[Solved] Ubuntu 11.10 Wireless Issues

Continuing with the joy that is Ubuntu 11.10 Oneiric Ocelot and how it completely messed up my previously working wireless, here’s a solution. Note that I’m currently using a Dell Core i3 Inspiron using the following Broadcom network adapter:

Broadcom Corporation BCM43224 802.11a/b/g/n [14e4:4353]

You can run lspci -nvn | grep -i net from a shell console if you want to find out which card your machine uses.

Anyway, long story short, you may need to remove the wrong drivers and install the correct ones. This solution worked but may not work for everyone depending on your hardware:

Remove and uninstall the drivers:

sudo apt-get purge broadcom-sta-common broadcom-sta-source bcmwl-kernel-source

Install the correct one:

sudo apt-get install b43-fwcutter firmware-b43-installer

Enjoy and let us know if this solution worked for you. Found a different solution? Tell us about it!

edit: This solution still seems to be working up to current version of Ubuntu 14.10 aka Utopic Unicorn

61 thoughts on “[Solved] Ubuntu 11.10 Wireless Issues

  1. Thanks a million for that, have BCM4312 low power module fitted in my Dell Latitude E4300 so the install failed but nicely told me what diver file to replace it with:

    sudo apt-get install b43-fwcutter firmware-b43-lpphy-installer

    Appreciate your efforts and no impressed with the upgrade for breaking this (Lubuntu in my case)


  2. Thanks for your input MarkyD. Like I said, this solution isn’t for everyone, but thankfully aptitude is still smart enough to point you to the right driver.

  3. Thanks for the information. I am running an older Gateway laptop with a Broadcom Adapter. I couldn’t get Ubuntu 11.10 to see the wireless until I followed your steps. I’m up and running now.

  4. hey i tried the command to find my card type… And this is what it gave…. Please help

    siddharth@siddharth-Aspire-5570:~$ lspci -nvn | grep -i net
    02:00.0 Ethernet controller [0200]: Marvell Technology Group Ltd. 88E8038 PCI-E Fast Ethernet Controller [11ab:4352] (rev 14)
    03:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 3945ABG [Golan] Network Connection [8086:4222] (rev 02)
    Subsystem: Intel Corporation PRO/Wireless 3945BG Network Connection [8086:1005]

  5. Wow all i have to say is thanks i sat at my computer now for over six hours trying to get my broadcom to work on my desktop and after everything i did and looked up this was the only one that worked thank you i just switched from windows 7 to ubuntu 11.10 … So thank you I usually dont write commments or anything but what i went thru u deserve it

  6. Hi, im new to linux, what do I do if the output I get is:
    Realtek Semiconductor Co., Ltd. RTL-8169 Gigabit Ethernet (rev10) ?

    Would appreciate a answer 🙂

  7. Wireless now works great on my old Dell Inspiron e1505 with ubuntu 11.10, and Broadcom 4311 wireless adapter. Thanks!

  8. Tried the same. I get a

    b43-fwcutter is already the latest version.
    firmware-b43-installer is already the latest version.

    I can connect through wired but not wireless. HELP!

  9. msnarain :

    Tried the same. I get a

    b43-fwcutter is already the latest version.
    firmware-b43-installer is already the latest version.

    I can connect through wired but not wireless. HELP!

    Hey msnarain, make sure you uninstall the drivers first. Follow the steps above and you should be good!

  10. Worked for me on a Dell E5500….I had the low power WiFi also but using sudo apt-get install b43-fwcutter firmware-b43-lpphy-installer worked!!!


  11. Would not work on an upgrade but worked beautifully when I decided to re-install Ubuntu Studio 11.10. This is on my Dell Inspiron 6400. Thanks!

  12. Thanks!!

    Worked fine on my old but loyal HP pavillion dv5000 (2006 model).
    Why do we have to suffer this? I mean… It happens on most notebooks I install Ubuntu. This is the kind of stuff that immediatly drives newbies away from Linux, I think.

    Anyway, Cheers and Thank You!

  13. I feel like this is the problem I’m having, but your suggestion doesn’t help me. I’m using an hp probook 6550b.

    $ lspci -vvnn | grep Broadcom
    44:00.0 Network controller [0280]: Broadcom Corporation BCM43224 802.11a/b/g/n [14e4:4353] (rev 01)

    I removed the drivers per your instructions, then installed b43-fwcutter & firmware-b43-installer.

    The problem I’m having is that firmwareb43-installer chokes and gives me this error:

    Setting up firmware-b43-installer (1:014-9) …
    Unsupported device(s) found: PCI id 14e4:4353

    Any suggestions?

  14. @chad
    Hey Chad, it’s strange that it wouldn’t work as I have the same hardware as you. Is this on a fresh install or on an upgrade? It’s insane to me that this is STILL an issue with 11.10. Hopefully they sort things out with Ubuntu 12.04 next month.

  15. perfect fix after reinstall of 11.10 it was working prior to an update then crapped out when something got corrupted did reinstall wireless wouldn’t work thanks so much this issue was driving me crazy and having to hardwire was inconvenient

  16. Amazing!!!!!!!!! ive tried everything….and this is the solution. hp pavilion zd7160us…bcm4306 802.11b/c 14e4:4320
    thanks mike

  17. Yes, Amazing.
    I use HP Pavilion Notebook. I just upgraded to Ubuntu 12.04 and was perplexed to see that wireless was not working. I followed your instruction above and now it is working perfectly.
    Thanks a million Mike. Continue to do the good work.

  18. Dude it worked! Thank you, I was having a hell of a time with latency and the wireless dropping off. Ubuntu 12.04 on a Macbook Pro 6,2

  19. Worked perfectly on my Dell XPS M1210 with Ubuntu 12.04. I had been searching the internet for the past week trying all types of fixes, this finally did it! Thanks so much!

  20. This also worked for me on Mint Linux 12 and Inspiron e1505 with the broadcom bcm4311. Thanks dude, I had to reinstall when I couldn’t get wired to work after I f’d up the wireless.

  21. Tried this with my Acer Aspire 2902Z and was unsuccessful. Still without wireless and certainly don’t want to upgrade to pangolin without figuring out what the heck’s going on with my wireless.

  22. After installing Ubuntu 12.2 on my Dell Latitude D830, wireless doesn’t work. Dont understand why broadcom-sta-commun and boadcom-sta-source was not installed!? Now its OK. Thank you so much.

  23. I had no option for wireless on ubuntu 12.10 and I solved it by installing following
    sudo apt-get install broadcom-sta-common broadcom-sta-source bcmwl-kernel-source

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