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My experience with Linksys AE1000 wireless USB adapter under Linux.

by: tom

At university I often use a room where the wireless signal is so weak that the connection drops about ten times per hour. This happens when I use the internal wirless adapter in my Lenovo mini-laptop (S10-3). Therefore I decided to try an external adapter, and bought the Linksys AE1000.

Cisco does not support this device on Linux, but the chipset is from Ralink who does:

$ lsusb
Bus 001 Device 013: ID 13b1:002f Linksys AE1000 v1 802.11n [Ralink RT3572]

However, there is a driver for this chipset in the kernel (rt2800usb), but when I plugged in the adapter, it was not recognised as supported by this driver. I'm using Ubuntu 12.04.

So I downloaded the official driver from Ralink's site, compiled it and installed it, and this time around it worked. But as became apparent soon, this driver dropped the connection after a few minutes and caused a kernel oops.

I didn't want to give up on the adapter, and now decided to compile a new kernel with a more current version of the rt2800usb driver. I downloaded the current stable Linux kernel (v3.4.2) and made two changes to the .config: 1) Support for the chipset rt3572 is marked as experimental and is not compiled by default, so this needed to be changed. 2) I set wireless powermanagement to off. Not really sure why, but elsewhere on the net people recommended it.

After installing the new kernel the connection has been stable, and no kernel oops. It works better than the internal adapter, and I can recommend it if you know how to compile a new kernel.

created: 2012-06-11 15:43:22. Permalink

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