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My Wireless driver is deactivated and I had it before. I know that it's there, it just won't show. Ubuntu in it's full-gloried-smartness wants to download the wireless driver. (FYI, my LAN port is broken, snapped pins. )

The driver should be there from before. Any clue how to re-enable it from the local copy of the driver? I shouldn't need to re-download it.

  1. Ubuntu saw the card and used the right driver.
  2. I upgraded from 9.04 to 9.10.
  3. Ubuntu saw the card and did not use the driver.

ifconfig doesn't show wireless card. It's a Broadcom chipset. "Broadcom STA Wireless driver"

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the upgrade installed a new kernel version, so it needs to get the right driver again. you might be able to find the firmware file it's wanting to download, tho. offhand i'm not sure where to look for it... /lib/firmware or some such maybe. do you know the chipset? what does dmesg say about the device? – quack quixote Dec 11 '09 at 6:37
dmesg is a program that outputs kernel messages. just run dmesg (or more usefully, dmesg | less or dmesg | tail or dmesg | grep something) – quack quixote Dec 11 '09 at 15:54

In the console, use this command

sudo ifconfig wlan0

Does it show your wireless card? If so, try connecting to a wireless access point like this,

sudo iwconfig wlan0 essid "Wifi SSID here"

If there's no problem, this command won't have any output. That being the case, finally close with this,

sudo dhclient wlan0

If all goes well, you'll at the very least be connected and know that the wireless itself works, and it's a matter of the connection using the GUI. But we'll have to see whether any of that works for you.

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nope -the device isn't recognized by ubuntu anymore. It can't see the wireless card, or at least it didn't load the driver. The GUI tells me that the card exists, but that a new driver is needed. – Moshe Dec 11 '09 at 6:16
Alright, then try sudo ifconfig -a This should list out all devices. It's unlikely that your wireless would be anything other than wlan0, but it's worth a check. – Zurahn Dec 11 '09 at 6:17
did that - eth0 (Ethernet), lo(Local Loopback), pan0 (Ethernet) – Moshe Dec 11 '09 at 6:19
up vote 1 down vote accepted

In the end, I used (I can't remember if sudo was required or not.)

(sudo) modprobe wl

to force the kernel to load the old driver, since it was there all along. Then, as stated above, the "missing" driver was reinstalled over the network. Weird.

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