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This card has a prism2 chipset and works like a charm. I think it is a great card, and it only cost about $40, including shipping charges. I would recommend this card.

I started off trying to get the linux-wlan-ng driver to work because that is what every HOWTO I found recommended. I found the wlan driver to be a pain to set up, and not very feature complete. I couldn’t get WEP to work, nor could I specify an SSID. The documentation was really poor. To do anything with the card, you need to edit the wlan driver’s configuration files, but the documentation gives no syntax suggestions or examples. I wanted to be able to use different network settings (WEP keys, SSIDs) on my home network than on my work network, but I could find no suggestions how to set that up. It looked like I had to have separate network interfaces for each network setting. Not very helpful.

Recently my friend suggested using the Orinoco driver. I would have tried it earlier, but I didn’t think that it supported prism2 chipsets. It does, and it is sweet. It is much easier to use than linux-wlan-ng. Here is how to set it up under Linux 2.4.22:

  1. Recompile the kernel:
    1. Include no PCMCIA/CardBus support under General setup—>PCMCIA/CardBus support.
    2. Include basic Wireless LAN (non-hamradio) support under Network device support.
    3. Do not include support for any of the specific drivers under Wireless LAN (non-hamradio).
  2. Install pcmcia-cs. Check to make sure that it compiled the Orinoco driver in /lib/modules/pcmcia.
  3. Install wireless-tools. This should give you the iwconfig utility.
  4. Start the cardmgr service.
  5. Put the card in the bus, and see if you get an IP address.
  6. It isn’t very difficult. If you have a problem, check the output of the configuration script when you start to compile pcmcia-cs; it can give you some pointers.

The process is almost the same with the 2.6 kernel, except that the driver is included in the actual kernel. I am very happy with the driver over all.

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