Dell Inspiron 6000 and FC5 Wireless Experience

Wow, this took me a good two hours to figure out.

Luckily a had a wired LAN available to search Google to figure out how to get my Wireless card working. After installation of FC5, I could see “Intel Corporation Pro/Wireless 2200 BG” in my Network Configuration utility under the hardware section, but dmesg showed:

ipw2200: Intel(R) PRO/Wireless 2200/2915 Network Driver, git-1.1.1
ipw2200: Copyright(c) 2003-2006 Intel Corporation
ipw2200: Detected Intel PRO/Wireless 2200BG Network Connection
ipw2200: ipw2200-bss.fw request_firmware failed: Reason -2
ipw2200: Unable to load firmware: -2
ipw2200: failed to register network device

Well, it took me a lot of searching to know I needed to “dmesg | grep ipw” to see what’s going on, but once I did this, I was on my way. A little google searching for “ipw2200-bss.fw request_firmware failed” revieled that I needed to go to and download the firmware v3.0 file.

I then untared the contents into /lib/firmware, then moved everything from /lib/firmware/ipw2200-fw/* to /lib/firmware/ (this took me a bit to figure out, I did what everything said, unpack to /lib/firmware, but the tarball held the contents in a sub directory, need to get just the files into /lib/firmware/

Now, to get my os to reload the module:

modprobe -r ipw2200
modprobe ipw2200

And we have lift off, iwconfig finally shows my device. dmesg looks good now, also.

Lastly, I needed to connect to a shared key authentication WEP network with a hex key.

iwconfig eth1 essid theoffice key restricted 123456789

Finally, tell eth1 to enable itself:

ifup eth1

I ommited all of the trial and error I went through to get it working. One thing that tripped me up for awhile was the shared key deal. Had to do a “man iwconfig” to figure out that “key restricted 123456789″ was the right way to do a shared key in hex.

I put the last two commands in my /etc/rc.local file to make the wireless connection turn on after boot up.

Hope this helps someone else.


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