Mint 13 Mate - wireless network on Dell Latitude 2100

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Mint 13 Mate - wireless network on Dell Latitude 2100

Postby taylorkh » Thu May 31, 2012 9:43 am

The machine in question is a Dell Latitude 2100 netbook. It came from the factory with Ubuntu 9.04 and has been running Ubuntu 10.04 for the past couple of years. Today I decided to install Mint 13 Mate which I have been playing with in VMWare and seems to have a nice simple interface.

The install on the netbook went fine. I installed the "restricted" driver for the Broadcomm wireless card just as I had done previously with Ubuntu. I configured the wireless connection under networking by supplying the SSID (which is not broadcast) and password from my wireless router. I set the connection to WPA2 personal as the router is WPA2. The issues I have noticed are:

1 - the wireless connection does not connect
2 - WPA2 personal reverts to WPA personal

I changed the router to WPA and still no connection.

I installed Ubuntu 12.04 (from which Mint 13 is derived I think?) and allowed it to install the restricted driver. I configured the network connection to my wireless router and it works fine.

The driver package is bcmwl-kernel-source_5.100.82.38+bdcom-0ubuntu6.1_i386.deb in both cases. The files are identical on Ubuntu and Mint Mate.

I uninstalled and reinstalled the driver but Mint still does not connect. It still reverts WPA2 to WPA.

I noticed that in Ubuntu I had to add a new connection for wireless. Mint seems to know that there is a wireless device and I am only allow to change its properties. I changed Mint to "roaming" mode but that simply cleared the properties and I could not edit anything.

I am at the moment installing Mint 13 Cinnamon and will report what I find. I will then try some brute force investigation which I used to find a network bug in the CentOS (Red Hat) 6 installer.

In the mean time I would appreciate any advice.



Update 1 - I installed Mint 13 Cinnamon and configured the wireless network via the Network app from the menu. It did NOT work. I then opened a networking dialog from the icon in the notification bar and pointed that to the wireless network configuration previously created. It DID work :mrgreen: So now I am restoring my Mate backup to the netbook. The network configuration screens are much different but I will see if there is a dialog which can be raised from the network notification icon and see what I can do there. I will update when I have more info.

Update 2 - I was able to create a wireless connection from a dialog launched from the network notification icon. But it does not work. I rebooted and upon examining syslog I found the following line
May 31 10:21:21 taylor13 NetworkManager[443]: nm-ifupdown-connection.c.100 - invalid connection read from /etc/network/interfaces: (1) proto
/etc/network/interfaces shows
auto lo
iface lo inet loopback

iface wlan0 inet dhcp
wpa-psk (a long key)
wpa-driver wext
wpa-key-mgmt WPA-PSK
wpa-proto WPA2
wpa-ssid (the correct name of my router)

auto wlan0
Let me try and compare this with what I had in Mint Cinnamon - but it will take a while as I need to reinstall. I need a couple of these machines :(

Update 2a - I deleted the offending lines from /etc/network/interfaces and rebooted. I do NOT get the error in syslog. Nor do I get a wireless connection. I deleted and recreated the wireless entity using the dialog from the network notifier. NO information was written to /etc/network/interfaces. But still no wireless connection. It looks like the offending entry was created by mate-network-admin. I guess I need to file a bug against that program.

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Re: Mint 13 Mate - wireless network on Dell Latitude 2100

Postby taylorkh » Thu May 31, 2012 2:25 pm

I have finally solved this. I will post a more generic thread explaining what I did as it may well apply to other wireless issues. Look for the subject "Broadcomm wireless on Mint 13 Mate".


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Broadcomm wireless on Mint 13 Mate

Postby taylorkh » Thu May 31, 2012 2:58 pm

I had posted a previous thread about my attempts to get wireless networking working on a Dell Latitude 2100. To summarize the issue... I installed Mint 13 Mate and allowed it to download and install the Broadcomm driver. I tried to create the wireless connection using mate-network-admin (Networking app from the Menu; Administration). This created entries in /etc/network/interfaces which caused issues on boot. I confirmed that the identical Broadcomm driver worked OK on Mint 13 Cinnamon and Ubuntu 12.04 (from which Mint 13 is derived). Here step by step is how I managed to get wireless networking working on Mint 13 Mate:

1 - Connected the netbook to my router by an Ethernet cable
2 - Performed a clean install of Mint 13 Mate
3 - Had a look at the network situation as follows
Right click on the network icon in the notification area (which is nm-applet) and observed the following
Enable Networking was checked
Enable Wireless was checked
Connection Information showed me the details of the wired connection
Edit Connections took me to a dialog which showed
Wired tab - Wired connection 1 present
Wireless tab - no entries
4 - From the Menu; Preferences; Additional Drivers I downloaded and installed the Broadcomm driver. For reference the file is bcmwl-kernel-source_5.100.82.38+bdcom-0ubuntu6.1_i386.deb
5 - Rebooted to complete the installation of the driver.
6 - Right clicked on the network icon in the notification area and selected Edit connections.
7 - Selected the Wireless tab and pressed the + Add button. I supplied the following data
Connection name" Wireless connection 1" (the default which was shown)
SSID: Luca$Electric (the name of my router - British car fans will understand this :lol: ) This is not broadcast by the router
Mode: Infrastructure
I moved to the Wireless Security tab and set:
Security: WPA and WPA2 Personal
Password: (the appropriate password for my router/network)
Finally I saved the connection and closed the dialogs. I still did not have a connection. So...
8 - I again Right Clicked on the network icon in the notification area and this time I clicked Connect to hidden wireless network.

Behold - I was connected!!! :mrgreen: :mrgreen: :mrgreen:

9 - Disconnected the Ethernet cable and rebooted. I was again and automagically connected to my wireless network.

n.b. The option to "Connect to hidden wireless network" is no longer present when I right click on the network icon in the notification area.

If you are having trouble connecting a Broadcomm or any other wireless card in Mint 13 Mate consider trying these steps. Do NOT use the Menu; Administration; Network program. It doesn't work and thinking back it does not work in Ubuntu either going back at least to 9.04.

Hope this helps someone.


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Re: Broadcomm wireless on Mint 13 Mate

Postby Oscar799 » Fri Jun 01, 2012 3:32 am

Threads merged - same OP,same question
"Don't fix it if it ain't broken,don't break it if you can't fix it" Husse
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