First go with wireless and debian

Discussion in 'NZ Computing' started by David Preece, Feb 7, 2004.

  1. David Preece

    David Preece Guest

    Hi,

    I'm having a go at persuading my linux gateway and general server
    machine to be a wireless gateway too and have run into some difficulties.

    The machine was set up as a standard eth0 is the outside world and eth1
    is the inside with masquerading type thing. I would quite like to be
    able to have machines that are on the lan via wireless and machines that
    are on the lan via wired connections to be in the same cloud from a
    layer 2 perspective. Consequently the plan looks like this:

    1, Install PCI card (done).
    2, Install drivers (done).
    3, Bridge the wired internal interface and the wireless internal
    interface together (done).
    4, Configure the card to have an ESSID and WEP encryption key.

    And before anyone moans about WEP, it's quite secure enough for what I
    want to do.

    Anyway, as you can maybe see the problem is at step 4. The device is up:

    root@gateway:~# ifconfig ra0
    ra0 Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:08:A1:69:6C:A0
    UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST MTU:1500 Metric:1
    RX packets:6 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
    TX packets:84 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
    collisions:0 txqueuelen:100
    RX bytes:294 (294.0 b) TX bytes:2436 (2.3 KiB)
    Interrupt:11 Base address:0xa000

    root@gateway:~# cat /proc/net/wireless
    Inter-| sta-| Quality | Discarded packets | Missed
    face | tus | link level noise | nwid crypt frag retry misc | beacon
    ra0: 0000 0. 0 0 0 0 0 0 0
    0

    The bridge is up

    root@gateway:~# brctl show
    bridge name bridge id STP enabled interfaces
    lan 8000.0008a1696ca0 yes eth1
    ra0

    The bridge has an IP address and is also up:

    root@gateway:~# ifconfig lan
    lan Link encap:Ethernet HWaddr 00:08:A1:69:6C:A0
    inet addr:192.168.0.1 Bcast:192.168.0.255 Mask:255.255.255.0
    UP BROADCAST RUNNING MULTICAST MTU:1500 Metric:1
    RX packets:3820 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 frame:0
    TX packets:3183 errors:0 dropped:0 overruns:0 carrier:0
    collisions:0 txqueuelen:0
    RX bytes:403602 (394.1 KiB) TX bytes:1576060 (1.5 MiB)

    And this post is being made across that bridge so it can't be all that
    bad. iwconfig shows the interface as being in good spirits:

    root@gateway:~# iwconfig ra0
    ra0 RT2400PCI ESSID:eek:ff/any
    Mode:Managed Channel:1 Bit Rate:11Mb/s
    RTS thr:eek:ff Fragment thr:eek:ff
    Encryption key:eek:ff
    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

    ....and this is where the trouble starts. I thought I'd set an essid:

    root@gateway:~# iwconfig ra0 essid ANonObviousName
    Error for wireless request "Set ESSID" (8B1A) :
    SET failed on device ra0 ; Device or resource busy.

    And get this device busy error. If I take it down and try again:

    root@gateway:~# ifconfig ra0 down
    root@gateway:~# iwconfig ra0 essid ANonObviousName
    Error for wireless request "Set ESSID" (8B1A) :
    SET failed on device ra0 ; Network is down.

    It complains that it now can't do it because the device is not busy. Hmmm.

    Anyone done this before?

    Also, can anyone point me to a quick "wifi for lamers" type article that
    explains what the difference between a managed and master node is (for
    example).

    And, yes, I know that it would have been easier just to buy an access
    point, but that didn't entail learning anything :)

    Got to go, babysitting next door (hence the hurried attempt to get
    802.11 going).

