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Atheros and drivers

Since the release of kernel 2.6.26 I’ve had some trouble with WiFi since madwifi-ng fails to load, and I’m left with using the ath5k driver that is provided by the kernel. As it turned out, that driver is pretty bad by itself, and I cannot use iSCSI over it.

Luckily, Atheros released the code for their HAL which should mean that ath5k is going to hugely improve over the course of the next few kernel releases, which is an extraordinary thing. I’m really looking forward for 2.6.28 which should improve the situation at least a bit, maybe allowing me finally to use iSCSI over wireless again.

Unfortunately it doesn’t seem like it’s going to take little time, 2.6.27 is not out yet and the e1000e driver is still broken; that would be nice at least to see how the webcam drivers will get once they are merged in the tree (is Skype going to work with them? When I tried them out of a git tree, the 64-to-32 bit IOCTL bridge failed on a few ioctls that caused Skype to fail accessing the webcam).

But who knows, maybe next year we’ll be having Atheros well supported by all the architectures Linux runs on, so one can easily have Atheros-based WiFi routers to work with OpenWRT, which would finally solve my wireless problems here…

I can dream, can’t I?

Comments 5
  1. I’m using madwifi-ng on 2.6.26 so it should work for you. Did you disable module versioning? I’m not sure why but you need to at the moment otherwise you get a bunch of undefined symbols. ath5k also worked for me but it’s too slow for MythTV.

  2. No I didn’t, it’s a bit unsafe in my opinion to disable it since you could then mix different GCC versions (and sometimes it happens for me to make a mistake); that’s why it fails to load though, but I didn’t want to spend time looking at that, sincerely.

  3. The ath9k driver is not a replacement for ath5k, since the two of them target different series of Atheros chipsets (with not much fantasy, the AR9k and AR5k series ;)). The ath9k driver supports Atheros 802.11n (draft) hardware, while ath5k supports Atheros 802.11g series.In particular, the wireless card I have on Yamato is based on AR5212/AR5213 chipset.This does not mean I’m not interested in ath9k, since I do also have an Atheros 802.11n chip, but it’s on the laptop (MacBook Pro), so I’m also following the development of that.

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