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No WiFi operation on Debian Linux

Discussion in 'Linux and Unix' started by jkwilborn, Feb 13, 2013.

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  1. jkwilborn

    jkwilborn Thread Starter

    Feb 13, 2013
    Hello... Last December I installed Debian Linux 6.0.6 on my home built i5-3450 quad core computer. It installed ok, but it did not find the TP-Link TL-WDN4800 WiFi card. This card has an Atheros 9380 Chipset for it's internal operation and I chose it because, not only did it state that Debian supported this chipset but others have stated that it works on their systems.

    I installed from a commercially created Debian installation DVD.

    The manufacturer confirmed "The Chipset is Atheros AR9380." Copied from their e-mail.

    I can see it with the code of "lspci -v", I believe, and I get

    03:00.0 Network controller: Atheros Communications Inc. AR9300 Wireless LAN adaptor (rev 01)
    Subsystem: Atheros Communications Inc. Device 3112
    Control: I/O+ Mem+ BusMaster+ SpecCycle- MemWINV- VGASnoop- ParErr- Stepping- SERR- FastB2B- DisINTx-
    Status: Cap+ 66MHz- UDF- FastB2B- ParErr- DEVSEL=fast >TAbort- <TAbort- <MAbort- >SERR- <PERR- INTx-
    Latency: 0, Cache Line Size: 64 bytes
    Interrupt: pin A routed to IRQ 10
    Region 0: Memory at f7c00000 (64-bit, non-prefetchable)
    Expansion ROM at f7c20000 [disabled]
    Capabilities: [40] Power Management version 3
    Flags: PMEClk- DSI- D1+ D2- AuxCurrent=375mA PME(D0+,D1+,D2-,D3hot+,D3cold-)
    Status: D0 NoSoftRst- PME-Enable- DSel=0 DScale=0 PME-
    Capabilities: [50] MSI: Enable- Count=1/4 Maskable+ 64bit+
    Address: 0000000000000000 Data: 0000
    Masking: 00000000 Pending: 00000000
    Capabilities: [70] Express (v2) Endpoint, MSI 00
    DevCap: MaxPayload 128 bytes, PhantFunc 0, Latency L0s <1us, L1 <8us
    ExtTag- AttnBtn- AttnInd- PwrInd- RBE+ FLReset-
    DevCtl: Report errors: Correctable- Non-Fatal- Fatal- Unsupported-
    RlxdOrd- ExtTag- PhantFunc- AuxPwr- NoSnoop-
    MaxPayload 128 bytes, MaxReadReq 512 bytes
    DevSta: CorrErr- UncorrErr- FatalErr- UnsuppReq- AuxPwr- TransPend-
    LnkCap: Port #0, Speed 2.5GT/s, Width x1, ASPM L0s L1, Latency L0 <2us, L1 <64us
    ClockPM- Surprise- LLActRep- BwNot-
    LnkCtl: ASPM Disabled; RCB 64 bytes Disabled- Retrain- CommClk+
    ExtSynch- ClockPM- AutWidDis- BWInt- AutBWInt-
    LnkSta: Speed 2.5GT/s, Width x1, TrErr- Train- SlotClk+ DLActive- BWMgmt- ABWMgmt-
    DevCap2: Completion Timeout: Not Supported, TimeoutDis+
    DevCtl2: Completion Timeout: 50us to 50ms, TimeoutDis-
    LnkCtl2: Target Link Speed: 2.5GT/s, EnterCompliance- SpeedDis-, Selectable De-emphasis: -6dB
    Transmit Margin: Normal Operating Range, EnterModifiedCompliance- ComplianceSOS-
    Compliance De-emphasis: -6dB
    LnkSta2: Current De-emphasis Level: -6dB
    Capabilities: [100 v1] Advanced Error Reporting
    UESta: DLP- SDES- TLP- FCP- CmpltTO- CmpltAbrt- UnxCmplt- RxOF- MalfTLP- ECRC- UnsupReq- ACSViol-
    UEMsk: DLP- SDES- TLP- FCP- CmpltTO- CmpltAbrt- UnxCmplt- RxOF- MalfTLP- ECRC- UnsupReq- ACSViol-
    UESvrt: DLP+ SDES+ TLP- FCP+ CmpltTO- CmpltAbrt- UnxCmplt- RxOF+ MalfTLP+ ECRC- UnsupReq- ACSViol-
    CESta: RxErr- BadTLP- BadDLLP- Rollover- Timeout- NonFatalErr-
    CEMsk: RxErr- BadTLP- BadDLLP- Rollover- Timeout- NonFatalErr+
    AERCap: First Error Pointer: 00, GenCap- CGenEn- ChkCap- ChkEn-
    Capabilities: [140 v1] Virtual Channel
    Caps: LPEVC=0 RefClk=100ns PATEntryBits=1
    Arb: Fixed- WRR32- WRR64- WRR128-
    Ctrl: ArbSelect=Fixed
    Status: InProgress-
    VC0: Caps: PATOffset=00 MaxTimeSlots=1 RejSnoopTrans-
    Arb: Fixed- WRR32- WRR64- WRR128- TWRR128- WRR256-
    Ctrl: Enable+ ID=0 ArbSelect=Fixed TC/VC=01
    Status: NegoPending- InProgress-
    Capabilities: [300 v1] Device Serial Number 00-00-00-00-00-00-00-00

