Wireless NICs on 7.2

Robert Hall rjhjr0 at gmail.com
Fri Jul 3 06:27:27 UTC 2009

On Thu, Jul 2, 2009 at 4:14 PM, Paul B. Mahol<onemda at gmail.com> wrote:
>> $ ifconfig ral0 list scan
>> SSID            BSSID              CHAN RATE   S:N     INT CAPS
>> livingroom      00:13:10:b9:e7:d6    6   54M -93:-95  100 E
> 93 is too low.

Paul, I really appreciate your help. I'm obviously not an expert on
either wireless networks or radio communication in general. But I
doubt the accuracy of the scan. First of all, there's an XP box less
than a foot away getting a "very good" signal (according to both the
MS and the Belkin utilities), and successfully communicating with the
wireless network. When I move the FBSD box and put the XP box in it's
place, the XP box continues to report a good signal and continues to
communicate with the network.  While the XP box is reporting
variations in rate and signal, the FBSD box reports no change.
Secondly, when I run "ifconfig ral0 up scan", the scan hangs. It never
completes or reports results. According to the man page, it's supposed
to complete the scan, report the results, and exit. I have to Ctrl-C
and run "ifconfig ral0 list scan" to get the results. So I know that
at least part of the scan function doesn't work and I know that it's
not detecting changes in rate and signal that are being reported by
the XP box.

1) The XP box works fine with the Linksys NIC in it.
2) Both the XP and FBSD boxes are Dell Optiplex GX270, so they have
identical hardware aside from the wireless NICs.
3) The md5 checksum for the install CD is correct, so I should have a
good installation of 7.2
4) I seem to be getting a good signal, good enough to communicate with
the network.
5) Both the Belkin and the Linksys work fine in the XP box.
6) The FBSD box always reports the same data, regardless of changes in
7) If I move the boxes and test them in the same physical location,
oriented in the same direction, the XP box works and the FBSD box

So my guess is that output from a scan is the result of a problem in
the driver, and not the result of actual conditions. If I thought I
could solve this with a high gain antenna, I'd buy one in a second.
But at the moment I have pretty good reason to believe that the
problem isn't signal strength. I'd still like to compile a working
ndis driver for either the Belkin F5D7000 v.7032 or the Linksys WMP54G
v.4.1, if that is possible, or get the ral driver to work with the
Linksys. I'd be willing to move from 7.2 to 6.4 if anyone has had
success with that.

More information about the freebsd-questions mailing list