Some additional instructions

The following is some extra instructions and installation experiences sent to me by Anthony Butler. Thanks Anthony.

Date: 07 Mar. 2006


I initially used the etch (testing) installer so that I could use recent kernel versions with the IDE-DMA bug fixed. This approach failed due to multiple other problems with the etch-B1 installer (tar needed manually installing for dpkg to work, grub config failed, second stage installer was a mess) In the end I installed the sarge-amd64 base system then dist-upgraded to etch and kernel with the DMA bug fixed (kernel-image-2.6.15-amd). For others I would recommend the very slow sarge install (without DMA) rather than a broken install from etch-B1 installer.


I got the broadcom wireless card to work ndiswrapper. This required getting the latest stable version of ndiswrapper (1.10) and building for amd64. I'm using kernel-image-2.6.15-amd64.

1) Get the winXP acer 64bit broadcom driver

$ wget

2) get and extract the latest ndiswrapper

$ wget
$ tar vxzf ndiswrapper-1.10.tar.gz

This source archive contains ndiswrapper and rules for building a debian i386 binary package.

3) add amd64 to the debian build rules. ndiswrapper is supposed to build on amd64 so I'm not sure why the debian ruleset doesn't contain this architecture. Its certainly SEEMS to compile + install fine without furthur modification and I have a functioning wifi. To change the build rules you alter the files "debian/control.moudles" "debain/control.source" "debian/control.utils" changing the list of supported architectures. Initially there is a line in each file just containsing "i386", add "amd64" to the end of that line.

$ cd ndiswrapper-1.10/debian/
$ nano control.source control.utils control.moudles
$ cd ..

4) build the two ndiswrapper packages

$ fakeroot debian/rules binary-modules
$ fakeroot debian/rules binary-utils
$ cd ..

5) install the packages you just built

$ sudo dpkg -i ndiswrapper-modules-*.deb ndiswrapper-utils-*.deb

6) install windows driver

$ sudo ndiswrapper -i /path/to/window/driver.inf

7) force the driver to recognise the card. (pciid 4319 not 4318) (I'm not sure why the driver doesn't recognise the card when it does under windows.)

$ sudo ndiswrapper -d 14E4:4319 bcmwl5

8) write a "/etc/modprobe.d/" entry

$ sudo ndiswrapper -m

9) add wlan0 to /etc/network/interfaces. You need to load the ndiswrapper module when you bring up the interface. The section below does this.

iface wlan0 inet dhcp
 pre-up grep -q ndiswrapper /proc/modules || modprobe ndiswrapper

10) Configure the interface with ifplugd and wpa_supplicant as you suggested on your page.

-- Anthony Butler