Installing Ubuntu 11.10 (Oneiric Ocelot)… All I had to do was check the friggen box!

Installing 11.10 from scratch (erasing the hard drive) on a Dell Inspiron e1505 with Broadcom wireless card … When you see the checkbox about installing third party software, go ahead and put a check in it. You won’t get a chance to install the Broadcom driver later.

Using software-center or the command line, everything I tried resulted in some kind of error. The “Additional Drivers” icon, which is a front end for jockey, showed the drivers that needed to be installed but failed at every attempt to install them. Jockey-text, from the command line, also failed.

It seems to be a problem reading the installation disk post-installation, even with the disk included in the sources list. And of course I had to use the disk because I couldn’t get on line. I haven’t figured it all out and probably won’t.

When I re-installed from scratch, with the 3rd party box checked, the appropriate Broadcom drivers where installed and the system is, so far, working fine.

Wireless with Dell E1505 and Ubuntu 9.10

I use a Dell Inspiron E1505 with a Broadcom BCM4311 wireless card. Before I upgraded to Ubuntu 9.10, I was using ndiswrapper and connecting with a script that I adapted from the popular wirelessfix.sh script. I did not use Gnome’s NetworkManager; in fact, I couldn’t get it to work with my configuration. I like using the command line to control my computer, but when I tried to connect to a wireless network that required a passphrase, I was unable to figure it out.

I upgraded to 9.10 (Karmic Koala) just a couple of days ago. Upgrade might be the wrong word. I partitioned my hard disk, installed Ubuntu 9.10 from a CD which I got from a paper copy of Linux Pro, then copied what I needed and deleted the old Ubuntu. The installation went smoothly. After installation, I found these instructions, which seemed too easy to be true considering some of the other advice for wireless that is currently on the web. In fact it was even easier. I was able to load bcmwl-kernel-source from the CD using Synaptic Package Manager, and the other files installed as dependencies. I did not have to install ndiswrapper.

Now my wireless connections are handled with ease, and network manager even displays a dialog when a passphrase is called for. I’m a little sad about relinquishing control to an automatic system, but it works well.

This, along with some other improvements, makes 9.10 a very good upgrade.
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Modified wirelessfix.sh

I don’t know who originated the bash script called wirelessfix.sh, but it’s great solution to common ndiswrapper problems. Thank you.

I expanded on it. With my version if I pass a parameter to the script, it will set the essid to the parameter that I passed. If I run the script without the parameter, it will bring up a less screen with the results of “iwlist eth1 scan”, and upon exit from less will request an essid. Often, I copy the essid from the less page and past it when I exit less. Either way , it will bring up the interface with the essid.

Here’s my wirelessfix.sh:
Note1: In myscript, I commented out “modprobe b44” because it wasn’t doing anything for me. You might need it.
Note2: My interface is eth1. Yours might be different.

#!/bin/bash
ifdown eth1
modprobe -r b44
modprobe -r b43
modprobe -r b43legacy
modprobe -r ssb
modprobe -r ndiswrapper
modprobe ndiswrapper
# removed: modprobe b44
if [ -n “$1” ]; then
sudo iwconfig eth1 essid $1
else
iwlist eth1 scan | less
read -p essid: essid
sudo iwconfig eth1 essid $essid
fi
ifup eth1

Twitter Problems, with Firefox on Ubuntu.

I don’t really use twitter, but I’m obsessed with this problem I’m having getting it to work in firefox. I can’t unfollow or do some other functions because the javascript fails. What’s driving me crazy is I cant find any info about it either searching Twitter’s help pages, Firefox’s help pages, or the web. I put in a help request to Twitter, describing the javascript errors that I can see using the debug console. I get errors like “setting a property that has only a getter” and “twttr is undefined”. These seem like problems that would have simple fixes, but I can’t figure out why there aren’t hundreds of posts and bug reports about it.

That being said, I found a way to unfollow using the terminal command line in Linux. The solution is here: http://apiwiki.twitter.com/Twitter-REST-API-Method:-friendships%C2%A0destroy and several other places. For a test, I unfollowed the NYTImes with this line: curl -u bnmng:mypassword -d “screen_name=nytimes” http://twitter.com/friendships/destroy.xml

Adding WEP key with iwconfig

Using Linux, with ndiswrapper for the wireless card, and using the command line to connect, I was having trouble connecting to a wireless access point with a WEP key until I put the keyword “open” in front of the string. If you’re pretty sure you’re entering the correct key and ESSID for a WEP encrypted access point, but still having trouble connecting, look at the man pages for iwconfig and see the examples under the section labeled “key/enc”. You’ll see the keyword “open” in one example and the keyword “restricted” in another. You might have to try each of these if you don’t know which to use. Although in the man pages, the “open” example doesn’t have a key, you can add the key just like in the “restricted” example.

example:
iwconfig eth1 essid MyAccessPoint key open c2fccef3d1

Problem with mime type

For a long time, when I typed a directory specification in my run box, instead of the directory opening up in Nautilus, a terminal window would open. I have other user accounts on my laptop and found that my account was the only one with this problem. I want to go on and on about everything I tried but I’ll just cut to the chase: The problem was a file called mimeapps.list in the directory ~/.local/share/applications. The following line was present:

inode/directory=userapp-gnome-terminal-1AGDMU.desktop;

I changed it to

inode/directory=nautilus-folder-handler.desktop;userapp-gnome-terminal-1AGDMU.desktop;

and it fixed it. That 1AGDMU seems like something that might be different on your computer.