Translation(s): Deutsch - English - Français - Italiano - Português Brasileiro

http://www.debian.org/logos/openlogo-nd-50.png http://www.debian.org/Pics/debian.png

Portal/IDB/logo_portal.png Welcome to Debian Wireless Fidelity


Portal/IDB/icon-wifi-32x32.png This portal deals with the installation and configuration of WiFi devices. Device installation is essentially a two-part process: 1) installing the driver (also called a module) and 2) setting up your WiFi interface.

A WiFi device operates on an electronic chip called a "chipset". We can find the same chipset in several different devices. Consequently, the driver/module for one chipset will work for all wireless devices using that chipset.

Free software based systems such as Debian depend on the cooperation between manufacturers and developers to produce and maintain quality drivers and firmware. Drivers and firmware are what determine if and how well your hardware works.

Debian's Social Contract mandates the freeing of the distribution. In practice this means manufacturers are required to cooperate by releasing specifications and free drivers that can be worked on by the community. Newer versions of Debian (6+) do not include non-free drivers or firmware.

Non-free drivers and firmware are produced by companies refusing or unable to cooperate with the free software community. With non-free drivers and firmware support is often unavailable or severely strained. For instance features are often left out, bugs go unfixed, and what support does exist from the manufacture is fleeting.

By encouraging good social practices the community is able to support end-users. Complex installation procedures are no longer required and support continues long after a product has been discontinued.

Currently there are only a few modern wifi chipsets readily available that work with free software systems. For USB wifi devices this list includes the Realtek RTL8187B chipset (802.11G) and the Atheros AR9170 chipset (802.11N). For Mini PCIe all cards with an Atheros chipset are supported.

Wifi has always been a problem for free software users. USB Wifi cards are becoming less free. With the older 802.11G standard many USB wifi cards had free drivers and did not require non-free firmware. With 802.11N there is only one chipset on the market from Atheros which is completely free.

One company which specialises in free software and sells 802.11N USB wifi cards, ThinkPenguin.com, has indicated the availability of free software supported 802.11N USB wifi cards is disappearing. Solving this problem will require more demand than currently exists. Next time you purchase a piece of hardware ask yourself if it is free software compatible.

Continuing on, a WiFi interface is an Ethernet interface which also provides WiFi-specific configuration parameters. These parameters are controlled using the iwconfig program.

www.debian.org/doc/manuals/debian-reference/ch05 - Debian Reference Chapter 5 - Network setup

Prerequisites

If these are missing, you can install these via:

aptitude install wireless-tools

…and similar

Install Driver

Before you buy, verify your intended device is supported by an available Linux driver. A good indication of support is Tux being displayed on the product's packaging.

This section presents general lists of WiFi devices (grouped by host interface) and sorted by driver/module name. Each list has two main elements: the module name and the chipset(s) it supports. Known unsupported chipsets are at the end of each list.

If available, a help page link will provide you with further information. We recommend you read the associated help page, as some devices may require to be supplied with microcode (aka "firmware") before they can be used.

For an indication of support with a specific device, see the Wireless Adapter Chipset Directory.

PCI Devices

See HowToIdentifyADevice/PCI for more information

module name

Device name(s)

help page

free (?)

acx-mac80211

Texas Instruments chipsets (ACX100/TNETW1100, ACX111/TNETW1130)

acx

X-(

adm8211

ADMtek ADM8211 chipset

adm8211

{OK}

airo

?airo

?

arlan

?arlan

?

ath5k

Atheros Communications chipsets (AR5210, AR5211, AR5212, AR5213, AR5414, AR2413, AR242x)

ath5k

{OK}

ath9k

Atheros Communications 802.11n chipsets

ath9k

{OK}

atmel_pci

Atmel at76c506 chipset

atmel_pci

X-(

b43
b43legacy

Broadcom chipsets

bcm43xx

X-(

brcm80211
brcmsmac

Broadcom chipsets (BCM4313, BCM43224, BCM43225)

brcm80211

X-(

hostap_pci
hostap_plx

Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 chipsets

hostap

{OK} / X-( 1

ipw2100
ipw2200

Intel PRO/Wireless 2100
Intel PRO/Wireless 2200
Intel PRO/Wireless 2915

ipw2200

X-(

iwl3945
iwl4965

Intel PRO/Wireless 3945
Intel PRO/Wireless 4965

iwlegacy

X-(

iwlagn
iwlwifi

Intel Wireless WiFi Link
Intel Wireless-N
Intel Advanced-N
Intel Ultimate-N

iwlwifi

X-(

mwl8k

Marvell chipsets (88W8363, 88W8366, 88W8687)

