Old problem with RTL 8185L driver on old P4 system

I am a relative SUSE novice and I am re-purposing an old P4 system (3.0Ghz, max memory) by installing the latest (and last) 32-bit distro. I have a PCI MSI PC54G3III wireless card with the RTL 8185L chip which crashes all the installers (DVD, Network etc). Without this card fitted the installation is perfect. Subsequently adding it crashes the installed system. The cards (I have 2) work just fine under Windows 7 so I suspect a driver issue. I have seen other posts reporting various difficulties but cannot find any permanent fix or work-around. Please tell me EXACTLY what to do to use the Windows driver if this will help. Thanks.

You might start by running “lspci” to verify the chipset in your card…
The following page which describes current Linux kernel support for that chipset doesn’t also list your network card (which may or may not mean anything).



Thanks for the reply. I have already verified the chipset but the driver is not an exact match. There are other posts indicating various problems but a couple seem to have solved the issue by using the Windows driver and I can’t understand how to do that.

On both counts you’d have to be talking about very, very old posts more than a decade old.
There was a common technique at the time using ndiswrapper to build network drivers.

You’ve posted to the wrong forum.
I haven’t tried recently to search forum postings that old, but you can try searching the Networking and Wireless forums for ndiswrapper threads if you want to try that path.

At this point, usually I decide that it’s easier to spend $5 on a cheap, used network card which doesn’t have the same problems.


Your advice is probably good. Yes, the posts were old (SUSE 11.x) and, yes, they mentioned NDISWRAPPER. At that point I ran out of ideas because I could not find any documentation for that tool. Thanks for the pointer to more relevant forums but maybe different hardware will be a simpler option.