt2500-1.1.0-b4.tar.gz

Step 2

Change the directory to Module

[root@localhost ~]# cd rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module/

Step 3

compile the modules

[root@localhost ~]# make

If this gives error like this

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make[1]: Entering directory '/usr/src/kernels/2.6.18-1.2798.fc6-xen-i686'
CC [M]  /home2/Softwares/Drivers/rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module/rtmp_main.o
In file included from /home2/Softwares/Drivers/rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module/rtmp_main.c:50:
/home2/Softwares/Drivers/rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module/rt_config.h:58:40: error: linux/config.h: No such file or directory
make[2]: *** [/home2/Softwares/Drivers/rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module/rtmp_main.o] Error 1
make[1]: *** [_module_/home2/Softwares/Drivers/rt2500-1.1.0-b4/Module] Error 2
make[1]: Leaving directory '/usr/src/kernels/2.6.18-1.2798.fc6-xen-i686'
rt2500.ko failed to build!
make: *** [module] Error 1

Then open the file rt_config.h and comment the line #include<linux/config.h> and again compile by issuing make.
If you get a different error try to debug if you know c-programming a bit.
Step 4. [Do as root]
Install the module

[root@localhost ~]# make install-fedora

Step 5 [Do as root]

Configure the wlan card.

[root@localhost ~]# neat

Now select a new connection and wireless and the the Ralink driver. Thats it. Activate the wlan0.

Hope this help a bit.
More suggestions are welcome.

Edit : If you are looking for wireless configuration in Fedora 7, here is a reference.

 

Hack: Mange Fluctuating Wireless

I am trying this small script with a so called gui šŸ˜‰ . This helps managing my wireless in the extreme conditions. Just a shell script. Run the script as root otherwise it’ll not work.

Get the script here or copy the code below.

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#!/bin/bash
#
#	Author - Kulbir Saini, IIIT Hyderabad.
#	Home - http://saini.co.in/
#	KWirelessManger - Just for fun.(It works ... its not just fun).
#
 
#Give the popup life.
POPUP_LIFE="10"
#kdialog --passivepopup "Welcome to 'KWirelessManager'"  ${POPUP_LIFE} &
#Give your device name for proceeding further. It may be one of wlan0, ra0, eth0, ipw2200 etc...
WLAN_DEVICE="wlan0"
#Give your WLAN host to be connected.
WLAN_HOST="IIIT WLAN"
CONNECTED=0
while [[ 1 ]];
do
	iwlist ${WLAN_DEVICE} scanning 2> /dev/null > /tmp/iwlist.aps
	grep -e "Cell" /tmp/iwlist.aps | tr " " "\t" | cut -f15 > /tmp/iwlist.apadd
	ACCESS_POINTS_IN_RANGE=`wc -l /tmp/iwlist.apadd`
	for ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS in `cat /tmp/iwlist.apadd`
	do
		iwconfig ${WLAN_DEVICE} ap ${ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS}
		#kdialog --passivepopup "Connceting to Access Point ${ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS} ..." ${POPUP_LIFE} &
		echo "Connceting to Access Point ${ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS} ..."
		WLAN_STATUS=`service network restart | tail -1 | grep "FAILED"`
		if [[ ${WLAN_STATUS} == "" ]];
		then
			#kdialog --passivepopup "You are connected to ${WLAN_HOST}." ${POPUP_LIFE} &
			echo "You are connected to ${WLAN_HOST}."
			CONNECTED=1
			break
		else
			#kdialog --passivepopup "Failed to connect to the Access Point ${ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS} :(" ${POPUP_LIFE} &
			echo "Failed to connect to the Access Point ${ACCESS_POINT_ADDRESS} :("
			CONNECTED=0
		fi
	done
	if [[ ${CONNECTED} == 1 ]];
	then
		sleep 180;
	fi
done

Please suggest any optimization and do tell if u like it.

 

How To: Configure Wireless with Ralink (RT2500) Level One WNC 0301 in Fedora Core 4

Yesterday after a lot of trials with Fedora Core 5 to activate my wireless LAN card, I switched to Fedora Core 4, which looked much more stable than FC5. Actually with FC5, I mainly faced problems with gui , my mouse which is Microsoft USB mouse and my wlan card which is level one Ralink RT2500. In FC5, I tried both with ndiswrapper and madwifi but nothing worked out for me. Also my mouse was not working well. I can click things but the pointer was not visible like microsoft gave me a invisible mouse or this microsoft mouse don’t want to work with Linux. After installing FC4, I felt very comfortable with guis and my mouse. They worked fine. But now there were two problems. One is that FC4 was not able to detect my soundcard and the wlan was not working again. Anyway soundcard is not a big problem, as it worked in FC5, I’ll make it work with some up-gradation or things like that. But the major problem is wlan. And here goes the methods which I tried to activate my wlan card.

Method 1. With rpms

I downloaded these rpms

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madwifi-0.9.4.12-16.rhfc4.at.i386.rpm
madwifi-kmdl-2.6.11-1.1369_FC4-0.9.4.12-16.rhfc4.at.i686.rpm
madwifi-hal-kmdl-2.6.16-1.2111_FC4smp-0.9.6.0-20.rhfc4.at.i686.rpm

from the site atrpms and tried installing them but they failed the dependency /boot/vmlinuz-2.6.16-1.2111_FC4 , then i tried to find this rpm everywhere on google , rpmfind etc …. but I could not find it. Then I installed it with –nodeps option and configured according to the data given here .
But in vain.

Method 2. With ndiswrapper using Microsoft Windows XP drivers

I downloaded the ndiswrapper-1.16 from sourceforge.
I untarred it and used these commands.

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make uninstall
make
make install

Please don’t forget to the read the INSTALL and README files in the ndiswrapper-1.* directory. Then I inserted my LAN card driver cd for XP and copied the drivers directory which contains .inf and .sys files to my root directory. Then I used the commands .

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ndiswrapper -i Rt2500.INF
ndiswrapper -l
modprobe ndiswrapper
iwconfig "wlan0" key open "wep 128 bit hex key" ESSID "IIIT WLAN"
dhclient wlan0

I ran all this command and I am very happy to say that wireless LAN did not work. :) Then I ran this command

touch /etc/sysconfig/network-scripts/ifcfg-wlan0

and then edited this file. I entered all the data suggested here except that second line I wrote

DEVICE=wlan0

OK. Then i ran

neat

and edited the properties of wlan device by double clicking it and gave the 26 letters wlan key there and activated the device and it worked šŸ˜€