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Suggested Wireless Card



Scot L. Harris <webid cfl rr com> writes:
> Since I am not having much luck with the D-link DWL-G650 or the Linksys
> WPC54G wireless cards with FC1 I figure I should get a recommendation
> for something that works.
> 
> Was looking at the Proxima Orinoco 802.11a/b/g gold combocard.  Has
> anyone used this with FC1?  Does it have any restrictions?  (will it
> work with monitoring software?)

The best B wireless card is the Senao NL-2511CD 200mW card, IMHO. 
This works well with the hostap driver ( http://hostap.epitest.fi/ ) 
in client mode.  I have no recommendations on G cards, as range and
applicability for G is limited, but look at the madwifi drivers being
developed for Atheros ( http://sourceforge.net/projects/madwifi/ ).

Linux drivers for WIFI chipsets are rare.  The cheapest chipsets,
Admtek, Atmel, Realtek, Broadcom, TI, and others, are either unsupported
or incompletely supported under Linux.  So any random card chosen,
especially the cheaper ones, are likely NOT to work.  The chipsets
that are more likely to work are Cisco, Orinoco, PRISM (2, 2.5, 3)
and Atheros, from mediocre to best.  The Atheros "best" is hearsay,
based on good reports and a good team, I have no personal experience.

This spotty driver support is compounded by the fact that "manufacturers"
(that is, branded resellers of Taiwan gear) like D-Link, Netgear, and
Linksys are fond of changing hardware and chipsets without changing
model numbers.  So if you had good luck with a card bought last week,
you may not have good luck with the "same" card next week.  The only
thing you can be sure about is the FCCID, which you can use at
https://gullfoss2.fcc.gov/prod/oet/cf/eas/reports/GenericSearch.cfm
... to find out things about the card.  Sometimes you end up reading
chipset info off a card photo at that site.

You can find out more about compatability at these sites:

http://www.linux-wlan.org/docs/wlan_adapters.html.gz
http://www.seattlewireless.net/index.cgi/HardwareComparison
http://www.hpl.hp.com/personal/Jean_Tourrilhes/Linux/

On a related note, if you are looking for a Wireless Access Point,
consider the Linksys WRT54G .  This is G, and runs about $100, but
the cool thing about it is that it runs embedded Linux, most of
the code is GPL and available, and there is a growing community of 
hackers that are replacing the code in these boxes with all sorts
of replacement functionality.   So, you can reprogram the box as a
cybercafe access point, or a bridge, or a IPTABLES firewall, or ...
For more info, look at  http://www.portless.net/ewrt/  or
http://docs.sveasoft.com/SV-WRT54GHardware.html .  As always, make
sure you buy the correct version of the hardware.

Keith

-- 
Keith Lofstrom           keithl ieee org         Voice (503)-520-1993
KLIC --- Keith Lofstrom Integrated Circuits --- "Your Ideas in Silicon"
Design Contracting in Bipolar and CMOS - Analog, Digital, and Scan ICs



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