Using Ndiswrapper with Proprietary Wireless Drivers

First of all, my network card is a Broadcom 802.11b/g WLAN pci card built-in in my laptop P4 Compaq Presario 2568. I didn’t found Linux kernel drivers for it, so I used the drivers of my WinXP installation.

What I needed to have it working was basically:

  • Install the package WirelessTools
  • Get the Win drivers for the wireless device and the .inf file correspondent
  • Install the ndiswrapper program
  • Use ndiswrapper to install the driver. This is the easy part, just run:
ndiswrapper -i DRIVER.inf
ndiswrapper -m

as gobo.

  • Use WirelessTools to configure the interface and to find an wireless network available
  • Use ifconfig to open the interface and DHCP to configure the connection.
  • Browse the web

You can automate some of this by adding a line to /System/Settings/modprobe.conf of install wlan0 modprobe ndiswrapper && iwconfig wlan0 … (put your usual commands here, with && between) and then adding wlan0 to /System/Settings/BootOptions with the right config.