WiFi driver update for unsupported chip sets

Raspberry Pi related support

WiFi driver update for unsupported chip sets

Postby janui » 03 Jul 2017, 19:40

After having a WiFi dongle with a 6db antenna lying around for more than a year because it was not supported by Rune, I finally found drivers to get it working. I found the ArchLinux repository "linux-firmware" containing many normally unsupported WiFi and network drivers. All architectures (thus all Pi models) are in theory supported. Summary:
"This repository contains all these firmware images which have been extracted from older drivers, as well various new firmware images which we were never permitted to include in a GPL'd work, but which we _have_ been permitted to redistribute under separate cover."
Go to https://archlinuxarm.org/packages/any/linux-firmware and click download (or copy the url of the download link).
You will get a path and file something like "http://mirror.archlinuxarm.org/armv7h/core/linux-firmware-20170422.ade8332-1-any.pkg.tar.xz", the repository seems active - expect updates and therefore a different filename. Make a note of the full path and filename.
Log into your Pi with SSH and upload the file to an empty directory, eg /home:
Code: Select all
cd /home
Check that the directory is empty, otherwise use another directory.
You can download the file directly to the Pi, you may need to change path and filename to the one noted above:
Code: Select all
wget http://mirror.archlinuxarm.org/armv7h/core/linux-firmware-20170422.ade8332-1-any.pkg.tar.xz
Then update the Pi with linux-firmware, the filename should be the one you downloaded:
Code: Select all
pacman -U linux-firmware-20170422.ade8332-1-any.pkg.tar.xz
Then delete the file:
Code: Select all
rm linux-firmware-20170422.ade8332-1-any.pkg.tar.xz
If the repository "linux-firmware" is updated in the future you can install the latest version with:
Code: Select all
pacman -S linux-firmware

An optional step if you have a WiFi adaptor with the RTL8812au chipset, see post 8812au-driver-for-edimax-ew-7811utc-t1312.html#p21547 (thanks to anandfr).
To update the image supporting the Pi Zero (this image: raspberry-pi-zero-support-in-0-4-t3711-70.html#p20577) you need to upload the specified file to the directory: /lib/modules/4.9.17-1-ARCH/kernel/drivers/net/wireless not the directory /lib/modules/3.12.26-1-ARCH/kernel/drivers/net/wireless as specified in the post.

Finally reboot and you should be able to use many WiFi adaptors not normally supported in the standard Linux distributions.

Tested using the Pi Zero image mentioned above, other images have not been tested.

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