Wifi busted

October 23, 2005

Ever since my trip to Korea, the wireless on my Linux lappy has been wacked out. It drops the connection like every 5 minutes, even when the router is right in front of it and every other machine in the room is reporting 100% signal strength. The issue seems to be that the box does not see the connection at all, not that it detects signal but can’t connect. Therefore, once the signal gets dropped, attempts to reconnect via iwconfig will fail. Sometimes hibernating makes things better; but sometimes it results in a “No such device” error on ifup. Rebooting always causes the machine to detect wifi signal again, although it goes out 5 minutes later. I have not made any software or configuration changes recently that should affect the wifi subsystem. What do you guys think… is it my card? Antenna? Kernel modules?

Meanwhile, my new and unloved iBook is sitting here with perfect connectivity, power management, and shiny lickable buttons on its gorgeous apps. It even autodetected my wireless printer last night. It’s hard not to project a certain smugness onto the damn thing, although I realize that’s utterly moronic.

Since my last go-round with a Mac, I’ve found a couple of new projects that rock. I’m using Adium instead of Fire now, because I can’t resist the silly ducks. My previous emacs was a bit too prone to crashing, so I’m trying out Aquamacs. And of course NeoOffice is the answer to the curses of anyone who had to use OpenOffice under X11 on a Mac.

One Response to “Wifi busted”

  1. CW Says:

    It’s almost certainly the driver for the wireless NIC. I’ve had this with various drivers and various cards. The driver code is pretty grossly hacked for a lot of the chipsets out there, and sometimes it just goes into a funk, or a loop. You need to unload and reload the driver modules, then reconfigure the NIC with iwconfig. It happened so much to me that I wrote scripts to recycle the drivers when they started acting up. For pcmcia wireless cards, sometimes a “service pcmcia restart” will do it, but if you have built-in wireless, you’ll have to recycle the driver modules directly. If the drivers are compiled into the kernel, then you’ll have to reboot, unless you recompile and make them modules.

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