Saturday, April 29, 2006

Suse 10.1 RC-3 wireless is now working

I finally got wireless up and running, and brother, is it great. I had to find the answer via Google on a forum, though. These are the steps I used to get wirless working on my Gateway M685.
  1. Get the last full Suse 10.1 Addon ISO. The last full ISO is for RC-1, so you'll have to apply the ISO delta to create the Addon ISO for RC-3.
  2. Burn a CD from the Addon ISO for RC-3 and mount it. It's a good idea to keep the CD for other commercial packages it contains, such as Sun's Java 5.
  3. Install i586/ipw3945d-1.7.18-6.i586.rpm from the CD.
  4. Install noarch/ipw-firmware-7-10.noarch.rpm from the CD.
  5. Reboot the notebook.
Logging back in after the installation and reboot, I was finally greeted with wireless entries from the Network Manager applet. Because my wireless connection does not broadcast the SSID, I had to take the extra step of creating an entry using my SSID. Once that single, simple step was complete, a wireless connection was established and everything Just Worked.

I haven't had a chance to try Suse wireless at other locations, but from the initial view of Network Manager it appears the Linux finally has the ability to automatically detect other networks and to track multiple connections. This is the feature that Windows has had for some time, and it makes wireless laptop connectivity such a pleasure under Windows. I first experienced this capability on my Nokia 770. It's one of the few good features the 770 has. I'm glad to see it on a major distribution such as Suse. This one feature alone makes it worth upgrading to Suse 10.1.

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