Get D-Link router working with OpenSUSE 10.3

Q How do I get my D-Link router (DSL-2640B) and D-Link adaptor (DWL-111) to work with Linux (OpenSUSE 10.3). I don't know if the attached Windows info helps. Thing is, if I change these settings, it may not function under Windows anymore. Also, is it the router or the adaptor that needs to be compatible with Linux?

A The router connects to the internet, so the settings for that should not be touched, and it does so regardless of any operating system your computer may be running. The adaptor connects the computer to the router and needs a suitable driver to work with Linux. Unfortunately, model numbers are not enough to determine which is the correct driver for your particular hardware, as manufacturers have a habit of changing the chips used inside a device without altering the model number. I was caught out with a D-Link USB adaptor like this. I bought one because it was supported by the Linux prism drivers, only to find that they had just switched to an unsupported chipset.

There is a way out if it turns out that there's no Linux driver for your chip, but it's possible that there is a native solution. Your card is quite likely to be based on the Ralink RT73 chipset. OpenSUSE 10.3 includes a driver for this but does not install it by default. Go to the Software Management section of Yast and install rt2x00-kmp-default. Now plug in your network adaptor and go into the Hardware Information section of Yast. If your device is now listed in the Network Card section, you can go to the Network Card section and set it up. If it isn't listed, unplug the adaptor, open a terminal and run

tail -f /var/log/messages

Plug in the adaptor and watch the output in the terminal. You should see some details whizz past (press Ctrl+C to stop the output). Run

modprobe rt73usb

and if you get no feedback, you have the right driver. Go into the Network Card section of Yast and set up your network connection. You may need to specify the driver module (rt73usb) for the device here. If all of the above fails, there is an option to use the Windows drivers for the adaptor, using a package called NdisWrapper. This emulates the Windows network driver interface, so that Windows drivers can be used in Linux, so install this with Yast. Dig out the driver CD that came with the device and locate the driver .inf file, then in the terminal window you should still have open, run

ndiswrapper -i /path/to/driver.inf
modprobe ndiswrapper

The first command should install the driver where NdisWrapper can find it; the second loads the NdisWrapper module and should give no output if all is well. Now create the interface in Yast using the Add button, set the Device Type to Wireless and the Module Name to NdisWrapper, leaving everything else on the default settings, and follow the usual prompts to set it up.

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