    If I attempt an interrogation via iwconfig, it states there are no wireless devices present.
    If I do a "modprobe ath9k.ko" and then do a modinfo I get

    filename: /lib/modules/2.6.32-5-amd64/kernel/drivers/net/wireless/ath/ath9k/ath9k.ko
    license: Dual BSD/GPL
    description: Support for Atheros 802.11n wireless LAN cards.
    author: Atheros Communications
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000002Esv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000002Dsv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000002Csv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000002Bsv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd0000002Asv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000029sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000027sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000024sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    alias: pci:v0000168Cd00000023sv*sd*bc*sc*i*
    depends: mac80211,led-class,ath,cfg80211
    vermagic: 2.6.32-5-amd64 SMP mod_unload modversions
    parm: nohwcrypt:Disable hardware encryption (int)

    iwconfig doesn't change any with the load of this driver. And as far as I can tell it is the proper driver for this card. I am now on the same hardware running Windows 8, which uses the card properly, so I know the WiFi hardware is working. I only have an iPhone 4 connected via WiFi to this machine and no other options to connect Linux with the Internet. I have to load items on a memory card and reboot to Linux then try them and so forth it's slow and painstaking. Not to mention some things are not supported properly when Linux can't talk to the Internet.

    Any help would be appreciated as far as debugging the problem. I have been at this for over two months and no solution has come about. Debian wiki says it the proper driver for this card, the manufacturer states it does not need microcode or firmware to operate, just the proper driver. I am stuck in how to find out what is going wrong. If you have any suggestions on debugging this difficulty I would be very happy as you may be my last chance to dump windows!!!

    Just in case I've missed anything let me paste in some other information...

    with the 'uname -r' I get


    Thanks, I'm a retired prog/analyst with experience in different computers and OS's, but not Linux, and I learn pretty fast.

    Thanks for any help you can offer.

  2. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Mar 23, 2005
    First Name:
    I probably cannot help much if at all, but until somebody else comes along ...

    I don't understand from where you got the driver. Maybe try this one. To find that I searched for "TL-WDN4800 Linux" and you may find additional sources with a similar search.
  3. jkwilborn

    jkwilborn Thread Starter

    Feb 13, 2013
    Thanks Terry, I was suspicious of that! However I'm kind of stalled in the operation and I would like to move to Linux for most of what I do.

    I found the driver at http://linuxwireless.org/en/users/Drivers/ath9k with my chipset under the "supported chipsets" and under that AR9003 where you find the AR9380 chipset. I did find on that page something I haven't done, where it says to 'Enabling Ath9K", as I must have skipped over this before and I don't really have any idea of how to do this. I will be looking at trying to do this procedure to use the distribution Kernel. I don't have Internet access via this platform, so it's difficult to do things like building a kernel, so I need to try another tact.

    Thanks, Terry, will keep an eye open.

    One other item, you assisted me in reconfiguring my router by picking an IP outside of the routers area, which is 192.168.1.X so I picked, and it worked ok, until I did a reboot. Now I cannot access the router at all, even with the IP of the setup. Not to mention the file server is not available. I guess I closed it too soon. Have any idea?

    Thanks again...

  4. TerryNet

    TerryNet Moderator

    Mar 23, 2005
    First Name:
    You're talking about this thread. I posted there again in light of the above info.

    FYI--as long as a thread is still open you can still post to it. And you can mark it "Unsolved" using the button at the beginning or end of the thread. :)
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