Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Intel Wireless and openSUSE 10.3

I've worked on two notebooks recently where the built-in Intel Wireless did not work. Typically, I resorted to using a pair of USB 802.11g adapters I purchased from Zyxel. In this case, the chipset of the USB devices is ZD1211RW. I plug them in and they work perfectly.

However, since one of the laptops was destined for a new user of Linux, I thought - why should this person have to buy/borrow an adapter when the (well-regarded!) Intel wireless is built in?

The built-in stuff seemed to work but it was never able to associate, and repeated attempts merely caused the device to go off into Never-Never Land and Never Come Back.

A brief bit of Googlin' brought me a possible answer - there are two drivers which appear to work, but only one of them actually does. I don't know (or care) about the details in this case, so suffice it to say that if you are having a problem making your Intel Wireless go, and you are running openSUSE 10.3 or can translate the appropriate commands, try this:

rpm -e ipw3945-kmp-default ipw3945d

and make sure you have iwl3945-ucode and iwlwifi-kmp-default installed (along with all dependencies, of course).

Best of Luck!

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