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Thread: can't get 8187L USB wireless adapter to work

  1. #1
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    Default can't get 8187L USB wireless adapter to work

    I am generally new to Linux, but have used Unix (Solaris, etc.) in the distant past... I have spent considerable time reading the forums here and also googling my okole off about this today, but have not found a solution to my problem.

    I have BT4 (pre) Final running in persistent mode on a USB drive. Today I received an 8187L-based USB NIC from wifi-link.com, and have successfully installed it on Windows 7 RC1, although for some reason I haven't gotten it to connect to my WAP (it complains about an incorrect passkey, but the NIC is definitely working). On the same machine (Dell Inspiron 530 mini-tower), booting BT4, it's not working.

    Note that I have done the apt-get update/upgrade/dist-upgrade commands to try to bring my BT4 installation up to date.

    dmesg gives

    wmaster0 (rtl8187): not using net_device ops yet
    phy0: Selected rate control algorithm "minstrel"
    usbcore: registered new interface driver snd-usb-audio
    wlan0 (rtl8187): not using net_device_ops yet
    phy0: hwaddr <EA#> RTL8187vB (default) V1 + rtl8225z2
    usbcore: registered new interface driver rtl8187

    and that is all that I see in that report that has anything to do with this NIC.

    ifconfig -a shows "wlan0" but ifconfig does not.

    so I tried "ifconfig wlan0 up" which adds it to the "ifconfig" result. Then I tried "dhclient wlan0"; I get several lines of feedback including

    wmaster0: unknown hardware address type 801 (twice)
    Listening on LPF/wlan0/<EA#>
    Sending on LPF/wlan0/<EA#>
    Sending on Socket/fallback

    then it goes off and tries to do its DHCPDISCOVER thing eight times, and eventually comes back with "No DHCPOFFERS received".

    This is very similar to what I was getting with the old built-in mini-PCI Intel card that is in my laptop with BT4 beta a while back... I had read in the "working hardware" forum that this Wifi-link device that I got today was a good choice...

    Now, it came with an installation CD that has a linux directory on it, and that contains some scripts and files to build a driver, but I thought that BT4pre would "just work" without any manual futzing required.

    Am I missing something simple here? I hope not, 'cuz that'd be embare--assing.

    Thanks,

    USarge.

  2. #2
    Member imported_onryo's Avatar
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    I would first see what driver is loaded

    # airmon-ng - you should see rtl8187

    make sure your usb is seeing your Alfa
    # lsusb

    Try a modprobe for your diver and remove any other driver that might be loaded.

    # rmmod xxxxx && modprobe rtl8187

    unplug the usb to the Alfa and plug it back in.

    try #airmon-ng - you should see rtl8187

    put your Alfa into mon mode.

    #airmon-ng start wlan0
    # airodump-ng mon0

    To get back into managed mode:
    #airmon-ng stop mon0
    #airmon-ng stop wlan0
    # /etc/init.d/wicd start
    go into the menu and press the wicd icon find your essid and a press on it. Enter your pw.

    #iwconfig and you should see your card in managed mode with pw etc

    This is all really overkill but it should get you on your feet.
    Let me explain officer, I am not a hacker. I am a security tester of sorts!

  3. #3
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    Onryo, thanks so much for your reply... responses inserted below.


    Quote Originally Posted by onryo View Post
    I would first see what driver is loaded

    # airmon-ng - you should see rtl8187

    yup

    make sure your usb is seeing your Alfa
    # lsusb

    yup

    Try a modprobe for your diver and remove any other driver that might be loaded.

    # rmmod xxxxx && modprobe rtl8187

    /proc/modules shows the rtl8187 module as well as three others that are dependent on rtl8187. "rmmod rtl8187" removes all four, and "modprobe rtl8187" brings all four back.

    unplug the usb to the Alfa and plug it back in.

    try #airmon-ng - you should see rtl8187

    yup

    put your Alfa into mon mode.

    #airmon-ng start wlan0
    # airodump-ng mon0

    I tried this before doing any rmmod'g or modprobe'g, and it works. I can see my WAP and two others nearby.

    To get back into managed mode:
    #airmon-ng stop mon0
    #airmon-ng stop wlan0
    # /etc/init.d/wicd start
    go into the menu and press the wicd icon find your essid and a press on it. Enter your pw.

    This is where "she no work". I can start wicd just fine but the Wicd Network Manager always says "no wireless networks found". (However if I boot my BT4 drive on a laptop with a built-in NIC, this works fine...)

    #iwconfig and you should see your card in managed mode with pw etc


    This is all really overkill but it should get you on your feet.
    Well I guess I'm good to go for mod mode, which I presume means I can use the various tools in BT4, but it's weird that the Network Manager doesn't work correctly

    Is there an alternative way to get managed mode "up", other than using the Network Manager? (I seem to recall that this app has its share of problems, back from when I messed around with BT4 Beta.)

    cheers,

    Sarge.

