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#1 2015-12-26 08:29:47

smacz
Member
Registered: 2015-12-26
Posts: 8

Broadcom Wifi

Hey guys, I'm back after working on a customized LiveUSB (using damo's stolen tutorial) with BL as the base, but using respin - a fork of remastersys. No issues with that, but I tried to use my new LiveUSB on a Lenovo ThinkPad X140e, and found out:

A Broadcom ABGN Wifi / BT4.0 card which is currently not supported by the b43 driver. Ideally, use driver broadcom-wl

Being that that's from the ArchWiki, the actual debian package is broadcom-sta-dkms. Following the instructions in the debian wiki, I can install this package on the source system (that I'm using to create the ISO), but I won't be able to test it for another week.

Searching around, I'm 99% sure that it will work, but I need to know that it's setup right for when I go to try it out.

I followed the wiki directions and ran 'modprobe wl', but I was wondering if I need to check anything in '/etc' or somewhere else to make sure that everything's included when I spin up the ISO.

Also, where the directions call to remove the other modules, I would be inclined to leave them there in case I had to boot from a different device requiring one of those others. Would that interfere with anything?

Oh yeah, and Merry Christmas you guys.

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#2 2015-12-26 11:24:06

Head_on_a_Stick
Member
From: London
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 8,759
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Re: Broadcom Wifi

smacz wrote:

I followed the wiki directions and ran 'modprobe wl', but I was wondering if I need to check anything in '/etc' or somewhere else to make sure that everything's included when I spin up the ISO.

Also, where the directions call to remove the other modules, I would be inclined to leave them there in case I had to boot from a different device requiring one of those others. Would that interfere with anything?

The `modprobe` commands are only needed to un/load modules in the running system.

As long as DKMS has built the wl module then this should be loaded automatically on boot by udev

I've never played around with ISO images though so I don't know about that.


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#3 2015-12-26 13:56:43

pvsage
Internal Affairs
Registered: 2015-09-29
Posts: 1,433

Re: Broadcom Wifi

Welcome to our new home!

smacz wrote:

Also, where the directions call to remove the other modules, I would be inclined to leave them there in case I had to boot from a different device requiring one of those others. Would that interfere with anything?

As long as they aren't stepping on each others' cues (theater expression I picked up from Buffy) and you have room on the drive, I'd leave them be.


Be excellent to each other, and...party on, dudes!
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#4 2015-12-26 16:25:58

twoion
ほやほや
Registered: 2015-08-10
Posts: 2,484

Re: Broadcom Wifi

If the module doesn't load automatically against all expectations, put its name into /etc/modules.


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#5 2015-12-26 21:50:12

smacz
Member
Registered: 2015-12-26
Posts: 8

Re: Broadcom Wifi

Perfect guys, thanks. I'll report back once I can confirm that all's good.

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#6 2015-12-27 09:09:19

smacz
Member
Registered: 2015-12-26
Posts: 8

Re: Broadcom Wifi

One thing that I was able to catch, is that when installing `broadcom-sta-dkms`, it blacklists all of the other drivers that the wiki says to `modprobe -r`.

So when I tested my updated ISO on a laptop that needs the `b43` module, it didn't show any network choices in the Network Manager applet! Of course a quick `modprobe b43` changed that, but I wanted it to be automatic.

So I found `/etc/modprobe.d/broadcom-sta-dkms.conf` and deleted it, as the entire contents were just blacklisting all of the other drivers. Now it gives me the wifi network options just fine.

I still have yet to test it on the lenovo, and I'll update when I do.

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#7 2015-12-28 01:41:15

smacz
Member
Registered: 2015-12-26
Posts: 8

Re: Broadcom Wifi

Alright, I was able to test it on the Lenovo, and it didn't work OOTB.

However, there is a way to get it working.

sudo rmmod b44 b43 b43legacy ssb brcmsmac bcma wl
sudo modprobe wl

I know that some of those aren't included, and it'll spit out an error as to which ones aren't, but that sequence works. (if it ain't broke...)

FWIW, I think bcma is being loaded because that's what the bluetooth on that laptop uses, which conflicts with wl. But I had to unload (at least) both and then reload wl. I'm not sure if this breaks bluetooth, because - in my situation - there's no need to use bluetooth.

Either way, that seems to work, so I just added a menu entry in the main menu to call a script that does exactly that and called it a day. It'd be cool if I could get that automated at startup, but I don't know how to parse syslog to see if that's needed or not. (read: I'm so done f***ing with this)

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