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I've been thinking of changing operating systems for a while (mostly because of Fedora's requirement to upgrade frequently). I think I've settled on CentOS (because of the infrequent upgrades and my familiarity with Red Hat based products).

I'm currently running CentOS from a live CD but was unable to get the wireless card to connect to or even find a network. Is this indicative of a problem I'll have getting the wireless card to work if/when I do finally install CentOS completely?

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In general 'yes'.

Livecds have the same basic set of (wireless) drivers that a stock system will have - so it will not work out of the box (while hardware that works on livecds has been known to fail on install, the opposite is unusual).

However, in many cases, you should be able to install the drivers yourself.

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Does it make sense to try and install the drivers while running the live-cd? Or would that cause issues with the drivers currently installed? –  Ramy Sep 6 '11 at 13:50
    
well, it makes sense to. Install the drivers, test, note down the procedures, and when you install the OS, repeat the process. –  Journeyman Geek Sep 6 '11 at 14:02
    
cool thanks. just wasn't sure if i'd run into problems because of whatever's installed for the OS on disk (not the live-cd). –  Ramy Sep 6 '11 at 14:07
    
I run a persistent USB boot whenever possible. Mine always seem to get a little finicky after a month of use or so but I install all the proper drivers and test any software that I am likely to use. It is also a great way to introduce friends to a new OS or safely and securely use another persons computer. –  Dennis Sep 6 '11 at 15:39

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