Fedora 9 on Dell D430

I had a tough time getting a hold of this system. Dell sent it, but didn't update my dell account with the shipping information. The phone DHL didn't leave a slip indicating they tried to deliver the package. The dell phone system kept saying the system hadn't shipped. It would be updated with more info later.

Well, I finally got a hold of a person. The day that DHL had returned the system to Dell. Damn. Dell did its best to make it right, they sent a comparable system (it was an outlet special) overnight that day. So I got it the next day. Right, ready to install, got my DVD drive. Where does it plug in? There's a manual in this box over here about an enclosure. But there is no enclosure to be found. Dell is going to make that right, too. But two strikes.

I borrowed a drive enclosure from a co-worker. So I installed Fedora 9. Looks good so far, nice option to encrypt the whole drive from the install screen!

Here I am at the bain in the existence of linux users everywhere. Wireless firmware setup.

# lspci
0c:00.0 Network Controller: Broadcom Corporation BCM4312 802.11a/b/g (rev 01)

Ok, not too bad. Let's see what yum has to say about firmware.

# yum list "*bcm*"
Installed Packages
bcm43xx-fwcutter.i386 [rest of stuff excluded]

Interesting, what is this fwcutter?

#rpm -q --list bcm43xx-fwcutter
[bunch of files in /usr/share/doc and /usr/bin/bcm43xx-fwcutter]
... read the README ...

So basically, 5hiw bcm43xx-fwcutter will extract the firmware code from another file. The possible sources are listed in the README file. [goosechase?] Ok, I download from Dell's site. But that is an .exe and it doesn't work. Ok, so I go for OpenWRT.org's download. No good, that is version 4.x. This version of bcm43xx-fwcutter only works on 3.x firmware code. OK, let's see. Who do I trust? Ummmmmm.

So I install wine to try the dell .exe file. There's an up to date one, and an old one that I down load. I run "winecfg" -- next -- next -- finish, just like the real thing. Then wine "/.../R83097.exe". That really is next -- continue -- ..." But it doesn't unpack a bcmwl5.sys file. Ok, I'll try R102318.exe. There we go. "

# bcm43xx-fwcutter -w /lib/firmware /home/dude/.wine/Dell/R102318/bcmwl5.sys

... no love ...

Ok, so this is where it gets confusing. I look for bcm43xx in the kernel: lsmod | grep bcm. Nothing. Damn. Google, wherefore bcm43xx? Google says bcm43xx is deprecated. Yes, deprecated. Use b43. Damn, I remember now in NetworkManager that it used b43. Ok: lsmod| grep b43.

b43 123808 0

OK. Now we're talking. "yum list b43". No joke, b43-fwcutter!

So, I go back to the openwrt download, because b43 supports version 4. untar, b43-fwcutter -w /lib/firmware wl_apsta.o; modprobe b43; ifup wlan0; ##wlan config previously completed

#### Damn that was easy!!!!


Advertising sucks


Here is the problem, in bits and bytes. Says Kevin Johnson of Microsoft:
Microsoft has done a value chain analysis and decided to invest in research and development and organic growth in some areas, and combine that with assets it has acquired, primarily small companies. "Our focus is bringing together the assets we've created in the organization, combined with assets we acquire, to create a world-class advertising platform," he said.
Who wants an advertising platform? Do you, well it will cost you anywhere from $20 to $200 to buy that advertising platform from Microsoft Corporation. Good luck, Enjoy. I don't like it, and I won't buy it.