• Broadcom firmware is needed for b43, but I have no network - an easierwork around

    Unfortunately, Broadcom does not allow the redistribution of the firmware needed
    to operate its wireless cards that use b43 or b43legacy as a driver.

    This situation is merely an annoyance when the Linux system has some other means
    of connecting to the network; openSUSE contains a special script that downloads
    files that contain the firmware and uses the utility b43-fwcutter to extract the
    necessary files. The files that are downloaded can be redistributed, but their
    12 MB size precludes them from being included in openSUSE install media.

    To make the installation of the firmware as easy as possible in this troublesome
    case, I have modified the standard bcm43xx firmware installation script to skip
    the download stage. This new script and the necessary files are included in a
    tar archive that can be downloaded using any system with network access.

    The specific steps are as follows:

    1. Download
    http://www.lwfinger.com/b43-firmware...rmware.tar.bz2 on
    any system with a network connection.

    2. Copy that file to your openSUSE system via USB stick or CD.

    3. From the directory where you copied the file, run the command

    Code:
    tar jxvf no_net_install_bcm43xx_firmware.tar.bz2
    That command creates a new subdirectory bcm43xx_firmware with four files in it.

    4. Install the b43 and b43legacy firmware by running the command:

    Code:
    sudo bcm43xx_firmware/install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
    This step will create the necessary firmware files in /lib/firmware/b43/ and
    /lib/firmware/b43legacy/ and then reboot your computer. When it comes back up,
    the wireless device should be working and can be configured in the normal manner.

    5. (optional) If you do not have much disk space available, you can save about
    25 MB by using the commands

    Code:
    rm -rf bcm43xx_firmware
    rm no_net_install_bcm43xx_firmware.tar.bz2
    The downloaded file is suitable for all supported versions of openSUSE, and
    works for all architectures. I suggest that you leave it on whatever medium you
    used to transport it to openSUSE so that it will be available for your next
    installation of openSUSE.

    Larry Finger
    This article was originally published in forum thread: Broadcom firmware is needed for b43, but I have no network - an easierwork around started by lwfinger View original post
    Comments 8 Comments
    1. am356's Avatar
      am356 -
      Dear Larry I tried your method although it didn't work...

      I'm running Open suse 12.3 on a macbook pro 9,1.
      I believe the broadcom chip in the laptop is a BCM 4331.

      here is a copy from my command line after following your steps.

      linux-f07h:~ # tar jxvf no_net_install_bcm43xx_firmware.tar.bz2
      bcm43xx_firmware/
      bcm43xx_firmware/broadcom-wl-5.100.138.tar.bz2
      bcm43xx_firmware/README
      bcm43xx_firmware/wl_apsta-3.130.20.0.o
      bcm43xx_firmware/install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
      linux-f07h:~ # sudo bcm43xx_firmware/install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
      cp: cannot stat ‘broadcom-wl-5.100.138.tar.bz2’: No such file or directory
      Extracting b43 firmware
      tar (child): broadcom-wl-5.100.138.tar.bz2: Cannot open: No such file or directory
      tar (child): Error is not recoverable: exiting now
      tar: Child returned status 2
      tar: Error is not recoverable: exiting now
      Cannot open input file broadcom-wl-5.100.138/linux/wl_apsta.o


      b43 firmware successfully installed.


      Extracting b43legacy firmware
      Cannot open input file wl_apsta-3.130.20.0.o
      b43legacy firmware successfully installed.
      You may want to reboot now to allow the driver to access the new firmware


      I'm pretty new to Open suse and I do not understand where I am going wrong, could you please assist me?

      thanks

      Ale
    1. caf4926's Avatar
      caf4926 -
      Thanks Larry
    1. mikespiers's Avatar
      mikespiers -
      Totally accurate - thanks from me too.

      It's a shame this isn't in the release notes (or if it is, it would benefit from being more obvious).
    1. robb3's Avatar
      robb3 -
      Don't
      bcm43xx_firmware/install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
      but cd bcm43xx_firmware/ and perform the command
      install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net (as root)
    1. caf4926's Avatar
      caf4926 -
      I notice negative feedback about 'wl' from the terminal, so I notice the download also includes
      broadcom-wl-5.100.138 folder
      ?
    1. iltoroblu's Avatar
      iltoroblu -
      Quote Originally Posted by robb3 View Post
      Don't
      bcm43xx_firmware/install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
      but cd bcm43xx_firmware/ and perform the command
      install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net (as root)
      For some weird reason it only worked when I did the following:

      cd bcm43xx_firmware/
      su (root)
      drag-and-drop the file in the terminal: install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
    1. caf4926's Avatar
      caf4926 -
      Quote Originally Posted by iltoroblu View Post
      For some weird reason it only worked when I did the following:

      cd bcm43xx_firmware/
      su (root)
      drag-and-drop the file in the terminal: install_bcm43xx_firmware_no_net
      I too did this

      Tip*: Make your terminal keep above others and it's easier...
    1. janoleholm's Avatar
      janoleholm -
      Thanks Larry
      Once again the old HP Pavilion came up and running wireless