  4. #4
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    This may be a stupid suggestion but have you checked that your network is up?
    Code:
    /etc/init.d/networking start
    If you are using wpa-psk on the access point you have to turn on encryption, just open wicd-client, right click and turn on encryption.

    Hope this helps (sorry if I just seem dumb but I am a noob )

  5. #5
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    Quote Originally Posted by Crunchy View Post
    This may be a stupid suggestion but have you checked that your network is up?
    Code:
    /etc/init.d/networking start
    If you are using wpa-psk on the access point you have to turn on encryption, just open wicd-client, right click and turn on encryption.
    That gets (more or less) the same result as "dhclient wlan0":

    ...
    wmaster0: unknown hardware address type 801
    wmaster0: unknown hardware address type 801
    Listening on LPF/wlan0/00:e0:4c:03:5d:dd
    Sending on LPF/wlan0/00:e0:4c:03:5d:dd
    Sending on Socket/fallback
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 4
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 10
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 11
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 9
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 9
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 10
    DHCPDISCOVER on wlan0 to 255.255.255.255 port 67 interval 8
    No DHCPOFFERS received.wlan0 IEEE 802.11bg ESSID:""
    Mode:Managed Frequency:2.412 GHz Access Point: Not-Associated
    Tx-Power=27 dBm
    Retry min limit:7 RTS thr:off Fragment thr=2352 B
    Encryption key:off
    Power Management:off
    Link Quality:0 Signal level:0 Noise level:0
    Rx invalid nwid:0 Rx invalid crypt:0 Rx invalid frag:0
    Tx excessive retries:0 Invalid misc:0 Missed beacon:0
    No working leases in persistent database - sleeping.


    ----

    BTW I can use the card in monitor mode fine, with airodump-ng, etc. and in fact have cracked the WEP p/w of my own 2nd AP just for my edumacation, but even though iwconfig says

    wlan0 IEEE 802.11bg ESSID:""
    Mode:Managed Frequency:2.412 GHz Access Point: Not-Associated
    Tx-Power=27 dBm
    Retry min limit:7 RTS thr:off Fragment thr=2352 B
    Encryption key:off
    Power Management:off
    Link Quality:0 Signal level:0 Noise level:0
    Rx invalid nwid:0 Rx invalid crypt:0 Rx invalid frag:0
    Tx excessive retries:0 Invalid misc:0 Missed beacon:0


    I just can't seem to get the this thing (BTW to the first responder, it's not an Alfa; I got it from wifi-link.com) to work as a conventional NIC.

    Any more ideas folks? I was reading in another thread about reverting to the "ieee80211" driver from "mac80211" - is this worth a shot?

    cheers,

    USarge.

  6. #6
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    hold the phone - I booted my BT4 stick on my laptop (I had been using a Dell desktop machine) and I've got managed mode working and am connected to my AP. I will post again if/when I've sorted this out, but in the meantime thanks for the help everyone.

    USarge.

  7. #7
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    that thumping sound you hear in the distance is my banging my forehead on my desk... Apparently the teeny little detail that I neglected to notice is that the Wicd Manager's "wireless interface" preference was set to something other than "wlan0" by default.



    I guess this is why we Noobs are related to this little purgatory of a forum while we get ourselves sorted.... duh.


    Sarge.

  8. #8
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    Quote Originally Posted by UniversalSarge View Post
    that thumping sound you hear in the distance is my banging my forehead on my desk... Apparently the teeny little detail that I neglected to notice is that...
    ...., there is an edit button here on the forums.
    To be successful here you should read all of the following.
    ForumRules
    ForumFAQ
    If you are new to Back|Track
    Back|Track Wiki
    Failure to do so will probably get your threads deleted or worse.

  9. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by archangel.amael View Post
    ...., there is an edit button here on the forums.

    ... and your point?

    In my estimation it's useful for NOOOBS such as myself to see the troubleshooting process that other similarly unexceptional souls have had to go through to get things working.

    cheers,

    Sarge.

  10. #10
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    Quote Originally Posted by UniversalSarge View Post
    ... and your point?
    Sarge.
    Yeah sorry if you didn't get my point.
    Use the edit button instead of making several posts one after the other.
    That is why it is there. Not to mention others will more likely read it (and take it seriously) if there is one concise post, instead of three or four in a row by the same person.
    Thanks.
    To be successful here you should read all of the following.
    ForumRules
    ForumFAQ
    If you are new to Back|Track
    Back|Track Wiki
    Failure to do so will probably get your threads deleted or worse.

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