I have long since loathed using this piece of hardware ever since I got my Gateway MT6452 with it built in. It was annoying, and horrible to work with. It frustrated me for the longest time, and I even considered throwing my laptop out of my window in my anger. Hopefully I can save you a little bit of that, with a few simple steps.

First off, since 2.6.23- the RTL8187 driver has been included vanilla, so you could look into that.

Anyway, to get this driver up, it's pretty straightforward. You need to load two modules:

modprobe r8187
modprobe mac80211
From there it is pretty much up to you. Configuring it with ifconfig, iwconfig, or other tools is all on you. However I have written a small bash script which you can use to configure your network located on sourceforge:

(I had to put it in the code brackets because apparently you can't post a link until you have 15 posts) :P

If you want to use that, here's how:

Download wlan0up_BT3.

cd into the directory that you downloaded it to, Firefox's default directory for Backtrack is /root so that is probably where you will find it.

cd /root
Now rename it to just wlan0up:

mv wlan0up_BT3 wlan0up
Change the permissions so that it can be executable:

chmod a+x wlan0up
And then move it to your /bin directly, so you can just type "wlan0up" to get it running:

mv wlan0up /bin/wlan0up
Now you can type
in a terminal, and it will give you the options to do the following:

Shutdown all other interfaces besides wlan0
(I recommend this, because for me I had some issues in the past with other interfaces interfering with wlan0)
to accept that

Would you like to change the mode of wlan0?
Answering "y" here will let you select managed, auto, or monitor, adhoc or whatever.
Just select "n" here because the mode should be at managed, which is the default.

Would you like to list the networks available?
Typing "y" here will show you the available networks, and their information.
If you know the essid of the network, just say "n" here otherwise review the essids available.

Now please enter network name
Here you should enter your essid.
for instance
Now enter the p4ssw0rdz. If there is no key, enter off.
Enter you WEP key here, or wpa or what have you.
Would you like to get your DHCP request? y/n
Type "y" to automatically configure your IP settings, and netmask, and all of the other goodies that DHCP can do for you.
If you typed "n" you will be met with prompts to set up your static info.

Next it pings google, make sure you get a connection here.

And lastly it uses the macchanger tool to fake your MAC address. This isn't important for you to configure your network, I mainly wrote this tool for myself, and I like to fake my MAC address when I get onto wireless networks a lot. Type "y" to input your new MAC, or "n" to skip this step.

And that's all, you should be connected to the network.

Have fun pwning teh n00bs and watching your pr0n.