mwl8k

X-(

orinoco_nortel
orinoco_plx
orinoco_tmd

Lucent/Agere Hermes and Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 chipsets

orinoco

{OK} / X-( 2

p54pci

Intersil Prism54 chipsets (ISL3877, ISL3880, ISL3886, ISL3890)

prism54

X-(

r8192_pci
r8192e_pci

Realtek RTL8192E chipset

rtl819x

X-(

rt2400pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2400/RT2460, RT2401/RT2460)

rt2400pci

{OK}

rt2500pci

Ralink RT2500/RT2560 chipset

WiFi/rt2500

{OK}

rt2800pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2760, RT2790, RT2860, RT2890, RT3060, RT3062, RT3090, RT3091, RT3092, RT3390, RT3562, RT3592, RT5390)

rt2800pci

X-(

rt2860sta

Ralink chipsets (RT2760/RT2790/RT2860/RT2890, RT3090/RT3091/RT3092)

rt2860sta

X-( {i}

rt61pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2501/2561, RT2600/RT2661)

rt61pci

X-(

rtl8180

Realtek chipsets (RTL8180, RTL8185)

rtl818x

{OK}

r8187se
rtl8187se

Realtek RTL8187SE chipset

rtl818x

{OK}

rtl8192ce

Realtek chipsets (RTL8188CE, RTL8192CE)

rtl819x

X-(

rtl8192de

Realtek chipsets (RTL8188DE, RTL8192DE)

rtl819x

X-(

rtl8192se

Realtek chipsets (RTL8191SE, RTL8192SE)

rtl819x

X-(

strip

?strip

?

wavelan

?wavelan

?

wl

Broadcom chipsets (BCM4311, BCM4312, BCM4313, BCM4321, BCM4322, BCM43224, BCM43225, BCM43227, BCM43228)

wl

X-(

Atheros Communications AR5005VL (AR5513) chipset [168c:0020]

NdisWrapper

{X}

InProComm IPN 2120 chipset [17fe:2120]

NdisWrapper

{X}

InProComm IPN 2220 chipset [17fe:2220]

NdisWrapper

{X}

Marvell Libertas 88W8335 chipset [11ab:1faa]

NdisWrapper

{X}

WavePlus WP1200 chipset [17f7:0001]

NdisWrapper

{X}

Legend :
{OK} = OK ; {X} Unsupported(No Driver) ; /!\ = Error (Couldn't get it working); [?] Unknown, Not Test ; [-] Not-applicable
{i} = Configuration Required; X-( = Only works with a proprietary driver and/or firmware

USB Devices

See HowToIdentifyADevice/USB for more information

module name

Device name(s)

help page

free (?)

acx-mac80211

Texas Instruments chipsets (ACX100USB, TNETW1450)

acx

X-(

ar5523

Atheros Communications chipsets (AR5005UG, AR5005UX)

ar5523

X-(

ar9170usb

Atheros Communications AR9170 chipset

ar9170usb

{OK} / X-( 3

at76c50x-usb
at76_usb

Atmel chipsets (at76c503, at76c505, at76c505a)

at76_usb

X-(

ath9k_htc

Atheros Communications chipsets (AR9271, AR7010)

ath9k_htc

{OK} 4 / X-(

carl9170

Atheros Communications AR9170 chipset

carl9170

{OK}

orinoco_usb

Lucent/Agere Hermes chipset

orinoco_usb

X-(

p54usb

Intersil Prism54 chipsets (ISL3886, ISL3887)

prism54

X-(

prism2_usb

Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 chipsets

linux-wlan-ng

{OK}

r8712u
r8192s_usb

Realtek chipsets (RTL8188SU, RTL8191SU, RTL8192SU)

rtl819x

X-(

r8192u_usb

Realtek RTL8192U chipset

rtl819x

X-(

rndis_wlan

Broadcom BCM4320 chipset

rndis_wlan

{OK}

rt2500usb

Ralink RT2500USB/RT2571 chipset

rt2500usb

{OK}

rt2800usb

Ralink chipsets (RT2070, RT2770, RT2870, RT3070, RT3071, RT3072, RT3370, RT3572, RT5370)

rt2800usb

X-(

rt2870sta

Ralink chipsets (RT2770/RT2870, RT3070/RT3071/RT3072)

rt2870sta

X-(

rt73usb

Ralink RT2501USB/RT2571W chipset

WiFi/rt73

X-(

rtl8187

Realtek chipsets (RTL8187, RTL8187B)

rtl818x

{OK}

rtl8192cu

Realtek chipsets (RTL8188CE-VAU, RTL8188CUS, RTL8192CU)

rtl819x

X-(

usb8xxx

Marvell Libertas 88W8388 chipset

libertas

X-(

vt6656_stage

VIA VT6656 chipset

vt665x

X-(

zd1201

ZyDAS ZD1201 chipset

zd1201

X-(

zd1211rw

ZyDAS ZD1211/1211B and Atheros AR5007UG chipsets

zd1211rw

X-(

Netgear MA111v2 [0846:4230]

