Monday, June 23, 2008

Mandriva 2008 - How to configure Broadcom Corporation BCM94311MCG wlan mini-PCI (rev 02)

configuring Broadcom Corporation BCM94311MCG wlan mini-PCI (rev 02) in mandriva 2008Mandriva 2008 is a big release in controversial ways. For mandy 2008 some people say it as the best release while many others deny. But I had a bad experience and I was waiting for my long beloved PCLinuxOS 2008. Why? Due to its problems in configuring Broadcom Corporation BCM94311MCG wlan mini-PCI (rev 02) that came with my compaq notebook. But good heavens, it's all resolved and I am in no hurry for PCLinuxOS 2008. Well, it will be a candid release when it will release. For now Mandriva 2008 is the best release for me.


Let's go back to the problematic past. When I first installed Mandriva 2008 Powerpack at home I had no problem at all. It readily detected and configured my ethernet, graphics, sound and all that. The startup and shutdown also became blazing fast after shedding a little fat off installation. The real problem came at office when I had to connect either to Linkys WPA2 wlan or MTNL unsecure wlan. To my astonishment, though it shows it has bcm43xx module installed it did not move at all.

Then I tried to connect to web via: mcc>>network & internet>>setup a new network interface>>wireless, it asked for a firmware file and i pointed it to my windows driver (bcmwl5.inf) it did configured. But unfortunately it took too long to shutdown and/startup the system after installing this firmware. There the problem did not end. After each reboot I had to reconfigure the wlan.


Then I came to know from that actually support for some Broadcom wlan cards in Mandriva is not hassle-free, because the native bcm43xx driver does not work for this card but instead keeps interfering with the windows drivers (or any suitable driver that you pulled in).


Anybody who is using Mandriva 2008 and having this broadcom card should follow these steps to get their wlan card working perfectly.

  1. uninstall bcm43xx-fwcutter
  2. blacklist ssb and bcm43xx in /etc/modprobe.d/blacklist-compat
  3. comment out bcm43xx in modprobe.conf
  4. reboot the system
  5. go to mcc>>network & internet>>setup a new network interface>>wireless
  6. select bcmwl5.inf from your windows partition or from any other location
  7. fill in your wireless internet access details
That's it. Now you can breath easy.


suniel said...

does mandriva 2008.1 has the same problem with that broadcom wlan card?

frank392 said...

Great but what happen if you do not have a windows partition?

manmath sahu said...

Hi Frank,

If you don't have a windows partition you can still get that bcmwl5.inf. Google it and there are many websites that offer windows drivers for this card. But you have to extract the inf file from the windows driver installer.

Another good source is to visit the pc/notebook manufacturers a website for the said driver and get it from there.

Thanks for posting comment on my blog.

kumar said...

Your post sounds useful, but i'm not using windows vista, in which Ndiswrapper doesn't work.
What to do next?

manmath sahu said...

Hi Kumar,

You can extract the *.inf and *.sys file from the windows wirelss card installer to a folder, and point ndiswrapper to that folder. It will configure wlan. There are several freewares available to extract *.exe files. Just google a while.

Best wishes.

How about this