    Cheers,
    Dave
     
    David Preece, Feb 7, 2004
    #1
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  2. David Preece

    steve Guest

    David Preece wrote:

    > Hi,
    >
    > I'm having a go at persuading my linux gateway and general server
    > machine to be a wireless gateway too and have run into some difficulties.
    >
    > The machine was set up as a standard eth0 is the outside world and eth1
    > is the inside with masquerading type thing. I would quite like to be
    > able to have machines that are on the lan via wireless and machines that
    > are on the lan via wired connections to be in the same cloud from a
    > layer 2 perspective. Consequently the plan looks like this:
    >
    > 1, Install PCI card (done).
    > 2, Install drivers (done).
    > 3, Bridge the wired internal interface and the wireless internal
    > interface together (done).
    > 4, Configure the card to have an ESSID and WEP encryption key.
    >
    > And before anyone moans about WEP, it's quite secure enough for what I
    > want to do.
    >


    You don't say whose wireless gear it is.

    If it's from DSE, let me know. There are some issues with the Linux drivers
    and they need to be re-compiled from source - after you correct 4 errors in
    the source code.

    The Taiwanese vendor of the DSE equipment needs better linux programming
    support......or they need better typing skills, at least. :)
     
    steve, Feb 7, 2004
    #2
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  3. David Preece

    David Preece Guest

    steve wrote:
    > If it's from DSE, let me know. There are some issues with the Linux drivers
    > and they need to be re-compiled from source - after you correct 4 errors in
    > the source code.


    Ah, delightful. I built from source using a file rt2400_linux-1.1.0.tgz
    dated 5/2/04 - maybe they've finally fixed it. Configure wanted a
    location for the kernel source (understandably) then borked because I
    had only installed the kernel headers. Typing make seemed to work,
    however, and the driver loaded via modprobe with no problem.

    I got the driver from here:
    http://www.minitar.com/index.php?maincat=download

    Actually, it went much better than I thought it would. It's been a long
    time since I've had to do anything other than reset passwords, add user
    accounts and "apt-get" any of the Linux boxes I administer.

    > The Taiwanese vendor of the DSE equipment needs better linux programming
    > support......


    Just some testing would be nice.

    Any chance of posting a summary of what I should be looking for to be
    fixed in the code?

    Cheers,
    Dave
     
    David Preece, Feb 7, 2004
    #3
  4. David Preece

    David Preece Guest

    steve wrote:
    >>Any chance of posting a summary of what I should be looking for to be
    >>fixed in the code?

    >
    > Most of it is covered in the forums at www.minitar.com


    Oh, this stuff is priceless. I may be a tad pissed at the general state
    of ralink's drivers, but you can't beat their forum:

    "I just downloaded the driver that was uploaded today in the Minitar
    download section. It is the exact same file as
    rt2400_linux-09102003.tgz, that is, the exact same source we already had."

    Fabulous way of doing a version bump. Thankfully the forum appears to be
    blessed with someone paid to be there. He says:

    "We will contact them and find out what is going on. A complete diff of
    the 09102003 source showns it's identical to the 1.1.0 version. "

    But another forum poster offers this gem:

    "The issue with the essid is setting it more than a couple of seconds
    after the interface is up. I have no problem putting the appropriate
    ifconfig and iwconfig commands in a script and running it."

    And indeed a quick script:

    root@gateway:/home/davep# cat setess
    ifconfig ra0 down
    ifconfig ra0 up
    iwconfig ra0 essid zedkep

    Does appear to do the job. Not that I can magically see the network
    appear under the airport settings (using a Mac, see), but I do think
    progress has been made.

    There's also some interesting stuff under iwconfig_usage.txt (included
    as part of the driver source). Not that I'm holding my breath.

    Dave
     
    David Preece, Feb 8, 2004
    #4
  5. David Preece

    steve Guest

    David Preece wrote:

    > Just some testing would be nice.
    >
    > Any chance of posting a summary of what I should be looking for to be
    > fixed in the code?


    Most of it is covered in the forums at www.minitar.com

    I haven't actualy got the wireless to work....though the PCI card can
    packets flying around.....but no usuable network connection.

    The Access Point (the 802.11g one) can't yet see any packets from the
    network card.

    I spent 2-3 days on it during my holidays.....and I think I *almost* got
    there. I could set the ESSID and channel and country-config. But the device
    still seemed to htink it was "busy" far too often.
     
    steve, Feb 8, 2004
    #5
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