NdisWrapper

{X}

Netgear WN111v1 [0846:9000]

NdisWrapper

{X}

TRENDware TEW-424UB v2 [0457:0163]

NdisWrapper

{X}

PC Card (PCMCIA) Devices

See HowToIdentifyADevice/PC_Card for more information

module name

Device name(s)

help page

free (?)

acx-mac80211

Texas Instruments chipsets (ACX100/TNETW1100, ACX111/TNETW1130)

acx

X-(

adm8211

ADMtek ADM8211 chipset

adm8211

{OK}

airo_cs

?airo_cs

?

ath5k

Atheros Communications chipsets (AR5210, AR5211, AR5212, AR5213, AR5414)

ath5k

{OK}

ath9k

Atheros Communications 802.11n chipsets

ath9k

{OK}

atmel_cs

Atmel chipsets (at76c502x, at76c504x)

atmel_cs

X-(

b43
b43legacy

Broadcom chipsets

bcm43xx

X-(

hostap_cs

Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 chipsets

hostap

{OK} / X-( 1

netwave_cs

?netwave cs

?

orinoco_cs

Lucent/Agere Hermes and Intersil Prism 2/2.5/3 chipsets

orinoco

{OK} / X-( 2

p54pci

Intersil Prism54 chipsets (ISL3877, ISL3880, ISL3886, ISL3890)

prism54

X-(

ray_cs

?ray cs

?

rt2400pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2400/RT2460, RT2401/RT2460)

rt2400pci

{OK}

rt2500pci

Ralink RT2500/RT2560 chipset

WiFi/rt2500

{OK}

rt2800pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2760, RT2790, RT2860, RT2890, RT3060, RT3062, RT3090, RT3091, RT3092, RT3390, RT3562, RT3592, RT5390)

rt2800pci

X-(

rt2860sta

Ralink chipsets (RT2760/RT2790/RT2860/RT2890, RT3090/RT3091/RT3092)

rt2860sta

X-(

rt61pci

Ralink chipsets (RT2501/2561, RT2600/RT2661)

rt61pci

X-(

rtl8180

Realtek chipsets (RTL8180, RTL8185)

rtl818x

{OK}

spectrum_cs

Symbol Spectrum24 Trilogy chipsets

orinoco

{OK} / X-( 5

wavelan_cs

?wavelan/cs

?

wl

Broadcom chipsets (BCM4311, BCM4312, BCM4313, BCM4321, BCM4322)

wl

X-(

wl3501_cs

?wl3501/cs

?

Atheros Communications AR5005VL (AR5513) chipset [168c:0020]

NdisWrapper

{X}

InProComm IPN 2120 chipset [17fe:2120]

NdisWrapper

{X}

Marvell Libertas 88W8335 chipset [11ab:1faa]

NdisWrapper

{X}

WavePlus WP1200 chipset [17f7:0002]

NdisWrapper

{X}

ZyDAS ZD1201 chipset (16-bit PC Cards)

n/a

{X}

Routers

module name

Device name(s)

help page

free (?)

source code

Linksys WRT54GC

Wikipedia; it isn't similar to the WRT54G; The WRT54GC is based on the Sercomm IP806SM reference design the same chipset as the current Linksys WTY54G the Airlink101 AR315W, Alloy WRT2454AP, and Hawking HWR54G. You also can use NdisWrapper

X-(

Configure Interface

Your wireless network interface can be configured using a connection manager or Debian's network interface configuration file (/etc/network/interfaces).

Graphical Network Connection Tools:

Network Manager for GNOME (network-manager) or wicd

For more information, please see WiFi/HowToUse.

Resources


CategoryPortal | CategoryNetwork

  1. Prism3 SSF devices require non-free firmware from userspace. (1 2)

  2. For WPA support on Hermes-based devices, non-free firmware from userspace is required. Non-WPA usage and Prism chipsets (except Prism 3 SSF) use firmware stored in flash memory. (3 4)

  3. Binary-only and GPL firmware available. (5)

  4. Binary-only and BSD/MIT firmware available. (6)

  5. For devices without flash memory (eg. Intel WPC2011BWW), non-free firmware from userspace is required. (7)