cheap ubuntu laptop with wireless that works right "out of the box".

Christopher Copeland chrcop at
Fri Feb 1 18:13:54 UTC 2008

On 31 Jan 2008, at 14:58, Derek Broughton wrote:

> Christopher Copeland wrote:
>> I never said everything needs to be open-source, but given the choice
>> I'll prefer a driver that is.
> Sooner or later when you're dealing with NICs you get down to a  
> level of
> closed source - it might be firmware and it might be an NDIS driver,  
> but it
> really makes no difference in the long run.

And when I say I don't feel everything needs to be open source that  
means not every driver and not the entire contents of any specific  
driver. I don't mind firmware blobs as long as the driver as a whole  
does what I need it to do. NDIS can't do that.

> I confess to have only used 3 different wireless chipsets (I keep  
> meaning to
> try out the D-Link that my wife used to use on her now-deceased  
> Windows
> machine).  One (intel) worked fine with a native driver.  Two (a TI
> acx1100 - I think - and this one, a BCM94311MCG) worked only  
> intermittently
> with native drivers, but flawlessly with ndiswrapper.

I guess this points more to the fact that I seek out a card that will  
work natively.. and of the 3 manufacturers you mentioned intel is the  
one that gives the most linux support..

>> This includes long distance point to point connections,
> 1000ft to the router connected to my satellite uplink...

Not a satellite uplink in my case.. but a longer LOS connection :-)

> I accept there are times it may _not_ be sufficient to use  
> ndiswrapper, but
> not for most people.

Well that's my argument, most people are fine with ndiswrapper but I'm  
not, and that is why I prefer native drivers. :-)

> That was my choice with my last laptop - I specifically ordered a  
> Dell with
> an intel card.  Then Dell refused to honour the warranty I paid for,  
> and I
> bought a cheap NIC that worked with ndiswrapper.  Next laptop, I just
> decided it wasn't worth the aggravation, and bought cheap, planning  
> to use
> the internal wireless if it worked, or the cheap NIC if it didn't.

I think that reflects more on Dell than on the state of linux wireless  
driver options.

> They're not.  They're releasing hardware that works with a known  
> software
> interface.  I will accept only that if they haven't actually tested  
> it with
> ndiswrapper and provided installation instructions for Linux systems  
> using
> ndiswrapper that they really couldn't care less about Linux, but imo  
> if
> they've done that much they're playing nice.

Our opinions will just have to differ on how nicely they are actually  
Christopher Copeland

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